The long game.

So, if you’ve been following my blogs, you know that I have no intention of retiring. You also know that I’m doing very good with my business, lots of enthusiastic people who practice, learn and have fun. If you’re wondering about my health, I’ve never felt better. Yes, better than when I was in my twenties and smoking a pack a day and drinking beers twice a week. Gone are those days, and I don’t regret them.

On the mental health side, I am married to the woman I’ve been waiting for all my life and, let me tell you, that makes everything else very easy and palatable. For lodging: I live in a good neighborhood and a solid house.

Now, I am having a thought. I love my piano, I really do, and I looked at other piano and I still love mine. But, as I am putting the hours of practice on it, I can’t help but think about the holy Grail: the magnificent instrument I’ll fall in love with, the one with the tone and touch that will answer all my musical questions. One that’s expensive, of course.

I do not have the money for a new piano, it goes without saying. As a matter of fact, I do not have the money for a new toaster. Ok, and so? What’s it to you? If I don’t plan on retiring, I can save my money little by little and get myself a fantastic piano in a few years or a few decades, who knows? I just hope I’ll get it before I end up on my deathbed. I ain’t getting younger.

What was the point of this blog? you might ask. Here it is: if you love what you do, most likely you don’t plan on retiring. And if you don’t plan on retiring, you get to have crazy ideas.

Now, let’s imagine a story: Imagine saving some dough all your life for an amazing instrument, penny by penny, dime by dime. You save a dollar here and a tenner there. Sometimes you reflect that you’ll never get there, that you’re mad to try to catch the sun. And then, as time passes, your health is not what it used to be. You can still do the job and your success isn’t diminished, but you can feel it inside, it’s not the same. You’re getting old, very old.

Finally, you have the money, a great big pile of dough you can take to any piano store and get what you want, no matter how expensive, no matter how extravagant. You spend a few weeks, maybe even a few months trying different beasts. Some sweet, some soft, some loud, some harsh. The joy is palpable. There is a great big party inside of you. All these pianos would be fine additions to your home, but there can be only one. Pretty quickly the time comes: you chose the very piano that will accompany you for the rest of your life. You schedule the delivery. A few days later, the truck parks right outside your home. They get it into your living room. The movers leave. You’re now alone with the imposing sonorous piece of furniture. 600 pounds of music just landed in the middle of your house. Oh joy! But the excitement has taken a toll on you. You brush it off, you think you’re sweating and panting because of the emotion. You slowly get to the bench, you’re old, remember. You raise one wrinkled hand, two. It takes you an effort to do that. An almost unsurmountable effort. Then you push the keys for the first chord, the first sounds that belong to you. But all this saving and this work to get the piano has been too much, and you close your eyes and fall into a swimming pool of darkness. Oblivion sounds sweet with your new piano as you drift into nothingness. You peacefully die, your head slowly landing on your dreams.

I like that kind of story. Might not be a good blog, but I like it. I can indulge myself sometimes. Just a little bit.