Monday, January 7, 2008

I took Small Son to his first piping lesson on Tuesday night. Next to his chair while he was waiting his turn was a book about the Loch Ness Monster, his favorite monster in the whole world. That really helped. I found a book about Sterling castle, which looked suspiciously like a castle relic we saw in a recent movie about Nessie. His instructor is Ian. He did very well, coming out after 30 minutes being able to read music, as well as being able to play all the notes AS NOTES instead of Dying Duck Noises. On the way home we talked about practicing schedules and agreed that 5 times a week, 15 minutes a time, would be about right. I told him a couple of times that the more he practices, the faster he will get on pipes. And I told him about Nicholas. Nicholas is a young kid--about 13-- who is now playing with the Grade III band. He started with the Grade IV like everybody does, and lasted there for about 2 months before being promoted. I don't know when he started lessons, but his practicing got so that when his parents wanted to punish him for something, they would take away his PC, and later his pipes. He was practicing during all his free time. I mentioned to his mom that I felt sorry for the neighbors. She said they have a neighbor who tried to learn to play the bassoon or some other such obnoxious instrument, and he used to practice in the middle of the night, keeping the whole neighborhood awake. They asked this neighbor several times to adjust his practicing schedule, but he never did, and he finally gave it up, to the neighborhood's delight. Now the neighbor is complaining about Nicholas's practicing. Nicholas' mom doesn't feel bad at all!

Small Son also wondered when he could get his first set of pipes. I mentioned opening a savings account, putting $1 out of every week's allowance into savings--saving up. This did not sit well. But you can't have it all. I suggested he do lessons for the required 2 years and then decide if he wanted to continue. I heard a small but determined voice from the back seat: "I don't think I'm going to quit."

There you have it, right from the horse's mouth.

Band was great. I was late because I had to take Small Son home first. I didn't mess up anything too badly, and even played through Blue Bonnets 3 times fairly well. I never even got pointed to (which means "stop playing, you're doing horribly"), so I may get to play that in the concert!Wah-HOOOOOO!!!!

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