Today - well, it had been a long day. Today was a day that involved many hurdles, much aggravation, and was characterized by a schedule that required Tetris like skills to manipulate. After five days home together, I won't lie – it was nice to get everyone out of the house, and return to my work schedule. But there was a lot going on today.
Two of my daughters take ballet, and they had missed a ballet class. (To be correct, they've missed three, since school began, and so tonight we decided that we were going to their first make up class.) Three of my kids stayed after school for homework club. My son had hitting camp at virtually the same time as the make up ballet class - but, of course, in a different city. My opera singer daughter had to be picked up from her school and driven to ballet. And both of these activities took place during the dinner hour, which meant that I had to make dinner ahead of time and pack it up for transport. And most of the driving went into our heaviest traffic area, in the worst time to be driving there.
I really hate word problems. I feel like my entire life is a word problem, sometimes.
When we got to the ballet school, the waiting room was jampacked with talkative parents, wild children, and so much noise that my brain could not cope. It had been a very long day and my coping mechanism just shut down. I decided that, rather than sit in the loud waiting room, I'd go to a restaurant, a place that is near the dance studio, but not in my daily travels, in order to obtain to get two gift certificates for beloved teachers for Christmas presents.
Mostly, I wanted to be in my car in the quiet.
After getting the gift certificates, as I exited the restaurant, I heard a saxophone playing. I got into my car, sat for a second, and decided that I wasn't going to rush back to the dance studio. I had 47 minutes, and I was going to enjoy it.
Even if it killed me.
It wasn't terribly cold outside, and I had a nice warm jacket, so I rolled my windows down, leaned my chair back, and proceeded to listen to an impromptu saxophone concert. I tweeted about it.
You'll have to read these from the bottom for them to make sense. (sorry!)
After listening for quite a while, I decided that I would thank him. I rooted through my car, discovered a couple of bucks, and got out to take it to him. I wondered what his story was, and I really, really hoped that I wasn't the only one dropping some bucks.
He had an open case, with a sign that said, "College student". I don't know if he was - I'm one of those highly skeptical people - but what I do know is that he was a very good saxophone player, I'm the mom of three brass instrument players who might one day stand on a street and play music for cash - although I wonder if my tuba player would be the best choice for that -
and it was the most enjoyable and relaxing part of my entire day.
Sometimes, when you feel scattered and out of sorts and there's just too much going on -
Life sends a saxophone player your way and you get a few minutes to sit, relax, and just - be. And listen to beautiful music, music that reaches through the cold night and touches the raw and hurting parts of you and helps, however briefly.
(I said on Twitter that his sign said Broke, but that part is behind his leg.)
(I asked if I could take his picture, and he gave permission.)