From left field…

Things are slow at work this time of year, which is why i choose not to burn my vacation time.  Always best to use your discretionary leave when things are busy*.  i’m putting in a solid 5-6 hours a day.  It’s quiet.  i read online newspapers and catch up on e-mail.  People bring in cookies.  i get paid.  Life is good.
 
Today on my lunch hours hour, i was getting a manicure at Big Gay Chuck’s Big Gay Hair Salon, where Tonya, my tattooed, biker nail tech, does her business.  The salon was hopping with women getting gussied up for the holidays.  Chuck was playing a holiday music mix, and none other than James Brown was gettin’ his holiday mojo on when i came in for my appointment.
 
Tonya and i chatted a bit, and then she was exchanging holiday “I’ve still gotta’s” with one of the other clients.  Talking about a roomful of presents to wrap, stocking stuffers yet to be purchased, and meals to be planned and prepared… No longer my world, so i sort of zoned out…
 
And then i heard this…


 
Go ahead and hit the play button – you’ll likely have to go to YouTube to see it…  i’ll wait…
 
i am, at my foundation, a hillbilly.   Although i’ve had some musical training, and have exposed myself** to the fine arts on numerous occasions, i’m generally not a huge fan of classical music.  i can listen to it, appreciate it – certainly a live performance can inspire me.  But when it comes to classical music appreciation, i’m a noob…
 
But there is this piece – the love theme from Cinema Paradiso.  My father’s favorite film – we watched it together, and cried together.  It reminded him of his family.  Of the village in Sicily where his parents were born.  The place he was never able to visit.  
 
When he died in 2002, i had to have it played for his visitation.  My daughter taught me about Limewire, and i stayed up all night downloading the music i needed.
 
And i stumbled upon this version.  Itzhak Perlman makes that fiddle wail in agony. This piece overwhelms me.  It never fails to make me weep…
 
Tonya started laughing when she noticed the chicken skin on my arms as she buffed my nails.  Asked me if i was cold.  As the song finished, she looked up and saw me crying…
 
“What’s the matter, hon?”
 
“Nothing.  i still miss my Dad… and sometimes it just sneaks up on me.”

By the time i got around to planning our trip to Sicily?  He was too sick to go…

~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

* Yet another reason i am astonished that my organization continues to have me serve as a mentor for the young scientists and engineers.  Do they really want me to train the next generation?
 
** No.  Not at the philharmonic.  But i have gotten partially nekkid on stage in the name of the arts…

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