As anyone who is a friend of mine on Facebook knows, I’ve spent the last few weeks eagerly awaiting the arrival of my harp from Canada (you could say I’ve been harping on a bit). Two weeks ago, it was sent from a town in British Columbia to Richmond to Vancouver, where it got stuck because of an issue with the postal address. After a few days, it started moving again, landing in Memphis. From there, it went to Honolulu of all places and from there it finally went to Sydney. Yes, I thought, it’s finally on Australian soil. But then it got stuck again, while bureaucracy decided its future – to tax or not to tax, that is the question. Fortunately they decided not to tax and it was sent on its merry way across the Nullarbor to Perth and then to here.
There were two harps in the box. The harpist (harper?) who gave me the information about the harp in the first place, decided to get himself one at the same time, so they were both sent to him. He kindly tuned it for me and delivered it to me at work, albeit the wrong campus (our school has a primary and secondary campus). When my boss heard that it was at the other campus and that I wouldn’t be there until my lunchtime library duty, he got in his car and went to get it for me. Of course, he had an ulterior motive – he wanted to see it as much as I did!
As you can see ‘she’ is beautiful. She created quite a stir at school. Who could resist running their fingers over those strings? And she sounds as beautiful as she looks. I’ve done so much practice over the past few days that my shoulder aches and my fingers are complaining. I get so engrossed in trying to play (trying being the operative word) that I forget to take a break. It’s such fun though, picking out tunes and trying to get the right sound. I made up a tune today, just so that I could play something without anyone knowing if I was playing it wrong. My right hand, used to the guitar, loves it. My left hand is stiff, as if it’s saying, “you want me to do what?” But it will get the idea eventually.
Sentimental as I am, I’ve named her ‘Siomha’, an Irish name meaning ‘Peace’. I’m still waiting for an Irish friend to tell me exactly how to pronounce it.