2007-07-01 - 8:41 p.m.
The girls have amazing hearing. They were all up in beds playing with toys and reading trying to go to sleep. I put them down at 6:30 as they had not had naps and had run ragged all day so I assumed they's be out cold after baths, dinner and stories.
However the sun being bright made that not happen. Raitlin did doze a bit. Katie also dropped off for a nap. However around 7:30pm Alexy ran out of her bed and disturbed the girls in the room, wanting to sleep there with them.
They all behaved staying in their rooms all through the lovely quiet dinner that Katerina and Soren and I shared with two of our Mexican guests. It was lovely to have a small group here tonight as the others are all off to a picnic they were invited to after rehearsal today. They will get dropped off by a neighbor later.
What was hilarious was that at the inquiry "Would you like some ice cream" all four little girls suddenly emerged.
So I let them join us for ice cream. (Actually the Mexican boys politely declined and went off to bed as they are just exhausted after two days of playing and adjusting to jet lag.)
After all the kids had ice cream, Katerina taught them part of the rhythms to a piece called something like the "variations on a rhythm of the bus in motion"
Or some similar very long name referring to the sounds on a public bus in the city in Venezuala.
The piece was the opening of the World Music Preformance last night in Leesburg. It was just incredible. That first piece of percussion of these seven Venezualan young people was stunningly choreographed an incredibly beautiful. Think STOMP which was an influence in their work. The instument presented first was THE BODY
Then the percussion was accentuated with drums, first a very steady beat which was the heartbeat of the preformance, impeccably played by a girl who never missed a beat while gradually a variety of percussion instuments joined then left the steady beat. It was like the rhythm of the rollng of the wheels with the stops and the cacophany of people coming and going as it stopped and went. That analogy of the bus applied to this second piece... I have no idea what it was called, but it is apt.
It was just beautiful.
The vibraphones, the congas... the brillance of starting out only with drums beating and simply yet dramatically moving from the most basic and first percussion instument of the body- its physicality and voice cojoined in song, in community, and then moving to a simple drum with the beautiful effect of merely playing as soft as possible then as loud and possible, the cadence rising then falling-- and them moving into the variations of the drama of each new instument's voice rising then falling, then cresting again.
It was a remarkable song of the pulsating of life with tension then relaxation and the remarkable emotional connection that draws in each listener.
I though then that should have been the closing piece of the concert, for I was left awed knowing nothing coming afterwards could possible be as powerful and moving as that.
Yet I was wrong.
The Argentinian violinists played with such beauty and emotion that evokes sadness and joy that again touched me as hearing live music has not done in years.
So tonight I write as after our ice cream, my six children sat joyfully at our kitchen table and delighted in creating a cacophony of rhythms mimicing the Venezualan youth to the best of their ability. For only about 10 minutes the delighted in the patterns and creation together.
That ten minutes was enough.
I hope other familys have the delight of such a moment.
I am so grateful for this gift of music and friends in our lives this week. Katerina is thrilled to be playing with some of her old friends. Its been wonderful for me to connect with some of the other mothers whom I would chat with on that bi-weekly basis as our children were at lessons and orchestra rehearsal. Katerina is keeping up nicely even though she is a bit rusty. The little girls are just overjoyed with sharing of our lives with our visitors as well as enjoying the music. (Although they are in bed when the musicians leave in the AM and are in bed when they return... they have met them at the concerts and in the few moments when the girls have snuck out of bed to meet our guests!)
Its an absolute blast! We all are enjoying the learning of Spanish. Katerina said the conductor today started talking in Spanish and it really helped her to get used to it.
This whole experience is just amazing. Many of the families have been host families for the past four years and rave about it being one of their favorite things to do all year. Our house has more guests than anticipated as another family came down with chicken pox so rather than the two Mexican boys we also have the Venezualans who were suppossed to be with another family. However I have had friends help with transportation and entertaining and even feeding our guests so this has ended up being a communal project with lots of support from my friends. Its really a wonderful experience for them all and they are thanking me for bringing such a marvelous experience to them.
Back to tucking the girls back into bed! I let them play tic tac toe for the past 20 minutes as this is one of those inspirational moments I just had to write of!
NOt sure why this just came to mind, but I can hear the voice of my jembe teacher as I entered a restaraunt where he played bellowing out exhuberantly in such a joyous welcome for me that I had never before nor since experienced "Mo's in the house!"
and know that is the title of this entry.
Thank you PAPA He may not be in the house.... but the energy and warmth of spirit he shared with me, and the place of peace I entered when I drummed and played Jembe was just evoked yet again. It is a place I have not been at in a long time.
Its a place I have been longing to return to.
And tonight I finally have arrived.
I know I have come full circle in healing of some wounds. The healing of those drumming circles came to mind as I wrote the way the pen in hand, or fingers on the keyboard lead me to places I never expect if I am open to allowing that to happen. Much like life: if we are open, our intended life's path can't help but be the one for us.
There was a time I chose to give up my jembe rather than look at it with the torn skin. The skin of that instument was akin to the part of me torn and ripped apart ... yet that spirit can never be destroyed. I don't have that jembe phyically here, yet all it offered me as a conduit that it was has laid dormant and is now rising again - soaring from the ashes in re-birth.
In the past week I had an artist I view as prophetic and full of wisdom and joy and peace of knowing we are more than our selves, and more than we all know say the words to me "Your creative work is about to spring forth. You're creative work is about to be productive -- you are a writer?" I hadn't yet told him I was a writer in any capacity at all, yet I had thought somehow that's what her was referring to. I said "Yes"
Then I read my horoscope for the first time in years. It said something to the effect of "You have stopped speaking the words you believe loved ones in your life wanted to hear and your voice has emerged"
To which I looked at him a bit taken aback, and he said to me " I knnow it sounds a strange question. I don't know why I am to say this, but I have been divinely told to do so. Do you journal?"
To which I said "YES"
He said " I have been told to tell you to keep doing so. Write a list of Pros and Cons. It will help you know what to do. And I don't know if I am the first or the third person to tell this to you KEEP JOURNALING."
To which my eyes welled up, I looked at him and said "One person told me I would create something by writing, and my horoscope said My voice is emerging.... so I think that makes you the third."
And he said as I stood there overwealmed "Its a moment. One of those moments" Which I undertood.
My life of late has indeed been grace filled, and thankfully filled with such moments.