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 Final Chapter: Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood

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mr chips

  • Total Posts: 4715
  • Joined: 2/19/2003
  • Location: portland, OR
Final Chapter: Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 10:29 AM (permalink)
        Long time readers of the roadfood fora might remember that I love the works of William Shakespeare. Last week I achieved a cherished life goal when I saw Henry VIII in Ashland, Oregon. I have now seen on the stage all 38 plays written by William Shakespeare(whose works are collectively known as the canon.) Henry VIII is one of the least performed plays and had not been produced in Ashland for 25 years. THe play details the falls of Cardinal Woolsey and  Henry's first wife Catherine of Aragon, presents a fairly sympathetic portrait of Henry and is filled with rather spectacular scenes of dances and masques. There are also numerous references to  the ways in which Anne Bowlyn's child Elizabeth will contribute to the future prosperity of England, Shakespeare's way of sucking up to the monarchy. The play was written by Shakespeare and sometime collaborator John Fletcher, so it is something of a Shakespeare parlor game to determine which writer wrote what.
   I saw my first Shakespeare play 38 years ago(A Midsummer Night's Dream) the summer I graduated from high school. The bard's work has entertained me, inspired me and engaged me for much of that time and I have been happy to introduce both of my sons to Shakespeare and the completion of the canon is a treasured achievement for me.
<message edited by mr chips on Tue, 09/1/09 9:37 AM>
 
#1
    mayor al

    • Total Posts: 15075
    • Joined: 8/20/2002
    • Location: Louisville area, Southern Indiana
    • Roadfood Insider
    Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 10:39 AM (permalink)
    Congratulations on filling one of your life-quests, Mr Chips!  I am not a real student of the Bard, but I did enjoy Mid-Summer Night's Dream some years ago performed at the Utah Southern University Festival (outdoor stage !)

    Now tell us about your meeting with the "Vosstir".
     
    #2
      TnTinCT

      Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 10:42 AM (permalink)
      Way to go! A real achievement - what's your favorite Shakespeare play?
       
      #3
        buffetbuster

        Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 10:52 AM (permalink)
        Very cool mr chips!  That is quite an accomplishment.  Looking forward to hearing about the eating adventures.
         
        #4
          mr chips

          • Total Posts: 4715
          • Joined: 2/19/2003
          • Location: portland, OR
          Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 11:35 AM (permalink)
          TnTinCT


          Way to go! A real achievement - what's your favorite Shakespeare play?

          My favorite play is "A Midsummer Night's Dream". Richard III is my favorite history play and "Much Ado About Nothing" is another favorite.
           
          #5
            Jennifer_4

            • Total Posts: 1508
            • Joined: 9/19/2000
            • Location: Fresno, CA
            Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 11:42 AM (permalink)
            Congrats on that achievement, Mr. Chips...funny you should mention Midsummer Night's Dream.  30 years ago I was in a junior Shakespeare company and the very first play we did was M.N.D.  Thanks for bringing back fond memories!
             
            #6
              mr chips

              • Total Posts: 4715
              • Joined: 2/19/2003
              • Location: portland, OR
              Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 11:59 AM (permalink)
                Ashland has been a place where my family goes annually. This year's trip was a little different as my 26 year old son Marc joined us for the first day.
                    Ashland is approximately 300 miles from Portland near the California border. When we are seeing two plays in a day, we usually drive about half-way to Ashland. the night before our first play. This year was no exception. Our first food stop was Novack's in Albany , Oregon, roughly 70 miles from Portland. This place is a roadfood treasure, an authentic Hungarian Bakery and restaurant in very un-ethnic Albany. My favorite dish is goulash with langos bread, a type of fry bread served with garlic and apricot jam which was wolfed down hungrily by the four of us so quickly that we ordered a second. Very good sausage, chicken paprika, noodle dishes, were shared by all. The bakery is good but I have never had room for its pleasures.
                  The Novack family came Albany in 1957 and started the restaurant in 1962. The good news is that their granddaughter runs the kitchen and is reputed to be as good a cook as her grandmother.This means we may have another 20 or 30 years of great food guaranteed. I urge any roadfooder to make this place a priority stop while driving on I-5 through Oregon.
                    We stopped for the night in Rice Hill, a small community about 30 miles from Roseburg and 40 miles from Eugene. It features another Roadfood stop, the K-R Drive-In. The place has 35 flavors or Umpqua Ice Cream, a high butterfat ice cream from the area that is as delicious as any I have ever tasted. It also has huge portions,( a baby is one scoop, a small two scoops, a medium 4 scoops, and a large 6 scoops. You must have at least two scoops of any flavor. The spot had a nasty owner who wrote notes to customers telling them not to mix flavors, not to complain about taste and to avoid asking for credit to to write checks as any any employee who agreed to do any of these things would be fired on the spot. She died a few years ago and the place now takes credit cards and the staff seems less tense. My  favorite flavors are blackberry and huckleberry but I've never had one I disliked there.
              <message edited by mr chips on Thu, 08/27/09 12:57 PM>
               
              #7
                Nancypalooza

                • Total Posts: 3778
                • Joined: 6/17/2004
                • Location: Columbia, SC
                Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 12:42 PM (permalink)
                Awesome chipsie!
                 
