I’m not really sure what tone this post should take. It could be sad or happy. The best word would be bittersweet, I guess.
The times they are a-changing, and with those time we too must change, make adjustments, and relinquish physical objects that hold many memories.
It was a big day at my parents’ house, Husby and I were there to give support and provide assistance. I could say it was the day the music died, but it’s more accurate to say it was the day the piano found a new home.
The piano cost $400 when it was purchased new. I have no idea what year that was. It was owned by the Sisters of St. Joseph, the nuns who taught school and gave the children of St. Mary’s school piano lessons inside the convent. Oh that convent! That’s another story though. The sisters eventually passed it on/sold it to my mom’s aunt and uncle. I have no idea how long they had it, but at some point, almost five decades ago the piano was given to my parents and found a place in my childhood home.
It’s an old piano and a very big one at that – a Stark upright grand. The room in which it was housed was dubbed “the piano room.” My mom played that piano for pleasure for many years and taught me and my sister how to play until we got so good we needed instructions from other people. Oh the countless scales I practiced, and moved from reading music for Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to the works of Chopin, Bartok, Bach and many other great composers.
Alas, the time came when the piano room must once again become a bedroom, which it was before the piano arrived so many, many years ago. In order for it to become a bedroom again, the piano had to go. Away. Out of the house.
Donated to Keys for Kids, easier than selling and given to a wonderful charity, the piano left my childhood home. The moving guys were fabulous and did the job without a nick to the walls or dirt to the carpet, and in record time.
Piano movers amaze me. I know they do it every day, but still. One of the guys moving the piano injured his back on the last job – he got to carry the bench out to the truck. But he also got to be the spotter/reinforcement as the piano was wheeled down the ramp.
I had a little chat with one of the mover guys, telling him I learned to play on that piano. He told me a couple of stories about the pianos he’s moved. One was of an old woman who’s husband played, and when he died she donated the piano to Keys for Kids. She cried the whole time they moved that piano out of her house. It was as if the last remnant of her husband left her house with the piano. My heart nearly broke. The mover guy said they see lots of cases like this, and I feel like they’re compassionate and gentle when they move these pieces of history and personal attachment.
Away goes the piano of my youth. I wasn’t overly emotional about it as I have two pianos in own my house. The thing is, I haven’t played in years. I was damn good at the keyboard, and there’s no reason I shouldn’t bring more music to my house and to my life.
This event, my witnessing and support of the removal of the piano of my childhood, has inspired me to take to the keyboard again while I’m able. Music is divinity, and I think my parents would be happy and proud to see me play again. After all, it was their piano that introduced me to the glory of music.
P.S. to Mom and Dad ~ After my time with you during the piano removal I saw a black squirrel run across my back yard. Seemed to be a sign. Diggy says make that room into a bedroom again. It’s right and good.