When we got up this morning, Rob and I did not know we were headed for The Kennedy Center. We thought we were going to a neighbor’s house about four blocks away. “I’ll get my coffee up there,” he said, and I said, “Aren’t we lucky that we can roll out of bed and we’re practically there?”
And so it was once again. My also-ran membership in Town and Country, a support group for the Orange County Philharmonic, had brought us another musical event—nearby, in our friend’s house. Twenty minutes later, with coffee and rolls beside us, Rob and I were listening to Adela Kwan, a 32-year-old virtuoso pianist, and Priyanka Venkatesh, 27, a violinist whose music literally soared. Her final piece was Bach, a 15-minute solo played without a score, but with such magic our group was mesmerized.
I sat there thinking, I’ve been a serious writer for 40 years, yet I don’t have the words to describe what she’s doing. All those memorized notes—often two of them played at once and in harmony. And with such poetry, such rich, emotional overtones. And she’s beautiful besides, swaying to the music. Rob and I were silently musing . . . besides the fact she’s been concertmaster in numerous orchestras (such as Stanford), and now pursuing a doctorate at UCI, she could be a headliner anywhere--in the world’s most illustrious concert halls. At Kennedy Center.
But here she was—here they were--four blocks away.
Afterwards, amid nearly nonstop clapping, I ran to the car for copies of “The Tail on My Mother’s Kite.” Would the young women like them? I wondered. It didn’t matter, this was the best I could give. And one for the hostess, too.
And yes, they did like them. In fact all three appeared thrilled.
On the way home I said, “These books will never make me rich . . . but each gift makes me feel rich. For that reason alone, I’m glad I wrote them.”
Rob smiled. “You go on being rich, Babe. And I’ll go on feeding us.”
“The Tail on My Mother’s Kite” : available at Maralys.com.