Friday, April 6, 2012

Suddenly, a bagpiper

My husband and I took a hike in a park today. So did hundreds of other people.

It's not uncommon to encounter people hiking on the woods trails, or bicycling, pushing strollers, and walking dogs on the flatter gravel trail. We saw all of that today. What was uncommon was the guy decked out in tam and kilt, standing on an outcropping of rock, playing the bagpipes.

Bagpipes evoke strong childhood memories in me, because I had a relative who was a bagpiper. So today, my husband and I sat on a bench with a good view of the piper and listened for a while.

It was one of those random, inexplicable things that just happen. Maybe it will end up in a story (the inevitable thought that writers have when encountering the unusual, the unexpected, the memorable). Maybe it won't. In real life, it was just a surprising, touching, enjoyable break, brought to me by a total stranger whose motives I don't know. In a story, it would have significance of some sort, and the character would be known to me, his mind and motives accessible.

In a story, everything has meaning. In life, too, everything has meaning, but we cannot know the full story of the world; we only know little pieces of the parts that directly concern us. The rest, we fill in, or walk away from never knowing the answers.


  1. I hear the bagpipes! Thanks, Jenn. You've reminded me of a moment my husband and I had in San Gimignano last year. Early morning walk. A woman and a harp. Delicious.

    1. Sometimes I hear drummers out in the woods, but a bagpiper is unusual, and I've never encountered a harp! Lucky you!

  2. I believe it was national tartan day yesterday, so the bagpiper doesn't surprise me. :) My hubby was tempted to throw on his kilt yesterday, lol. I swear my man can hear pipes from a about 80 miles away. His ears perk right up. Must be the Scot blood!