It was November 2011. I felt a certain urgency about getting a piano. Pianos, especially large acoustic pianos, are not your usual thrift store impulse buy. Due to their size they require quite a bit of coordination and effort to get from point A to point B so piano impulse buys are probably rare. However, my purchase of a piano might be as close to an impulse buy as one can get. I felt this great need to have a piano in my house. It was a hobby I had let go after collage and I felt that if I did not listen to the impulse then I would probably never go back to it again.
For two weeks I scanned the local thrift store, waiting for a piano to arrive. But none came. After some inquiries I found myself in the garage of a retired carpenter who was selling his daughter’s piano that he had refinished. And that is how the 800 lb. piano came to be situated in my living room. I named her Florence after Florence and the Machine–a band whose music simultaneously inspires me to play and then cripples me with jealousy. Such seems to be the nature of art making.
Well, it has been nearly two years and Florence is on her way out, and I am looking at purchasing an electric piano. I needn’t go into the reasons for the change. I don’t know what to attribute my musical resurgence to, but I feel that it is directly linked to the purchase of that beautiful, massive piano. If I had not listened to those impulses I don’t think I would be singing much now. No would I feel the freedom to pick up other instruments like the violin, dulcimer and bodhran. So it is with very mixed feelings that I let go of her. I feel lucky–or blessed rather–that I had such a beautiful instrument in my house, and I truly hope the piano will now go to bless another soul. While I am sad to part ways, I am happy that I began the journey.