The Old Clarinet
For the last 20+ years, an old clarinet resided in my house. My youngest daughter played it for years when she was young and at times the clarinet and her music seemed to be what pacified her when nothing else would. Her days with the Clarinet have probably become timeless in memory and then a number of years ago my oldest grandson with having the clarinet newly re-corked and revived played it for a time in his school band until the old clarinet became a shelf ornament once again and sat alone. Actually how old this instrument is, I am not sure.
Over almost the last two months my daughter and I literally cleared out a large house and moved to an apt. with two grandsons with a tireless effort in the process to either sell, give away, discard and ultimately remove all objects which no longer served in our lives – from large objects to small the items dwindled over time along with trying to find a home for the clarinet. One woman a number of times inquired though she did not come to view the clarinet. Days before moving I heard from her again and explained we were moving and she was welcome to inquire again after we moved about the clarinet and until then we would take it with us again.
After moving, this week I heard from her again and asked her if she would like to see the clarinet. She asked me if I would take less than being asked for the clarinet so her son could play in the band. Telling her she could have the clarinet for half of what we asked and the response which was received I had not anticipated. Her husband being laid off from his job for over a year, she told me she was saving to buy the clarinet but if I had the chance to sell it before that time – she understood. As another friend of mine realized weeks ago, we never really now the true character of those who are not part of our daily lives and what we can learn in moments can change your thinking in many directions. I thought about what she said and her sincerity and desire to have this instrument and realizing her continual inquires were maybe inquiries in hope her dream for her son was still alive.
I wrote her back and told her I would make her a deal on the clarinet being that when her son no longer desired to play the instrument, instead of selling she would agree to pay it forward to another child in the future if still useable. A simple request which was gold and hope for her and her son and she agreed with more thankfulness than I expected and today I took the clarinet to where she works and made the transfer giving the old clarinet again life in the hands of another child. In this house we are always on the lookout of ways to pay if forward and it becomes pretty routine throughout our days and in turn when we needed a blessing, for a very long time one has been returned unrequested, it just happens. Until writing this no one in this family knew what transpired this week with the old clarinet traveling once again to be played and loved by another child. Band was a large part of life in our home for many years and a activity which leaves a sense of growth in a child through music I am not sure anything else compares with having the senses tuned to the music in life. So to a young boy starting a new venture in life with music, to my own children who learned to love the music, the cycle of the old clarinet now continues on and yet remains forever in the life changes it brought to our home during the tenure of it’s stay! Music like many other forms of energy which you really never own, only borrow the experience and the tool. Godspeed on the journey of the old clarinet in the travels ahead bringing it’s magic again to another.