Let’s start this off with honesty. Total honesty.
I play ukulele with great enthusiasm—but not a whole bunch of skill. But I rarely stop smiling when I play. So perhaps that explains what I’m going to relate here.
I played ukulele—to an appreciative audience. Of strangers, even (I mean, really, family doesn’t count when they appreciate you playing, do they? The whole blood/family ties thing pretty much means they have to give you kudos. Unless it’s 10:20 pm and you’re still playing “You Are My Sunshine.” Again. But I digress…).
Here’s the story: Mark and I were heading home from a couple of weeks in Hawai’i. I’m never the happiest heading home because, well, we’re heading home. But the outdoor gardens at Honolulu Airport make the transition a little smoother. Since we had plenty of time between our flight from Hawai’i Island to our connection from Honolulu, I scouted out a shady bench in one of the gardens near the inter-island terminal and opened my ukulele case.
No one was nearby (well, except Mark, but we’ve already been down that conversational path) so I didn’t worry about upsetting any passengers who were looking for a quiet, non-ukulele-music interlude. I plucked and strummed and even sang some favorite Hawaiian tunes. Then I realized I had an audience.
It turned out my shady bench was near a lower entrance for Hawaiian Airlines staff and a group of new employees-in-training who were on a break had stepped up behind me to watch and listen. Geesh, was I embarrassed. But they smiled and all clapped heartily. Gee, do you think Hawaiian Airlines hires employees who are tone deaf for a reason?
To keep the honesty thing going: I didn’t really get all that money from playing at the airport. Those are bills from Mark’s wallet in my open ukulele case. Just in case you didn’t know 😉 And the other picture? Well, the birds really did come and sit on my feet as I played. And I did not bribe them with any food. Really!