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Mudlark Giving music for Christmas (10) RE: Giving music for Christmas 21 Nov 04

One of the best Thanksgivings I had, after John died, was singing at a convalescent hospital, really a euphemism for rest home for the aged senile. Not really ready yet for any kind of celebration, and fearing a meal with friends would just point up the fact that John wasnt there, I decided to do something completely different...and was very glad I did. For one thing, I was amazed to find the parking lot empty when I got to the hospital. Foolishly, I guess, I expected it to be crammed with visitors. So the chance to break up the long day with a visit involving music was obviously welcome, to staff as well as patients. I was offered a glass of lemonade and a large chocolate chip cookie, and then I played for over an hour. As always, You Are My Sunshine got the biggest audience response, the one song that seems to stay when all else is gone. But I went through all the campfire favs, then played 20's and 30's songs, then a few folk songs. Finally, sung out, I went around and spoke with everyone, patted shoulders or hands and left. The thank you I got from the hospital manager was heartfelt, but I felt equal gratitude, to be able to do something meaningful was a great gift to me. And I will go again this Thanksgiving, even tho later on I'll be dining with family.

The gift of attention and appreciation from regular audiences of any size always seem like a gift to me, rather than the other way around. How nifty to be able to do something you love...and get applauded for it!

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