Conductor. Listening carefully. Interpreter of music.
“Perfavore Maestro – autografo?”
Music coming from your fingertips.
“The notes are there on the page but there is a whole universe behind them.”
“We must teach young people that an orchestra is the symbol of a society. Everyone has the same score but with different lines in front of them. Freedom must exist but should not damage or stop the freedom of the other player. This is how it should be in a society.”
“Conductors should never speak. It is up to you to interpret the music for yourself.”
“The beauty of music is that it brings people together. They may have different colored skin. Different religions. Different languages. But, they have the same heart when they begin to sing and play together. You create an immediate sort of friendship with people who may live very far away from you.”
“We have a social commitment to continue the tradition and culture that makes music valuable. It is our best weapon toward a good future.”
Our appointment comes every year at this time. Actually we have one every 6 months, but the one in June (just yesterday, to be exact) is the one I most dread. I questioned myself. Why do I dread this one so much? Here it is. This particular 6 month Doctor (the one in December is a different Doctor) is able to feel every single abnormality with her fingers. Tests are only run to confirm what she already knows. She’s THAT good. I sit and carefully watch her face as she’s feeling around and I know if I should worry, or not.
We love our Doctor. She gets the important stuff out of the way – feeling around with those fingers that are gifted with x-ray vision- and then shares, for just long enough, a few fun things about her family. Yesterday was about her grouchy son and the baseball game he did not want to play. It was Father’s Day. He wanted to stay with the cousins and continue swimming. He was mad at his mother – our brilliant Doctor – all the way to the game. When they got to the field he had everything he needed except his cleats. So, Doctor Mom dropped him off and ran home for the cleats. This kid was going to play this game if was the last thing she did! Her feeing was – if you commit to something (like a baseball team) then you should always be there to play – no matter what.
As I sit here writing this slice I have to confess….I didn’t set out to write about our Doctor’s son and his game. But, like so many other slices I’ve written this year, it evolved. I rarely know exactly what I’m going to write until I start writing. On top of that – until this very moment I didn’t realize how intimately connected my Doctor’s family life is to my respect and appreciation for her. She reminds me of the woman on those old TV commercials – the kind that can “make the bacon and go home and fry it up in the pan.” I know her son will grow to appreciate his super mom one day. For me, when I heard her tell Kathy at the end of our visit, “You look great, I didn’t feel anything in your exam and I’ll start seeing you on a yearly basis” I was so extremely grateful we found her as our Doctor.
The other evening I was driving down a very desolate country road (I knew I didn’t want to taken out of my comfortable city life). It was dusk. The road was empty, except for birds, lots of birds flying. It’s what they do. Then, bam. One of them flew right into the bumper of my car. I heard the thud. I didn’t look at my car until the next day. A piece of my bumper was hanging and there was blood smeared. But, before I knew all that, I drove along that country road wondering & thinking……
Will his bird family miss him when he doesn’t come home tonight?
What kind of bird was it? If it was a robin I’ll be much more upset.
Was he dead once he hit the ground, or did he writhe in pain?
Would he even be noticed missing when there are so many hundreds of birds flying around these parts?
Of course, I never got my questions answered. But that didn’t stop me from thinking about it for days after. I learned my lesson – keep my car driving on city roads from now on. Dodging people crossing the street is far better than “the birds” and they don’t leave blood on my bumper!
What does it mean to be blind? To most of us I guess it means – one who can’t see with their eyes. Then, of course, “love is blind” and sometimes we are “blind to the truth.” These terms describe a different kind of blind. What I saw on a street corner the other morning was another interesting interpretation of “blindness”
Three people are crossing a busy Chicago street. Two are blind – walking and tapping their canes on the cement. The third one sees. They clear the main part of the street, but they stop short of the curb. The seeing person starts talking about where they might go for lunch. One of the blind people responds and says, “ok, we can decide that in a minute, but first can we move off the street and on to the sidewalk?”
I chuckled and mumbled to myself, “who can ‘see’ and who is the ‘blind’ person here?”