                #8
                  mar52

                  • Total Posts: 7609
                  • Joined: 4/17/2005
                  • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                  Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 1:10 PM (permalink)
                  Woo Hoo on completeling your goal.

                  My cousin lives there yet I've never been there for the Shakespeare Festival.

                  Did you take a sip of water at the fountain?  

                  < I type as I wonder if it's still there >


                  I had the best soup ever at the Ashland Bakery and although I begged they never acknowledged by recipe request.

                  I don't blame them!  

                  Hello to Mr. Voss!

                  One of these days I'm going to meet both Mr. Chips and Bill Voss.
                   
                  #9
                    mr chips

                    • Total Posts: 4715
                    • Joined: 2/19/2003
                    • Location: portland, OR
                    Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 2:18 PM (permalink)
                    Marlene, I just wanted you to know that I might not have visited the Palm Springs area if I had known how hot it would be. The security guards at our hotel warned us not to walk around and our brief bathroom and gas stops confirmed the extreme heat. I don't blame you for not going to the desert in the summer. However I did visit Joshua Tree in November once and had a pleasant hike.  Hope we will meet.

                           The drinking fountain of Lithia Water was not working while I was there this year.
                    <message edited by mr chips on Fri, 08/28/09 1:42 PM>
                     
                    #10
                      mar52

                      • Total Posts: 7609
                      • Joined: 4/17/2005
                      • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                      Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Thu, 08/27/09 9:59 PM (permalink)
                      I understand completely.  Years ago all the merchants in Palm Springs closed down for the summer.

                      Way too hot!
                       
                      #11
                        mr chips

                        • Total Posts: 4715
                        • Joined: 2/19/2003
                        • Location: portland, OR
                        Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Fri, 08/28/09 9:56 AM (permalink)
                        Day II of our journey began with an hour drive from Rice Hill to the Quines Creek exit of I-5 to the marvelous truck stop "Heaven on Earth. This is a bastion of country cooking and was reviewed in the 1997 Stern  roadfood book. The major appeal here is gigantic cinnamon rolls, platter sized, served dripping with butter. The four of us shared one roll and it took another two days to finish this bromdignagian wonder . The omlettes and breakfast offerings are sizable and tasty but the cinnamon rolls and other baked goods are the draw and any serious roadfooder should stop here.
                             Son Marc and I spent the afternoon at "Equivocation, a new play that is making its world premiere in Ashland this summer. The plays plot is simple. William Shagspeare(sic) and his company are commissioned by the king 's chancellor Lord Cecil to write a propoganda piece about the gunpowder plot to blow up parliament. As Shakespeare investigates he learns that all is not what it seems and that the government may have lied and used torture to extract false information.
                               The play is both a great deal of fun and deathly serious. It pokes light fun at the Shakespeare mythos, makes serious points about government lies and the compromises one makes in personal and professional lives to produce a commercial art. It is a marvelous play and I predict a long and fruitful life for it.
                                Sam, Trudy and I met Bill briefly at a Mexican place in Medford called Taco Y Pollo. I had a chicken(pollo) huarache, which is basically a tostada  served on a tortilla cut like a Mexican sandal. I drank a jamaica(pronounced ha-my-ka),a hibiscus flavored ccold tea of which I am very fond. We talked with Bill but we had to bug out early because of the play. We spent the evening at Henry VIII of which I have already written.
                        <message edited by mr chips on Tue, 09/1/09 7:42 AM>
                         
                        #12
                          1bbqboy

                          • Total Posts: 4542
                          • Joined: 11/20/2000
                          • Location: Rogue Valley
                          Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Fri, 08/28/09 11:25 AM (permalink)
                          The fountain was working last night.  These guys are at the green show this week.
                           http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7KG36KK1Iaw
                          <message edited by bill voss on Fri, 08/28/09 11:28 AM>
                           
                          #13
                            mr chips

                            • Total Posts: 4715
                            • Joined: 2/19/2003
                            • Location: portland, OR
                            Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Sat, 08/29/09 9:23 AM (permalink)
                            Day II of our Ashland stayover began with me dropping off older son Marc at the bus station. He was meeting his girl friend at the airport in Portland but had been eager to see the plays and spend some time with us. He is great fun and a student a of theater and Shakespeare and was a wonderful and boon companion\ on this trip.
                                 We slept late and had a late breakfast at 'The Wild Goose", a Voss recommended place that has become a must-eat whenever we are in Ashland. Like so many northwest places, it is committed to local foods, so the owners frequent the farmers markets of the Rogue Valley and serve fresh, well made American basics on the menu. I love the Wilapa Bay fried oysters for breakfast, accompanied by marionberry muffins and local eggs. The waffles,pancakes, and bacon are fresh and local. A local artist is a waitress there and her work fills the place "The Wild Goose" represents the best of the Northwest; committed to local food, artistic, idiosyncratic and always a great experience. Once again, a place all Roadfooders ought to stop on the I-5 corridor.
                                Our afternoon play was MacBeth, a powerful production. Actor Peter Macon(MacBeth) played Othello last year and brought a strong physical presence to the role of MacBeth. He walked along  the dinner table during the banquet scene, appeared shirtless in many of his scenes(much to the delight of many in the audience), and had a powerful bass voice that brought a sense of dynamism and power to the role. This was a play filled with  movement with a charismatic lead. Sam was very excited as he had never seen a play with so much movement and style.
                                 Sam and Trudy had dinner at a restaurant  (Miguel's) next to our hotel that featured mariachi music and adequate food . Our evening play was a world premiere new translation of Don Quixote by Octavio Solis, a playwright who has had work produced by the festival and has written a couple plays specifically for the Ashland festival. This production featured a great deal of farce but had outstanding performances by Armando Duran as Quixote and  Josiah Philips as Sancho Panza. I am not superfamiliar with Quixote but I enjoyed the production.
                                 

