The girls and I departed on a Highway 6 road trip Sunday morning--our mission, to reach Crete by noon and crash the fellowship meal at Cornerstone Bible Church. Well, that was the first mission. (Successful!). ;o) The 2nd mission was to make it to rehearsal with a bunch of Crete High School choir alumni so that we could sound pretty when we serenaded our former choir director at the end of his final concert as the choir teacher at Crete.
I debated making this trip because we've done a lot of traveling the last few months and quite frankly I'm tired of driving. (I'm one of those people who would so very much love to be chauffered everywhere!) But I knew I would regret it if I missed it and I am so glad I went!
Pretty much my whole high school experience can be summed up in one word--music. Band, jazz band, choir, and the last semester of my senior year, swing choir--my class schedule was always packed around my music classes. I had a wonderful band teacher as well as a great choir teacher and I loved the concerts, honor bands, and contests. I would have to say--less I give anyone the impression I have this stellar singing voice--that my strength was more in the instrumental area. In spite of this, I still really enjoyed choir (and have always wished I could sing better).
Anyway, these two high school music teachers were excellent, incredibly encouraging guys and I will always have wonderful memories from their classes and all the other experiences that went with being part of a high school band and choir. Sadly, a month after I graduated from high school my band director was killed in a car accident.
That being said, there will always be a special bond with my music friends, people I have traveled to Disney World with, spent nights with in hotels during all the honor choirs/bands, accompanied for contests, and together mourned the loss of an incredible teacher and friend.
It was sooooo good to see them Sunday and get caught up!
(Hi Becky, Dana, and Tiffany!) ;o)
And it was so wonderful to surprise our former choir director. We sang "The Lord Bless You and Keep You" (acapella/four part harmony)--a song that was performed at each graduation when sending the graduating class off. It was completely fitting that at his final concert we sent him off to that particular song--one he had taught us all.
The sight of him standing on the stage listening, eyes closed, fighting back tears while we sang will fill my heart for a very long time. The drive was worth it for that moment alone.
(Circa 1998--we haven't changed a bit right? I bet some you didn't know I used to have some crazy long hair!!) ;o)
And it was so encouraging to talk to both him and his wife afterwards about "retirement." He has so many new endeavors up ahead--teaching a college class, helping new music teachers get up and going, organizing Disney World trips for other music groups . . . He's going to be busy! And his wife is back in school working on a masters degree in medical counseling to help people deal with those hard diagnoses (something their family knows a lot about--two cancer survivors!!). It made me think about endings and beginnings and how you're never too old to start a new chapter.
"The tide recedes, but leaves behind bright seashells on the sand.
The sun goes down, but gentle warmth still lingers on the land.
The music stops, yet echoes on in sweet refrains.
For every joy that passes, something beautiful remains."