I went back home this weekend, to the very tippy top of our state, in Boone County, a nice little town called Belleview Bottoms (near Rabbit Hash). There, I visited my friend Diana, watched deer bed down in the long silky grass that lies between Di's house and the Ohio River, watched a rainstorm make a cameo appearance and then clear completely away. It was quiet. Very quiet. With only the most peaceful sounds imaginable interfering with complete silence. I had a great weekend...yes, indeed.
Luckily, the grandboys' football team was having a car wash to benefit the Bobcats, Sammy's team, so I had the chance to see all of my grandkids and their Mommy Kasey, too! The fact that all four children were there, with their Mom tells you what kind of family my son has. They stick together, whether it's cold or hot. The older sisters were encourage folks to get their car washed via facebook statuses and simply waving people into the area behind the Burlington Burger King where the make-shift but adorable car wash was. Cooper was helping wash cars, even though he's not old enough to be a Bobcat just yet (he's still a Bearcat). I played the ukulele, by request, I serenaded Rick and Diana as they had their supper on Saturday night with Beatles tunes on the uke. Diana and I had a great time laughing and singing, and just caring for each other...that is a wonderful way to pass time, to simply care enough for the person you are with to listen to their heart and let them hear yours as well.
Yesterday, as I made my way back to Lexington, on the way home, I guess the E-string on my ukulele decided to take its own staycation and became unwound, a little wirey, a little too loosey goosey...and boy did it pay for it this morning. I didn't know until this evening, however, that it had become essentially useless for now, because I am not sure I can re-string it. Not sure if I can, but I surely know people who can help the string get back in place so that once again, the songs won't be out of tune, they'll make wonderful chords appropriate for the song they're representing.
Right now, with the errant E-string as it is, my uke sounds like a sick cow that swallowed a bassoon, like a bagpipe as the air leaves the bags...and nobody's controlling it, so it sounds out of place. It even looks a bit dreary, three strings in place, but that one weary woeful string is just hanging there, holding on with nothing more than a scant millimeter of Martin string keeping it attached to its reality, the ukulele it has become a part of while I have had the pleasure of plucking, strumming, knocking, and even using felt tips made out of scapulars, an act I am sure is not necessarily pure and kosher with the Vatican, but then again, St. Cecilia would love it, I am told, so yeah, I use the scapulars for picks, and they are wonderful. I do take care of these little strands of sin, the scapulars. I hang them in safe places and display them proudly when it's safe to do so. They're gorgeous reminders of keeping our lives in order with God's rules and Jesus' forgivenesses. They scratch our bodies if we wear them as we should, irritate the skin ever so slightly so that we might be reminded to keep a more chaste life. If you are wearing them when you die, you spend less time in purgatory, especially if you wear the purple one. That's about all I've learned about the religious aspect of those wonderful little pieces of felt.
I guess that, my lambchops, is how I've felt for the last year. I have been my own little brown scapular, scratching at my conscience at the same time I am strumming my heart so happily.
The main lesson I've learned is that you just cannot stop music once it grabs hold of your heart. Music heals. Music loves. Music hates. Music cries. and if we're lucky enough, at the end Music laughs with us.
I wish I was a ukulele string that could be straightened back into position in an instant. I wish I had a quick fix to my heartache. I wish that if I were wearing my love for music underneath my not-so-thick-skin when my heart breaks, that I would not spend so much time in personal purgatory, which is where I am now. I'm trying to resolve the chord, but it's going to take some time, I think. Maybe waltz time ;-)
pray for peace,