My life of many years is taking a most interesting turn. For whatever reason I’m being allowed to revisit tokens of my very young years. They return by way of activities, people, and circumstances. We have moved to Midlothian, Virginia to be near our daughter’s family and this has added to the “past” experiences.
Yesterday we attended church at West Richmond Church of the Brethren. We have been there several times and this time we also participated in the world wide Christian observation of communion with the “footwashing” and shared meal. Across from us at the meal table were our minister and a visitor from the Episcopal persuasion. Our minister is the son of a good friend of ours when my wife and I were married. The Episcopal visitor in conversation spoke about “Orkney Spring”. That brought back many memories of my orchestral experiences in the conductors’ orchestra taught by Dr. Richard Lert there in summers long ago. In the same church and at the communion service was an Indian friend whose father and my father were friends when I was a missionary’s son in India. Three doors to my varied past all in one place!
Here in Richmond I’ve joined the Richmond Philharmonic. The concertmeister is an Indian and when I mentioned the Bombay Symphony at my audition, think he said he had played in it. Also, he had performed in the Roanoke Symphony, but after the time when I was there. We’re going to perform Beethoven’s “Eroica” and Sibelius’ “Finlandia” both compositions I have played several times with other orchestras. So musically I’m also returning “home”.
Through the web and blogging I have been allowed to experience vicariously Woodstock school, Mussoorie, and the Himalayas. It’s been a hoot to read the experiences of young faculty and employees just being there for the first time! Now they can include pictures and short movies in their blogs which enhances their verbal descriptions. This past winter there was a wonderful and rare snow storm which generated some awesome photos.
Woodstock in Winter
Attending WOSA and class reunions has also contributed to revisiting this important past.
As I teach my young grandson how to “fiddle” I’m reminded of my own frustrations which my wise father guided me through. I’m not sure that my grandson will be a professional musician, but the road to musical usefulness goes through some narrow “eyes” . They have to be negotiated and the adult doing the teaching has to be patient and wise with his young charge. Pray that I have both! I would love to pass on this gift to him.
Before moving to Richmond, we had joined the Oak Grove CoB after two decades in Roanoke’s First Baptist church. That was a looping back to the denomination of both Lib and I. When we left First Baptist we visited several congregations. On our first visit to Oak Grove we were greeted by name by an old friend of my teen years! Several visits later we knew this was “home” and in some sense it will always be our "home" church.