                            <message edited by mr chips on Tue, 09/1/09 1:00 AM>
                             
                            #14
                              wanderingjew

                              • Total Posts: 7411
                              • Joined: 1/18/2001
                              • Location: East Greenwich/ Warwick, RI
                              • Roadfood Insider
                              Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Mon, 08/31/09 6:55 PM (permalink)
                              Mr Chips,

                              I'm glad you hit your goal, it reminds me of the goal I met of hitting every major league ballpark (sadly I only acheived that goal for a year and now have two pending parks I haven't hit)

                              I'm embarrassed to say that  all I know about William Shakespeare is from watching old Mr Magoo and Bugs Bunny Cartoons.
                               
                              #15
                                mr chips

                                • Total Posts: 4715
                                • Joined: 2/19/2003
                                • Location: portland, OR
                                Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Tue, 09/1/09 1:02 AM (permalink)
                                Thanks for the kind words,folks. Meeting this goal has made me very happy. Incidentally, Oregon has the highest percentage of people who have seen all of Shakespeare's work of anywhere in the United States.
                                 
                                #16
                                  mr chips

                                  • Total Posts: 4715
                                  • Joined: 2/19/2003
                                  • Location: portland, OR
                                  Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Tue, 09/1/09 9:35 AM (permalink)
                                  This years trip to Ashland was a little unusual for our family. We saw 4 plays in two days and did no other sightseeing in southern Oregon except for roadfood restaurants that long-time roadfooder Bill Voss has recommended in the past. The visit to familiar haunts was reassuring and a lot of fun.
                                        Sunday(Day 3) started with another breakfast at the" Wild Goose", this time with friend Bill. We caught up with each other's lives, gossiped a bit about roadfood and frankly. just enjoyed each other's company. I breakfasted on marionberry muffins , a mimosa and excellent coffee, Bill the salmon hash, Sam and Trudy some excellent bacon and eggs. There is no better treat than local foods well prepared and it is one of the reasons I so love living in Oregon as so many places to eat have made a strong commitment to locovore practices.

                                       Leaving Bill behind, we stopped at a couple places in Eagle Point, a small town just north of Medford which has two stops essential to any roadfooder(conveniently located right next to each other). One has been featured on the Food Network and the New York Times, "The Rogue Valley Creamery" This place produces some of the artisan cheese in the United States and it Crater Lake and Rogue Valley Bleu cheeses keep winning competitions worldwide. There are always lots of free samples and very few people go away without buying anything. If you like cheese you must stop here.
                                       Next door is the Lily Belle Chocolate Shop. Jeff Shepherd is a master confectioner who named the shop after his wife and daughter. My favorite concoction has always been local Rogue Valley Pears covered with chocolate and roadfooder was lucky enough to time his visit to when Mr. Shepherd harvested raspberries from his own place and covered them with chocolate. The chocolate treats are all first rate(this time I tried chocolate covered rogue valley bleu cheese balls and fell in love). This place is a must stop for any chocolate lover.
                                    The rest of the drive was a slog but we made back to Poetland, sated with a great weekend of theater and food.
                                     
                                  <message edited by mr chips on Tue, 09/1/09 10:39 AM>
                                   
                                  #17
                                    Nancypalooza

                                    • Total Posts: 3778
                                    • Joined: 6/17/2004
                                    • Location: Columbia, SC
                                    Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Tue, 09/1/09 9:47 AM (permalink)
                                    Oh, chocolate covered pears sound wonderful.

                                    Congratulations chipsie!  One of my English electives in undergrad was a five-week 'Shakespeare on Film' course and I've really never worked as hard at anything in my life.  Back then it was a lot of BBC televised films--lots of Derek Jacobi and Jon Finch--and man oh man I didn't realize how hard it is to do Shakespeare well.  I'm glad you've seen some good stuff.
                                     
                                    #18
                                      1bbqboy

                                      • Total Posts: 4542
                                      • Joined: 11/20/2000
                                      • Location: Rogue Valley
                                      Re:Mr Chips completes the canon, visits Bill Voss and eats Rogue Valley Roadfood Tue, 09/1/09 10:37 AM (permalink)
                                      The blue cheese chocolates are the best.
                                      Don't forget, Jasper's is right down the street too.
                                       
                                      #19
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