Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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Tombstone Wednesday :)

Snippet of Fantasie-Impromptu

Image via Wikipedia

Hey! Walking here! (What movie is that?)

Did that sound like the Big City? LOL.

I’m not good at sounding as if I’m from a place where people don’t chat when they stand in line together. Where they don’t make eye contact. Where people don’t care about the lives of those around them.

I’m a true small town world guy.

Back to walking. I’ve started walking again since the temperatures have dropped below a hundred. (To be honest, I waited until it dropped below ninty.)

Yesterday my newest DIL, the musical one, and I walked in the cemetery together. I enjoy spending time with her so much! It’s amazing how good my boys were at choosing their women. 🙂

As we walked, I told her stories and pointed out where people I knew were buried. I showed her the twins headstone their daddy made, which I wish I could bring home and care for. (I need to call the city office and see if they know who those babies are and what year they were born and buried.)

We walked on and I took her to my piano teacher’s headstone. Patti Adams Shriner was her name. She’s buried next to her father (I believe) but I didn’t see a husband’s headstone. Maybe she was divorced. I didn’t think to ask when I was a kid. (I was just a little intimidated by her.)

Mrs. Shriner had suffered a broken hip sometime before I started taking lessons from her, so each time I went into her house, it smelled like Deep Heat or Ben Gay. Remember those rub-on pain relievers?

She had two pianos. A studio piano (I think she used it when she and someone else played dueling pianos) and big, black, shiny grand piano, which we took our lessons on. Imagine a tiny 2nd grader (she liked her students to be able to read before they started taking lessons.) one hand on the magnificent keyboard, plunking out, 1-2-3-rest. 1-2-3-rest. 2-1-2-3. 1-rest-1-rest.

♪♫ Here we go. Up a row. To a birthday party. ♪♫

♫♪ Dolly, dear. Sandman’s near. You will soon be sleeping. ♫♪

And all the while, this beautiful woman had tons of musical talent coursing through her. She’d play for us sometimes. When she did, it was magical. My favorite song she played was Fantasie Impromptu by Chopin.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=qa0Z6g1XJkU

That was a girlie version. The one below sounds more like the way Mrs. Shriner played.

http://youtu.be/jwZFdKHl8dY

If you listed to both, you’ll hear the difference. I liked Mrs. Shriner’s version best. I took lessons from Mrs. Shriner for six years. When I changed to another teacher, she told me I “played like I was killing snakes.” 🙂 Then explained I had a man’s touch, rather than the sweet delicate touch a woman (or girl) normally has.

I don’t play anymore–at least for anyone but myself. It takes time and practice to play well enough for others to hear, and I don’t take the time to practice. Right now, I’m trying to learn to be a good writer.

But I enjoy the little bit of knowledge I received from Mrs. Shriner. And I love good classical piano.

That’s the music to Fantasie Impromptu at the bottom of her headstone. Beautiful, isn’t it?

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