Cello on the Farm

Day 20 of 365

Today was just magnificent start to finish. My son, who is 12 and dreams of being a cellist when he grows up, had an opportunity to play a little cello concert at beautiful Lone Spruce Farm here in Maine. It was so much loveliness I can’t quite express it.

I am also worn from the concert and then the talking to people after the concert. I am an introvert on the best of days, but thanks to COVID isolation, I find that I am even worse than before when it comes to mingling and speaking to people. Still, despite the tiredness of having to “people,” I had one amazing day as a cello mom.

First of all, the setting for the concert was just a dream. This farm is gorgeous with its trees and animals and a cool breeze from being on a mountain side. Our little farmstead is down in the Maine woods, so we don’t get that same lovely breeze. Second of all, my kiddo played so beautifully. I hope to have a video ready to share tomorrow, but he played Despacito on the cello just for me. He told everyone he was playing it for his mom, and when he was finished, he said, “I love you, mom.” Yeah, good stuff.

I also noticed during the little concert that one goat in particular really seemed to like the music. I have mentioned before that one of our ducks really loves the cello, and I think this goat might be a kindred sprit. I am happy to report that I have a short video of this. It’s 14 seconds of cello and farm, which is just my kind of perfect.

One additional perk of the event was that a little boy, who is just 8 years old, was in the audience. His mom said he had been wanting to see a cello in real life. She said he loves cello music but has never heard one in person. Apparently, this kiddo was counting down the hours and then minutes waiting for this little concert. Well, after the concert, this little boy had questions. He wanted to know how old the cello was, how it worked, and when my son started playing. My son showed the little boy his cello and let him touch it. I watched as my son said, “put your had right here on the cello” and then plucked the string.

The little boy pulled his hand back and in an excited voice said, “It vibrates!” I could tell this kiddo was hooked.

I told his mom to get him to cello lessons, some how, some way. I hope she listens. When a kid is this interested, you have to give them a chance, I think. I am such a big believer in music lessons for children, but that’s another essay for another day. Right now, I must go play the duck game and put the ducks to bed. I’ll have to write about the duck game soon.

I do have a quick Ruby and Kate update though. They are both doing well, though when Ruby took her break today, I snuck an egg for one last candle, and I don’t think it developed. I didn’t have time to check any other eggs because Ruby came back and demanded that I leave her eggs alone. It will be interesting to see how many chicks we get from her this week. I can’t wait to see what kind of mama she’s going to be. I hope she gets at least three or four babies.

Everybody Loves Cello

Day 6 of 365

Today was a big day off of our little farm. That’s why I am so late to write. My cello mom work started early this morning and didn’t end until long after dark.

photo credit: Janderson Tulio, Unsplash

Our son is a cellist, and he’s a pretty serious cellist. Today, my husband drove us to Augusta, and we listened to one of the most beautiful orchestra concerts I think I have ever heard. There was the drive, the rehearsal, the making of food to eat in the car, the drive home. It’s a long day at the end of a long season of 10 weeks of driving, eating in the car, sitting in the car during three-hour rehearsals.

But, truly, it’s worth it and then some. If you have never heard The Sicilienne, the third movement of Faure’s Pelleas et Melisande, give it a listen here. It’s magnificent! And I just heard it played live by an orchestra—and my kiddo played in the orchestra. I have no words for the joy this brought me.

Thinking of the cello reminds me to tell you a story about the Eastern Phoebes who have made a nest on our deck. It was just a treat watching them build that nest over the last few weeks. Those birds worked so hard. Thankfully, I learned Eastern Phoebes tolerate people very well. How fortunate am I? I mean, I won’t get too close. I promised the female Phoebe I would be respectful of her space (I have a whole other story to tell about that later), but I am still in for some joy this summer. I read they might raise two broods! I am so glad these fantastic birds chose our deck. 

Last night, when my son was practicing his cello, it started to rain, and I had to step outside onto the deck to bring in some aloe plants I had potted during the day. When I stepped outside, I could hear my son’s cello so loudly and clearly from outside the window, and then I realized the Eastern Phoebe nest was right above the window to our son’s music room. 

For a moment, I worried about the nest being so close to that loud cello music, but then it occurred to me that the Phoebes would have surely been aware of the loud cello music while building their nest. Our son plays cello six days a week for about two hours each day. Maybe, just maybe, Eastern Phoebes like cello music, too. 

“At least that A string,” Ron said when I told him what I noticed. “Yeah, at least that A string,” I thought.  

We have a duck who injured her leg on the ice one winter several years ago. She had to live in the house for nearly eight weeks while she recovered. During that time, we discovered she loved the cello. When our son would start to practice, she would come from wherever she was in the house and park herself right under the cello. She would stay there for the whole cello practice! It was amazing!

I did some research and learned that birds process music in the same part of their brains as we do. How cool is that?   

***

Oh, and I have a quick Ruby update. She’s still on the eggs and took no break today. I gave her some leftover homemade waffles as a treat. She ate them out of my hand very aggressively and then gave me a good hard peck on the hand for good measure. Oh, Ruby! 

I will candle her eggs on Wednesday.