I’ve been traveling with friends, so my last post was 6 days ago. I also haven’t played since last Wednesday’s lesson, when Teacher left with my bow to take it in for re-hairing and repairing.
We returned to Chicago Monday night, so yesterday morning before work I headed out to the suburbs to get the bow back from the shop. I took the violin along with me because when the luthier repaired it the first time he told me to check back in on the sound post after a little while. I think he meant somewhere in the vicinity of six months, but eighteen seemed to work out just fine too.
I have yet to play with it, but the bow looks fine. The grip is rewound with new black leather and either silver or nickel or some alloy – I didn’t ask because it really doesn’t matter, but the weight of the material is why he chose whichever he did. I attacked the rosin-less new horse hair with the sticky stuff last night for layer one; this morning I’ll apply more. Generally when you get a bow re-haired it comes back with no rosin on it. Of course rosin is what grabs the strings as the hair glides across them, producing the sound, so you need lots of it to get the ball rolling.
He told me the sound post is just fine – I had noticed no problems in my playing or sound production, so I assumed he would say that, but since I was all the way out there anyway it made sense to check in on the instrument itself as well. Overall, I’m happy to have my 18 month violin check-up done – I think that might be the right frequency for the bow re-hairing based on how much I play too, though I was experiencing no ill bow effects either.
I can’t wait to get back to my music. I barely touched the new Gavotte prior to this break, my first song in Book Three. So I’ll pretend my introductory week with it was a prelude, and consider this the official start. Many of us engaged in formal learning pursuits as adults talk about breaks of a week or two actually being helpful from time to time. When you come back to the game you have a freshened perspective, and your unconscious body and brain have continued to process and learn in the interim.
Also, I did encounter some musical loveliness while out in San Francisco that I’ll be writing about over the next couple of days. Of course that city is full of loveliness; it remains one of my very favorite places – my love affair with the city began when I was 20 and living in Sacramento – the first birthday I spent there was my 21st, and this past weekend marked my 39th. There’s been tons of construction over the years, and while the city has lost some of its grittiness as Silicon Valley has taken over the real estate market, the combination of the bay area’s natural beauty and the unique architecture of San Francisco conspire to make it one of the most beautiful places I personally know about. Add to that the fact that we were with some of our oldest and most special people, and you get a trip that just couldn’t have been any better.
Thanks for reading.