Thursday, 10 January 2008

The Sound of Music

Thank you everyone who left me a nice message or emailed me after my gym humiliation yesterday. I really appreciated it. I've been fairly confident about the way I look for years now but I could feel myself getting into a spin yesterday and it was horrible how quickly the I Am Crap feelings started to resurface.
But anyway. We won't talk about that any more because I am not crap and I am definitely not obese so the gym prat can shove it up his trackie bottoms (and a bit further).

MUCH better news today is that H-t-b has sorted out picking up my Christmas present. And oooh, it's a good 'un. Ages ago, I mentioned to him that I used to play the piano. I was never a Mozartette or anything, the pinnacle of my playing ability was 'My Girl' by Madness but you know, I enjoyed it and that was good enough for me. So lovely H-t-b thought he'd get me some piano lessons as a Christmas present, and phoned up a teacher.

"Well, I can give her lessons," the teacher said, "but there's not much point if she doesn't have a piano to practise on."
"Oh," said H-t-b. And as pianos cost a couple of grand, he thought, Well, that's that, then.
"However, I do know someone who's giving a piano away for free," the nice piano teacher said. "I'm going round to have a look at it later. I'll give you a ring if it's all right, shall I?"

So all I know at this point is that H-t-b keeps disappearing to take calls and make calls in this annoyingly cryptic sort of way. We'd been to see some friends the weekend before Christmas and on the way home, he drove a different way. "Just got to nip into this pub to see someone," he said, pulling up on a dark street. "It's about your present."

Obviously I was beside myself with curiosity, especially as he came out empty-handed. "What is it? Who did you meet?"
"Oh, just someone called Emma," he said mysteriously. "And that's all I'm telling you."

Then, on Christmas Eve, a van drew up outside our house. "Just popping out for a while," H-t-b said, trying to be all casual about it.
"Where are you going? What's in that van?" I asked. "You're not off to see this Emma again, are you?"
"I'm not saying," he replied. "I'll give you a ring when I'm on my way back. You and the kids will have to go into the kitchen while I bring your present in, okay? Otherwise you'll see it."

To cut a long story short, a pub across town was being refurbished and didn't want their (perfectly good) piano any more. They were actually going to dump it in a skip! So H-t-b had arranged to take it off their hands as a prezzy for me. But unfortunately the owners of the pub had gone Christmas shopping when H-t-b and the man with the van turned up so they couldn't get in. Man with the van had to go after a while ("me missus will kill me if I'm out much later on Christmas Eve") so H-t-b came back looking rather miffed. "I thought it was all going a bit too well," he said.

He drove me round to the pub later so I could see it at least. My very own piano. And he's rearranged a man and van so that they can get it on Saturday. This Saturday! I am so excited about getting my fingers on those ivories. Oh, it will be Christmas carols around the piano next December, I can tell you. In the meantime, I wonder if I can still remember the chords to My Girl?


JJ said...

Oooh, how very exciting and what a really great gift. Hope you enjoy (it's nice to learn an instrument as an adult as you actually want to do it as opposed to being nagged by a parent to practice!)

Lane said...

That is the sweetest thing I've heard for many a while! I think I've said it before but - you've got a good 'un there:-)

Happy tinkering!

Rowan Coleman said...

what a lovely gift. A¬ good gift from a husband is so important, I think I've finally drummed this into my husband after the footspa/valentine's day gift incident. Some men need more guidance than others.....Also my I say I LOVE the new cover of you new book. Very stylish and new, fabbissimo.

Pacha said...


That is lovely! You have a piano! That is fantastic! Enjoy your lessons...

My kids tell me to stop it when I play the piano...I never did play 'My Girl' by Madness (but I did a good 'Imagine' by John Lennon)...


Now your fingers are going to get some exercise too! Make sure you pratice your scales!

Lucy Diamond said...

Hi JJ, it is SUCH a good gift, I know! A huuuuuge surprise. And there was me thinking something dodgy was afoot when he disappeared into the pub that first time. I am really looking forward to learning to play again.

Hi Lane, definitely a good 'un. I will be tinkering with joy!

Hi Rowan, glad to hear you've got your husband straight on the good-present front! And thanks for your nice words about my new cover - I am really chuffed with it so glad you like it too!

Hello Pacha - ooh, Imagine, must see if I can get sheet music for that. And I'd forgotten all about practising scales... The joys!
I do feel very rusty, I have to say. Might have to stick to Chopsticks for a while before I tackle 'My Girl' again!

Caroline said...

A perfect gift for your new home.
I rather think you're putting down solid roots .. trying to move a piano anywhere is an absolute nightmare!

Oh and children playing it at 5:32am ... just perfect too.

I love my piano. Very very very much.


Lucy Diamond said...

Ahhh, all these piano players coming out of the woodwork! Caroline, if you've got My Girl can you do me a copy and post it with my badge? :) Only joking.

I hadn't thought about that 5.32 dawn chorus on the piano thing. Eeek! Something for the neighbours to hate us even more for, I'm sure!

Leigh said...

You lucky thing! What a lovely HtB.
I have the opposite problem, being a piano that I've had since I was eight, and can't bear to part with. I've not played for over ten years, but it makes for a good photograph stand. One day, maybe, I'll have time to practice again...

Shauna said...

OH what a man... how sweet :)

ChrisH said...

vtgmhAh, what a lovely story! Makes up for the horrid experience at the gym.

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

Yes, a great antidote to the gym nastiness. And another wonderful procrastination opportunity ;-)

Lucy Diamond said...

Leigh - lol at the photograph stand! I can see mine going the same way when the novelty wears off!

Hi Chris - indeed. Just what I needed!

Zinnia - no, no, must not procrastinate any more! What with the Sims and the gym, my writing time seems to be dwindling by the day!

Lucy Diamond said...

Oops - sorry Shauna, I missed you from my list! I have got your book on order btw, I can't wait to read it, the reviews on Amazon are so fantastic!
And yes, what a man, what a man, what a man, what a mighty good man...

Vicky said...

oh your h-t-b is SUCH a star!!! :D its great to have such a thoughtful and loving man isn't it?! enjoy! i've always loved piano, never learned myself though.