We picked up our piano tonight, and as fortune would have it the evening played itself out in ways that makes me feel that life is always worth living… Because of a little bad luck… Or was it?

I was given the piano by my good friend and colleague, Jon Sonneberg and his generous parents. The piano is an old upright, and yes I mean old. 1920s? 30s? I went over to their house on Friday to take a look at it and I had some reservations about its size. My daughter and I both wanted it in the house. We picked out the spot and began to clear it, making room for the upright. I was not sure how we were going to get it in the door…

I cannot tell you how happy we were thinking about that piano. One key stroke was all it took. As the sound of the sympathetic resonance flowed through my heart, I knew I loved that giant thing. It was alive, it was lonely, it needed someone to coax a few tunes out of it still… So it was agreed that we would have a piano mover pick it up today and the groundwork began…

When we met the movers at the Sonnenberg house, we were nervous. I was still unsure of how we were going to pull it off. You have to realize, this thing weighs 900+ pounds! The movers were great, and they did a stellar job of loading the piano into their truck. It looked so easy, and I felt a tinge of hope, and at the same time the fear was creeping in…

I hate it when I’m right and I don’t want to be. Seriously. It was really upsetting. If the Sonneberg house was a piano mover’s dream, my house it hell. First, the movers could not come up the driveway because it is a steep incline and their truck would get stuck. We had to wheel the piano up the street and up the driveway from the truck. We literally wheeled the piano on the street! It must have looked funny to those driving by… But we made it… Almost.

When the mover saw where it was to go he gave me the bad news. There was no physical way were were going to get the piano into the house unless we had 10 people, a crane, and who knows what else. The width of the piano was just an inch off on my stairwell, and because of the fence (iron of course) we would not be able to move the piano inside. Now what? Well, the studio (a converted 2-Car garage) was the logical choice, but there is a boat load of equipment and a couch in there. Not to mention that the piano would not fit through the front door of my studio. But the challenge was now that I had secured the garage doors so they could not open, and the sun had now gone down.

So we wheeled the piano in front of the stairwell, and there it has to stay until morning. We have no choice. My daughter and I were rather sad. And yet, there it was, this giant behemoth of sound sitting under the starlit night. What now? Well, you play of course.

Actually, she played, and I elected to walk about the sidewalk and the neighboring houses ( I decided she should bond with it first). I looked up at the stars, and I simply listened to that sound as it came from all around me. And all at once this rush of life hit me. This is the way it had to happen. I walked over and I said to Samantha, “I know you are sad it won’t be going in the house. But here we are, and isn’t it cool that the first time we get to play this piano is under the stars?” She agreed, and she played for what seemed like a half hour. I wandered about again looking up. I thanked the universe, the creator, and who ever else that was watching from above. And then the music and the stars took me away and tears streamed down my face. I could not hold them. I stood out in the cold night and gave it a good cry. It really was that beautiful. For Sam, her first night with the piano was under the stars. For me, it was hearing her play under the stars.

In the morning, we are going to be very busy. I have to get it into the studio. For now I’m going to go check on it…

 

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