I begged Ray to watch Sophie on Friday night.
“Oh come on,” he said. “She’ll LOVE the piano concert. You can watch both of them, no problem.”
Annoyingly, Ray is almost always right, so why was I surprised when, in fact, Sophie did love the piano concert? The both part — that’s where he was wrong.
We were out with Mrs. M., O. and L., friends from school who have come — in a little more than two years — to be a big part of our lives. (Stop crying, Mrs. M.! Mrs. M. has been a bad influence on my own tear ducts.)
Anyhow, L. and Annabelle, who are the same age and have been in the same class since they had the fabulous Ms. X. for kindergarten, are both taking piano lessons. Well, sort of.
I can’t honestly recall the last time Annabelle practiced. Part of that is due to the fact that, um, we don’t actually own a piano. We do have a keyboard, so it’s technically possible, but if you’ve seen our playroom lately you know the avalanche that must be risked to retrieve the keyboard or any other item in the room. I am told that we’ll be inheriting my grandparents’ piano — a lovely whitewashed upright number carefully chosen by some Scottsdale interior decorator in the 70s. I can’t imagine where we’ll put it.
Annabelle and L. did seem excited about going to see their teacher perform; so did O., L.’s older sister. I wasn’t so sure about Sophie; she’s not the best at sitting still.
The evening started out well, with margaritas (for the adults) and the macarena (for the kids) at one of our favorite Mexican restaurants. The girls got the wiggles out (or so we thought) by shimmying to the stylings of a particularly raucous group of mariachis. Oblivious to what was ahead, Mrs. M. and I drove a few blocks to a gorgeous little cathedral in downtown Phoenix and took our seats in the front row, ready for the concert.
Really, the setting was amazing, so un-Phoenix (my poor hometown takes a beating, and no more so than from me — or is it from I?) and the trio that played, including the piano teacher, was stunning. Sophie curled up in Mrs. M.’s lap; O. sat perfectly still, enchanted. Even I relaxed after a long week and enjoyed it.
For about 30 seconds.
Annabelle and L. were a mess from the first note. “Can we go outside?” L. whispered loudly — oh, I don’t know, maybe 100 times in the first 10 minutes. Annabelle giggled, fidgeted, and tried to dance in the aisles. There were requests regarding pedicures and questions about prayer books.
Toward the end of the first half, Sophie did pop off Mrs. M.’s lap and insist on saying hello to the performers. I had to keep a death grip on her.
No one was surprised that we didn’t stay past intermission.
Afterward, Annabelle didn’t say a word about the concert. She and L. moved on immediately — mainly to the rich contents of the backseat of my car (which included an Elmo costume, remote control puppy and several books) and the topic of what sort of ice cream they’d get for dessert.
Sophie’s mentioned the piano — and imitated the flute playing — several times since. Maybe she’ll be my musician. She DOES do a mean macarena.