Travel Tips from the Eastman BroadBand

Travel Tips from the Eastman BroadBand

Don’t be careless, but don’t be afraid to strike out on your own for a little while
Mariel Roberts, cello

When you’re in a group of 30 people, its a little hard not to look like a tourist. Although I am not advocating wandering off to dark and seedy corners alone, there’s something to be said for breaking the group seal! In an hour I had between lunch and rehearsal I wanted to go check out a shop I had seen downtown. Since it was a short break, I just headed down by myself and wound up: being recognized from our concert the previous night and interviewed for Mexican news in Spanish (I speak at approximately a kindergarten level), tasting fried spicy grasshoppers, learning about what makes a great mole seasoning, trying mezcal for the first time, and making a local friend who was amazingly patient with my struggling conversational skills and gave me a free tour of the downtown area!

Take pictures of the moments, not the sights
Isabel Kim, clarinet

You will want to remember the push-up contests, the long bus rides, the kids who ask for your autograph, the sketchy restaurant that made you feel like death, and the embarrassing things your colleagues did after drinking tequila. If you forget what Guanajuato looks like, Google it or make good friends with whoever’s booking performers for the 2011 Cervantino Festival.

Always seek out the local bakery and buy more than you think you can eat
Hanna Hurwitz, violin

Over the past few years of working and traveling with the Eastman BroadBand, I have come to notice that if we’re not rehearsing, we’re eating. And it seems that no matter where we go, I am lured by the scent of the local bakery. Even when the BroadBand is rehearsing in Rochester, flutist Deidre Huckabay and I can be found frequenting the Little Bakery on early mornings before a long day of playing. On the BroadBand’s 2007 trip to Sardinia, I patronized a different cafe every morning, sampling as many different breakfast pastries as I could without putting myself into a coma before rehearsal. This past trip to Guanajuanto proved just as delicious. With one of the city’s best bakeries only a five-minute walk from our hotel, we indulged in an array of Mexican pastries that many of us had never tasted before. At this point, I fear I may be in danger developing an unhealthy Pavlovian response connecting the music of Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon and the taste of delicious, regional baked goods.

Keep things in perspective
Pete Fanelli, trombone

Sure, you had to get on a bus at 3:00 a.m. the past few days to drive to the airport, so you’re working with only a few hours of sleep. Not to mention, it was a nightmare to reschedule those students, missed classes, and your day job back home. You haven’t eaten fresh vegetables in a week, you left your wallet in a taxi, and you found a scorpion in the hotel shower. Despite all the hardships (read: adventures) of touring, keep the big picture in mind: You’ve been given the opportunity to explore new places, play music, and spend time with wonderful people. What could be better?

Never turn down an invitation to eat, drink, or dance
Deidre Huckabay, flute

Yes, you have an important rehearsal early tomorrow morning. Yes, you had six or seven of them today, too. Under normal circumstances, you would forego a glass of beer and another taco, you would graciously excuse yourself and get back to work. You’d get to bed early, wake up and take your vitamins. Under normal circumstances, you might just make a brief appearance at a dance club, say all the necessary hellos, and get out before midnight without breaking a sweat. But these are not normal circumstances—thankfully! When will you next enjoy a frosty Negra Modelo in the exact context in which it was intended, alongside a succulent pork taco? When will you next get to dance with every single member of your orchestra in turn? When you’re on the road and someone offers you food, drink, or dance—if you hesitate to decline, it means that you should say yes.

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