Posted by fiddlepogo on Friday, November 28, 2008
Last time I was up to visit my sister, she really enjoyed the fiddle, and asked me to bring it, so I did. I was warned that there would be little kids, though.
My sister lives in a rickety old Victorian home. It has high ceilings, and the acoustics in both the dining room and kitchen were great for my fiddle. I think she particularly enjoys it because SHE was the only one in the family who had violin lessons, but she never got very far with it.
I played for a while, mostly old fashioned holiday tunes which I was in the mood for. (Good Kind Wenceslas, Christmas Is Coming, and older sounding carols- no "Jingle Bell Rock! Not this time, anyway ;^) I also played "Pop Goes the Weasel" for my grandnephew and grandniece (3 and 1 1/2), and also "Old McDonald Had a Farm", with lots of animal noises, as realistic as I can make them (they <vary> in quality, to put it mildly!) They loved them! I also got a request for "Twinkle Little Star" which I did- the kid's tune, not the complicated fiddle tune!
Then, as dinnertime approached, it became obvious that my sister had too many things going, and needed help in the kitchen more than entertainment- so I helped peeling potatoes, then after they were mashed, I put them in the serving bowl. Since the sink was full of various cooking utensils, I took the potato kettle to the bathroom shower to loosen the potato residue from the sides of the pot. Good thing I went above and beyond the call of duty there, because on the way I caught my 3 year old grandnephew opening my fiddle case! He'd only gotten it open a couple of inches, and nothing seemed to be disturbed or damage, so I figured I'd gotten off lucky! (no greasy fingers had reached the bow hair, apparently)
After dinner, my other sister who had come for dinner and I were talking and working on cleanup in the kitchen. I got out the fiddle again for her, since she has been a fan of my fiddling ever since she was about 12 or 13. And it was fine, except I think I got the bow hair too tight at first- then the little kids showed up and asked for Pop Goes the Weasel and Old McDonald again! The little boy wanted more and more, but about 10:00, the part of my back beneath my shoulder blades was saying "No more!" so I put it away.
When I was getting ready to leave, I was puzzled, because the strap on the case wasn't there. I had had it off a day or two earlier, but I thought I'd put it back on. I figured it was in the car.
But just before I actually left, it occurred to me that the 3 year old boy MIGHT have disconnected the strap before he got the case part way open, and sure enough, there was the strap lying on the floor!
He evidently has budding mechanical skills which right now are all connected with <disassembling> things!
Well, NOW I really know I have to either keep an eye on that kid, an eye on the fiddle, or both when he and it are in the same room! My sister (his grandma) did have a good talk with him about how it's expensive and not a toy, etc.
But still, it was a lot of fun playing for him and his sister- I have to work on even more children's songs on the fiddle!
3 comments on “Thanksgiving fiddle...”
Friday, November 28, 2008 @2:07:03 PM
Next time simply put the fiddle in the case and put the case seriously UP out of reach OR within your sight at all times. Or you'll end up taking a trip to the luthier for a new setup . . .
Friday, November 28, 2008 @10:12:12 PM
I actually thought of doing that when my sister mentioned the kids
on the phone- but somehow in the social interaction of arriving, I
just put the fiddle down in the same old corner where I'd always put my instruments- distraction and habit took over I guess.
Well, I know better now!
Saturday, November 29, 2008 @4:28:47 AM
You mentioned Twinkle Little Star...I love the complicated version you mentioned. Sounds nothing like the children's version. I really enjoy playing it!!
But as for your fiddle in reach of small kids...I cringed as I read your story waiting to hear the wosrt. I'm very releived to know it wasn't anything serious. I have a 6 year old and she knows to leave mine alone. But we will invite her little friends over now and again. I have an table I basically keep them on so they are off the floor. I caught one little girl pushing the top case slowly with one finger, as if she wanted to see it fall and crash. From then I either insist the kids are outside, or I move all the instraument up stairs to the bedroom. Out of sight out of mind when it comes to kids. I still have to watch them like a hawk tho.
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'"Different Versions"' 16 hrs
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