Tag Archives: music

The Sound of Music

“When the Lord closes a door…” 

The motion is a slam, and the view is through pains of glass, but renewed spirit will breeze through the screen

“Somewhere he opens a window…”


A Stella(r) Day 

Day 11 – A.M. (2)

In  one of my prior entries,  I explained why the start of my commuter routine was not exactly routine. The rest of my morning travel supported that conclusion. I was so busy expressing myself in writing that I forgot I was on the Express. I wasn’t listening for my stop. When I noticed how many people were lined up next to my seat, to file off the train, I realized we were already at Porter Square.

I jumped up, and with the fire lit under my ass, ran down all 150 steps into the subway. I caught my breathe only to have it taken away by the musician of the day.

(So much happens in the city that I haven’t even written about what I will term “The Porter Square Players”.  Monday was a guitarist playing A Bridge Over Troubled Waters”. I remember because I wondered how far I was below sea level at this deep subway station. Yesterday there was a saxophonist but the subway car was already in the station, so we jumped right on without appreciating all his Jazz.)

Today we had to wait three minutes for the next train. Or, should I say,  I had to get to work instead of staying for the fabulous violin concert. Commuters are in their own world and usually just face the tracks with their back toward the street players. This tiny young Asian woman, in her short shift dress and 4 inch white go-go platform shoes (so appropriate for the setting), was putting on a show. I didn’t care where I was, she had my full attention. I faced her with my back to the subway rails. She was hooked to an amp playing I’m not even sure what. It was a fast up-tempo classical rock that I’ve never heard. Slowly, others turned around too and I started to wonder if I was amongst a flash mob. She performed on the platform like it was her stage. She felt the music. So did we. Change and bills went into her case in the minute that followed. She ended her repertoire with the trains arrival.  Applause, smiles and review chatter went into tunnel. Something you don’t always see and hear but Boston does support their own.


At Providence Street, I was happier than ever to give my granola bar to Scott.

Yesterday I’d asked his name.

Homeless people shouldn’t remain nameless too.

His dirty toothless smile made me smile too.


My morning was looking up after the backpack trouble I had boarding the train.


Day 11 –  P.M.

My breath was taken away on the commute home too. When I arrived in Porter Square, just before the hour, there was no time to lose. I was on the verge of missing the commuter train. Passing the elevator and escalator, I ran the 150 steps to get to ground level and listen for the train. It’s arrival was hard to hear over my heavy breathing but I did make it. I just needed to catch my breath.

What are you running towards today?

Young at heart

“I’ve always loved being a tomboy.

What you see, is what you get.”


“I don’t want to be the next anything.

I want to be the first me.”

Avalon Young

She ‘served’ it up to me. She’s only 21 but she’s an American Idol contender.

You go, tomgirl!



Songs Remembered

Songs are the best advertisement.  They stick in your head and don’t let go.  Consider these examples:

1.  Continue the lyrics:

“Here’s the story….”

2.  Start the exercise:

Y – M – C – A !

3. Name the song:

“…sing us a song tonight. We’re all in the mood for a melody…”

4. How and where do you – – –

‘Row, row, row your boat’?

5. Identify the song writer to –

I’m a believer!

Easy, right?  Everyone that gets these correct should follow my blog. I’ll make you think about what you know and I’ll make you laugh about it too.  I’ll stick in your head and I won’t let go.

Lesson 2 – U2

I met Cristina, my Spanish ESOL student, for the second time and had her read a paragraph about our first meeting. It was only a dozen lines or so. It gave me a chance to hear her pronunciation and observe any hesitations. It allowed her to see into my writing humor and know that I was listening at our first meeting.

At our initial session, she had told me where she was from and where she wanted to go with her English.  She’d also mentioned that she liked the music of U2 and the Friends characters on television.

During the week, I’d sent her an email with a link containing the transcript of all the Friends episodes.  She was thrilled about the personal idea I shared and had already read several.  She learned words like ‘episode’. And ‘scene’ – the noun not the verb.

At our meeting, I also gave her the URL for U2 lyrics. I told her about my familiarity with the band.  I’d heard of them my first week in college when I saw four girls down the hall screaming about a new CD. They  were hugging each other when the music started. I love you too! they chanted. I thought I had just met my first lesbians.  They were on unforgettable fire.

I learned an unforgettable lesson – laughter translates.

At that point, Cristina told me about her college, her current job and her Psychology degree. It reminded me of something our trainer had taught us:

“Let them be smart – because they are. They just need help with translation.”

I gave her a journal to record her questions, thoughts and new words. She seemed grateful.

She asked what I did for a living before we departed. I knew it may be a challenge for me to explain ‘auditor’ .  I focused more on finance, dollar signs, management and taxes but didn’t get there. What finally made her understand……….was when she translated it on her smart phone. She learned I was an ‘accountant’ and I now consider myself a constador.

We laughed again and took a selfie on her phone.

I offered to meet again on Saturday but she was considering going to NYC with some friends.  I was convinced they’d go to a coffee house and not get any sleep. I looked forward to hearing about her  NYC observations at our next meeting and wondered if there would be any humor in it.