Saturday, September 5, 2015

Why A Ukulele

As time goes on, I find it more and more difficult to do a lot of things that used to be a lot easier. So, in accommodation, I've had to change my lifestyle. I can no longer walk the woodland streams to stalk the wily trout. Or even walk the lake shores in search of the less wily bass. Policing my brass at the target range has become too difficult to continue.

Of course, I have my reading and my blog. Both are satisfying. But the constant reading of the news and scourging those whose behavior I find counter productive (and they are legion) was dragging me down. Since I really hate it when I leave manic and enter the territory of depressive, I felt that I needed something more.

What should I do? What should I do? I thought long and loud. I contemplated my sins. Both past and future. I prayed for guidance. Finally, my prayers were answered. I needed music in my life. 

Well OK. How? In what form? Back to contemplation! Personal problems of this importance are not easily solved. A pipe organ or concert grand piano were out. Way too big. A sitar is way too complicated. I needed small and simple. In my little man cave, even an acoustic guitar would be crowded.

Banjos and mandolins are expensive. Besides, my wife said that if I got a banjo, she'd leave. At my age, that is untenable. So, again, I thought and I thought. Then I remembered. Back when I was a kid, there was this guy on TV. His name was Arthur Godfrey. He played the ukulele and extolled their virtues.

Perfect solution. I heard that ukuleles are inexpensive and easy to learn. Why not? So I took the plunge.  I went to my  buy anything source, Amazon. Now bear in mind, this was less than nine months ago. I searched "ukulele".  And didn't I get a bunch. 

I settled on a $50.00 instrument to get started. Two days later (I'm a Prime customer) it was in my hands. I did an internet search for information on learning to play. I was soon up and running. I could actually play something resembling music.

I soon realized that a little soprano uke was insufficient to my big arthritic fingers. So I bought a tenor uke. Great! I found some songs on line and made real progress. But I was just strumming. I really wanted to learn finger picking. A little tough with hands like mine, but I found an on-line course. I'm even making a little progress with this.

I now own three ukes. I'm playing every day. I'm having fun. I realized early on that I would never be asked to tour with Aerosmith. But I take great pleasure in the learning process. My gains are in little steps, but they still make me smile. It doesn't matter how far I get. It is the journey that is important, not the destination.