Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Ukulele Makes Its First Trip To The Vet

Last weekend my ukulele endured its first trip to the vet. I was worried how it would go. One might not think of ukuleles as being temperamental creatures, for they sound so affable and easygoing, but you never know.

On Sunday it was time. The rainbow-colored strings that came with the instrument were old and whiny even when they were in tune. It was time to make a trip to the Folk Music Center and get new strings, maybe pick up another songbook.

Gathering up the uke's carrying case, I spoke soothingly to the instrument so as not to arouse its suspicions. As I slid it into the carrying case, it could tell something was up. In the car, ukulele was intensely curious. Ukuleles travel well, in general, and this one is no exception.

The Folk Music Center is where I adopted this critter, and upon entering the store the uke seemed to recognize the place and feel happy. Soon we got the business and this was where I worried.

Fortunately, my ukulele is not highly strung.

Unzipping the carrying case, there was an initial hiss and a bit of a growl, but once we got to the business it cooperated. Laying there as we took off its strings it may have whimpered a bit, yet this was barely audible. He kept a brave face. The Center let me do the stringing myself, and I think this helped Ukie feel more at ease.

They asked me if I let the ukulele go outside. Generally, no, and never alone. That spared us a few of the shots. A general inspection suggested that Ukie is doing quite well indeed. A cheerful and sprightly instrument.

Our companionship is just over two months old. Next week, a nice fella by the name of Steve Rose over at McCabe's Guitar Shop in Santa Monica, will start working with us. We are already making beautiful music together but Steve is gonna help us take it to a new level, I know it.

Already I am wondering whether Ukie needs a friend. Besides me, of course. Another instrument, a playmate for when I'm not around to play with him. Right now, I can't handle another one, but maybe in the future. We'll see how things go with Ukie.

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