The couple in the flat upstairs have bought a piano. They bought it a few weeks before Christmas, it’s been put in the room directly above mine so I can hear it clearly when it’s being played. I’m not entirely sure whether they both play it or just one of them, I think it’s just one of them – if it’s them both then they’re very evenly matched in ability. They’re very considerate about when they play it. I must admit that when I first heard it I worried a little about how late they’d be playing it but they always stop before I’m settling down for the night (and I’m in bed not much after 10 most nights).
Whoever it is they’re making steady progress, there’s a clear improvement in their skill level. That very first stage of a new piece when they’re working it out bar by bar soon moves to tentative plays through the entire piece before they master it and practice it to perfect it. When they first started each stage took so much more time than it does now. The pieces are getting trickier too, and I’m recognising more and more of them.
Hearing them has brought back plenty of happy memories for me. Music is so entwined with my memories, from all the music I’ve listened to and loved to all of the musical activities I’ve been involved in over the years. Hearing music from a neighbour though reminds me most of Dan, who lived opposite me in my Halls of Residence and played the guitar. He was such a skilled guitarist, as well as playing pretty much anything you could think of by ear he would sit improvising the prettiest, most beautiful music. There were many nights where I would fall asleep not to the sound of whatever soothing album I was listening to at bedtime but instead to his playing.
I have no idea where he is now, or what he’s doing. I hope he’s still playing though.