Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Have you been wondering?


This is our family's Christmas gift. And that receipt under the Christmas tree was for that!
We got ourselves a piano! It is not a baby grand, and it is even not a new one. But it had to come home with us! Take a deep breath... guess what... It was made in Czechoslovakia (my DH's home land). Take another deep breath... and take another guess... It was made in the year my DH was born! It had to come home with us!

Almost ten years ago I sold my piano, while still living with my parents in Russia. It was a truly treasured possession in my family. The piano was German, made in the beginning of a century. Unfortunately, I do not recall the maker, but I vividly remember the intricate, and my guess would be, handmade carvings on the front panels, ebony keys and the charming sound of a very well made musical instrument.

I had been asking my Mom to take me to the music school for piano lessons for years. Sitting down periodically and trying to come up with a familiar tune and imagining myself to be a famous pianist. Finally, she did. I don't know why it took her so long since the music school, like so many other wonderful extracurricular activities, were free of charge in the Soviet Union. And after the teachers' tests and interviews, the committee had decided that I would be a suitable candidate for a ... violin.

The teacher was telling me that I was fortunate to be picked out for a violin class. That violin is a beautiful instrument (no arguments here!), the queen of all of them and that I would be able to play any musical instrument in the future if I conquer violin's heart. I didn't not want to play any musical instrument in the future, I wanted to be a famous pianist! And nobody seemed to get it!

Four years of torture had resulted in nothingness. I disliked the sounds I was producing, dreaded the practice time, and then finally I quit, secretly from my Mom, pretending to be going for the classes for the whole semester. And when she found out, it was too late, they would not take me back anymore, my spot had been given to another promising child.

But my dream of learning to play the piano was alive until I had to sell our German treasure to recover money to participate in the program to come to the US to work in a summer camp. I had to choose...

And now I look at this piano as mine, as if I have gotten my piano back after so many years. I hope to be able to take a couple of lessons to learn the technique and get reminded of some details of reading the music. I do remember a lot, but my rusty brain needs to be shaken a little bit.

Also, we are hoping with Mirek that at least one of our three princesses will learn to play it. Leonka wants to take piano lessons already now. As for Ivana, she has been asking to play a violin (!) since she's 3 years old. Really, a violin, and we bought a piano! Sounds like my story is repeating... but we will not do the same mistake as my parents did.

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