This time last year

7th March 2021 | Concerts, Daily Life, Musings, Travel | 0 comments

It’s now a whole year since concerts started being cancelled in anticipation of the pandemic.

I remember very well that I had been to a birthday coffee party where the extended family sat around a big circular glass-topped table while our reflections ate scones and drank coffee in mirror image. I got home and there was a message from a concert society where I was to play the following week. Although we were not yet in a period of restrictions, the organisers had been reading the runes and had decided to cancel rather than wait to see if their audience turned up or not. That cancellation was particularly shocking, because it was the first and because the date was imminent and I had done a lot of practice for it.

After that came a cascade of other cancellations, Concerts, talks, masterclasses and festivals fell over like a row of dominos. None of the organisers was in touch with any of the others, which made it feel even weirder – they were all just assessing the situation and coming to the same conclusion. Usually I keep a pencil beside my (paper) diary, but now I replaced the pencil with an eraser. The pages of my diary became blank again. I started to take stock of all the travel arrangements that would have to be unpicked. And there were still two weeks to go before national lockdown.

Who would have thought that I would now find myself noting the first anniversary of that memorable week? Since mid-March last year, nobody has played my piano except me (and occasionally my husband when we decided to cheer ourselves up by playing a piano duet). I haven’t once sat by the window to listen to anyone else playing to me. I can’t even hope to get the piano tuned until the end of April! At least there are signs of spring to enjoy in the meantime.

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