Growing up, I thought it was perfectly normal for a dad – who didn’t earn a living as a musician – to have numerous musical instruments in the house. Drifting off to sleep to the light strum of an acoustic guitar or a classical tune on the piano was a big part of my childhood. And having a hiding place in the nook behind a row of guitars that leaned up against the piano wall was handy. Both for games of hide and seek with friends and playing hooky in 4th grade.
That last one got me in a bunch of trouble when the cleaning lady found me, though. But that’s a story for another day.
My dad never wanted to be called a musician but he’s always had a love for learning. He took piano lessons at the same time as we did as kids and when I announced that I wanted to play clarinet in 4th grade “band” he cheered and bought me (not rented) my own instrument. Probably that same night.
And when I announced in the 5th grade that I was tired of playing clarinet, he patted me on the shoulder and added the piece to his collection in the living room. It wasn’t a surprise to see him pick it up later and try to teach himself how to play.
Since his retirement last year, my dad has had more free time for learning new things that have always interested him. Among other things, he volunteers as a homework tutor and has signed up for violin lessons. That just makes me happy. My dad is almost 70 and he’s learning how to play the violin. In fact, he plays regularly with the orchestra at his traditional Baptist church. He says he’s enjoying learning “contemporary” tunes. (chuckle)
Today we were treated to a visit from my dad…and his violin.
There was a certain little someone in the audience that was very much taken by his playing.
She was clapping in that picture, it was too cute.
He was quite smitten with his fan.
p.s. guess what else my dad brought?
He says it’s never too late to learn.