Today I made arrangements for my piano to be removed from its place in storage in Vancouver and picked up for repairs. This is a big thing for me.
The piano is a heritage piece built by hand in the 1880's and purchased by my maternal ancestors soon after. It was eventually passed down to my grandmother who had a musical ear and learned to play it by ear. She used to play professionally as a teenager.
My grandmother passed it along to me because I showed an aptitude for music and had started taking lessons but had nothing to practice on at home other than a cardboard mock keyboard. Besides, my grandfather had died and she had to move out of the bungalow. I did take lessons for a few months and practiced regularly on the antique family heirloom for a few months.
I stopped studying because I had no support. My parents did not take me seriously and my father ridiculed me. Actually, they never had the piano tuned and that's why it sounded bad. They neglected it as they did everything, so that the piano sat in the unfinished basement. My father had planned to renovate enough space in the basement for us to play with our friends but he had a jealous streak and soon adopted the habit of blocking our development whenever he could. He discontinued the renovations, and all attention to the home and foolishly diverted his surplus income to dubious investments and donations to the Christian Businessmen's Association. He especially did not think much of girls, so he preferred to buy a full-sized pool table and plunk it in the room where the piano was kept, though there was little space to move around the table and in front of the piano. The piano continually got nicked and scarred.
I eventually obtained the piano and moved it in with me. My father assumed he was giving it to me, but in reality it and other antiquated furniture passed down from my grandmother were mine. As soon as I got it, I had it tuned. The tuner played a full piece on it when he finished his work and it was the most incredibly beautiful sound. It is also a majestic looking and finely crafted piece of furniture.
Since it came back into my possession, it has been in out of storage a couple of times, and it has been stored in a warm and dry container since I moved to Korea. I've been conflicted about what to do with it, and what to do with all my things that I've been kept in storage because I have been waffling about my return to Canada, both when I'll return and where I'll resettle.
I guess the work I've been doing on goal-setting, thanks to Dottie Billington and her wonderful book, has prompted me to do something about the piano at last. I'm afraid I'll have to give it up, unless a friend or family member agrees to hold onto it. Anyway, I contacted a piano restoration service this morning and arrangements are under way for the storage company to release it to the piano servicing company in a couple of weeks. Whatever happens, I'll pay what I must for the restoration and find a good home for my piano. Though remembering the piano brings forth some unpleasant aspects of my past, playing for myself at home when I was an adult was always a pleasure, and others around me enjoyed it too.
I wish I had a picture of the piano to post here, but I don't. The piano technician will provide one in a few weeks, though.
I am ready for this step and I am glad to be taking care of this outstanding matter. There is no use in delaying. I had delayed until I saved enough of a surplus fund, though I had figured I'd be handling the matter once I returned to Canada. The more I plan my future lifestyle, however, the more I can see that it will be a hindrance. I likely won't settle permanently back in Vancouver, and I may move quite some distance from Vancouver. Furthermore, I will likely continue to live a somewhat transient lifestyle.
Last night, I had the impulse to make rice pudding. Rice pudding is something that brings back memories of happy times during my youth. My mother was a good cook and used to make rice pudding regularly, to our delight. She taught me how to make it.
I didn't have the ingredients to make it as she used to. I used some lemon flavored sweet drinking yoghurt and skim milk, and replaced raisins with almonds. I had very little sugar on hand. In the end, it worked out well enough. Counter to some of the unpleasant memories surrounding my childhood, rice pudding is one of the good memories.