In the early 1920s, my great-grandparents purchased a 3/4 violin and some lessons from an itinerant musician type. My grandfather was the beneficiary of the violin and those lessons for the few months the musician was in the area. Many years later, he received another violin. He loved to play even though he wasn’t very accomplished. In spite of knowing that he really wasn’t very good, he played in church occasionally and the folks in his little church loved it, mostly because they loved him.
As we traveled to g’ma’s house (my mom), we were accompanied by Barbies, Kens, Staceys, et al. and a Barbie plane along with other Barbie branded items to be kept for my neice. As we traveled home from g’ma’s house, we were accompanied by the violin purchased in the 1920s. Mimi (my grandmother) is thrilled that The Entertainer is starting violin (in orchestra and the fiddle club) in the fall. We were definitely on the better end of the deal for this trade.
However, it was obvious, even to those who know almost nothing about violins, that the violin purchased in the 1920s needed some rehabilitation. The Entertainer and I went to a specialty store recommended by several folks to see what the cost of rehabilitation would be. We also needed to determine if the 1920s violin was the right size. The good news is that rehabilitation costs less than a yearly rental. The bad news is that the Entertainer needs a half size.
The surprise for the Entertainer, when she returns from her dad’s tomorrow, is the rented half size violin waiting for her with the required book and a shoulder rest that will expand to fit a 3/4 size. The recommended store gave us the expandable shoulder rest because it is used and they had no new ones in stock. We’ll be recommending the store to others, too.
The rehabilitated violin purchased in the 1920s will be picked up later in the month. We’ll get a new case and bow then, and, hopefully, they’ll have the pink music stands in stock so we can get one of those, too.
[An aside: The Entertainer was born on the anniversary of my grandfather’s death, 7 years later.]