Monday, April 07, 2008

Memory Monday

Today's memory is not so dark as the last one.

11 years ago this week, I met my husband.

It was a Saturday, April 12, 1997 (April 12 falls on a Saturday this year, too!). I was part of a group called the Danbury Brass Band. I'd only been part of it for a short while. My friend Gus was a drummer for our group (despite being a brass band, we still needed a rhythm section from time to time). On this particular Saturday, the Danbury Brass Band (DBB) was one of several performing groups at the Brass Music Festival and Conference. It was held at The Lighthouse.

The DBB was playing a concert to promote our trip to Bermuda in the summertime. IT was an early concert. Most of the DBB were traveling together from CT. Since I lived in Wappingers Falls, NY, it was easier for me to take the train into NYC from there, rather than drive all the way to Danbury, CT (an hour east), then take a train to NYC. I had NO idea where I was going, I did the best I could. I got off the train and had to hike at least a dozen blocks to get to The Lighthouse. (I could have taken a different train and gotten off right at the site...oops!) I was carrying a trumpet case, wearing a blue button-down oxford and a crazy tie (our "uniform), so I must have looked...well, I suppose I didn't look TOO odd in NYC! Anyway...I hurried, since our group was performing first that day...9:00 a.m.

After our performance, Gus and I wandered around. I was in absolute heaven, having never experienced a brass conference before. It was awesome to try out different horns, listen to great recordings, check out books and solos. Having Gus around was nice...someone to talk to...but he was a percussionist...not a brass player, so I really couldn't talk to him about the merits of this mouthpiece versus that one...or why I thought this horn played better. In the same way he'd never be able to discuss most drumming stuff with me, I suppose.

By the time we'd made it through most of the exhibits, it was lunch time. We got a bite to eat. I know he was ready to leave by that time, but I wanted to stay and watch a few of the performances in the auditorium. I saw a group called The Titus Trumpet Ensemble, from the U.S. Military Academy (USMA) at West Point. Gus was a member of The Hellcats, the Field Music Group for The USMA Band. I showed him the schedule and we decided to stay and watch them perform. He pointed out the folks he knew from The Hellcats...those he knew were in the concert band, others in the Jazz Knights.

After their performance, we went around to meet them. Gus introduced me to most of them. Scott was one of the people I met. Scott was also a member of The Hellcats. All of a sudden, I had someone to talk to about playing trumpet. My life had been at loose ends...I'd been thinking about joining the Army, about entering the band field. And here was an accomplished Army musician...a TRUMPET who could teach me what I needed to know. But I was scared to ask anything.

So, we talked a bit, wandered a bit, discussed the merits of this mouthpiece versus that one; talked about our favorite pieces. We probably spent an hour or more together. Scott was easy to talk to, quite knowledgeable about the trumpet, and when he would pick up a horn to play, I was SO impressed...he was REALLY good!

His group was preparing to leave (they'd driven down from West Point as a group) so I sat with him and asked him if he gave lessons. I told him I'd be willing to take lessons if he gave them, and told him what I intended. He said he'd teach me "the book" and I would know exactly what I needed to pass the Army auditions. We ended the day by exchanging numbers.

And then I chickened out about calling him. I put it off...I dialed, then hung up. I don't know why. Maybe it was the fear of the unknown...but I didn't call. Until Gus told me that he asked if I was going to call, did I still want lessons. That gave me the needed nudge. So I called. And the rest is history.

Do YOU have a memory you'd like to share? Participate in Memory Mondays with me! Just let me know you've posted a Monday memory, and I'll be sure to let everyone know!

1 comment:

Jodi said...

Thanks for sharing that! I don't think I had ever heard how you and Scott met, but I had wondered. Maybe I will think of something to share next Monday....