Monday, April 05, 2010

It's a Small World After All

This weekend while I was visiting St. Athanasius' annual Pascha pic nic, I had fun playing a friend's guitar, while she played mandolin and alternately banjo, and another guy who, I assumed, was a friend of her's played banjo as well.

Well, they played, and I just followed along doing the chords-n-rhythm thing. Folk music. I had a blast.

It's been a while since I have regularly played my guitar and my finger tips are out of shape.(Note to self: Must remedy that situation.) I really wish I had a group of people to mess around with, musically, so that I can expand my knowledge and have such fun more often. Yes, I can pick up chords by ear, but all in all, I consider my musical abilities to be rather limited. Lackluster and untrained singing voice who hides in the back of choir and sings know the type. But I do SO enjoy it. I think me and music are a bit of a joke on God's part.

Well, today after liturgy I was introduced to this young man, and he asked me how long I'd been playing. I hemmed and hawed, unwilling to admit that I've not really improved much in the past 29 years or so, having reached my musical apex at the age of eleven after taking a year of guitar lessons to learn basic chords. A semester of jazz guitar in Seminary was utterly wasted on my limited sense of white girl rhythm.

Ben is his name, he seemed polite, and very young. Which is really to say that when I'm introduced to twenty-somethings, I feel old and uncool. Because I am.

Later, I was chatting with some other folks about a pipe dream of mine: Having a house for Orthodox adults on the autism spectrum or who might have other disabilities/health issues. This would be for (women, since I'm dreaming it up here...but who's just the germ of a dream. Could be couples, families, singles???) people who want to live a quiet, prayerful, communal life with somewhat of a prayer cycle, as part of a local parish, but who live and garden and share meals communally with each other. Enough private space to balance out the fellowship aspects.

So we are discussing these ideas, and also the limitations of monasticism, as regards people with disabilities.

Then it comes out in conversation that we (my husband and I and our kids) are not a members of St. Athanasius. He did not know that. "No, we moved to Louisville, we go to St. Michael's" "Oh, I'm good friends with the Craigs!" says this Ben person.

"Ah, you are BEN!" I say. "THE BEN who rode your bike to Alaska! I've heard STORIES about you."

It's a small world, a small, small Orthodox world here in this country.


elizabeth said...

But did you just say you are old and uncool. I so beg to differ! :)

My love and greetings to you on this Bright Monday!

ps: love that you are dreaming of good things that you mentioned!

Veiled Glory said...

Teensy tiny world. I am sure the few peeps in my parish know the Craigs too or know someone who knows them. Soon people will know who WE are and that is a little scary. ;-) Esp. if they've seen my mug online....

Mimi said...

Christ is Risen!
I love the idea.
And, I am continually amazed at how small the Orthodox world is.

Marta said...

You met Ben! Yay!

Neuropoet said...

Just for the record, I love the idea of a communal type living situation for spectrum people/families... My boys would really enjoy a communal prayer life etc... even now at 12 and 9 year old. Too bad Oregon is pretty far away from where you are!

+Jenny (soon to be Nonna - our family is will be baptized into the Church tomorrow!) :)