A piercing screech shattered the silence of the quiet afternoon, setting my teeth on edge, like fingernails on a chalkboard. My shoulders tensed, anticipating the next shriek. It came, even more curdling than the first. The blood drained from my face, puddling in my toes, anchoring me to the floor. I wanted to run screaming from the room, but, somehow, I was mesmerized by the horror of that sound. I had never heard anything so frightening in my life.
The howling persisted, becoming rhythmic now, repeating over and over and over, picking up speed, the beat angry and demanding:
Da da dum dum, da da dum dum
Da da dum dum dum dum dum dum
It was racing to a fever pitch, tortured into a frenzy. My face contorted in agony, my mouth forming a silent circle as in Edvard Munch‘s The Scream. Then a voice started shouting, pleading, begging, “Stop! Stop! Make it stop!” With horror I realized the voice was my own. No, this was no dream. No nightmare, except one of my own making. When the pain became unbearable, I put down my violin.
After six years of neglect, my violin finally has its new Diamond e-string and I can begin playing again, thanks to my husband who took me to the violin shop Tuesday to have some repairs made and get my new string. He’s been wanting me to go back to playing for a long time because he knows how much I enjoy it. In fact, he is such a sweet honey, he prefers me to practice when he’s at work so I won’t be distracted. Isn’t that thoughtful of him?
If ya’ll are getting together to start a band, I’ll come sing with you, get that show out of the shower once and for all! Oct. 31 would probably be a good date to start with that, um, noise. 😉
You would be a great addition, Patti. You’d outshine us all!
Ha! Ha! You totally fooled me! I remember the day I tried to play the cello again after, oh, ten years or so of neglect…so yeah, I get this horror. Have fun practicing!
Yea, Emily! Someone who truly gets how horrible those first notes are. My fingers still haven’t toughened up, so the pads of the fingers are sore and I’m not getting good pressure on the strings. Plus, my frog is cracked, so I can’t get good tension in my bow. Think I need to have it fixed. I’m sure that’s why I still sound horrible. Yea, that’s it. Must be it. Certainly couldn’t be my complete lack of talent! LOL
I love coming here to visit and read. Since I am not particularly good at commenting, I want you to know that. 🙂
I took violin lessons when I was in the 4th and 5th grades. My mother decided I needed to take piano lessons instead.
I am reading between the lines, Robin, with your mother’s desire to have you switch to the piano. Thank you so much for telling me you like visiting my site. It does take a lot of time to write comments for every blog you read, so I’d rather you read and didn’t feel the need to comment. I get, on average, about 100 hits a day but only about 12 comments for each post (it shows more, but half of them are my responses), so I know many people read without commenting, and that’s fine with me. I just like that some people do read what I’ve taken the time to write. You should do a post on that!
Your opener fooled me – I was expecting some horror story! You know, Halloween, trick-or-treat sort of thing, which is on the full-time mama’s mind these days.
I am sure you are being super modest about your playing.
Actually, S of S, I don’t think I’ve quite described how horrible my playing truly is! I should have waited to post this on Halloween.
Came to your site via Big Happy Nothing and what a great day to pick to stop by. Very funny ending indeed.
What a nice comment, EOSR. Now I’m going to visit you.
I love this–> “In fact, he is such a sweet honey, he prefers me to practice when he’s at work so I won’t be distracted. Isn’t that thoughtful of him?” lol
You are a treasure. Your talents and delightful sense of humor never fail to brighten my day.
Thanks for that beautiful comment, E.C. Great to hear I’m a treasure so early in the morning!
You are so funny!! I miss you. : (
I miss you, too, my darling. Just a few more weeks…
What a loving caring man you have for a husband. Cherish him Susan and keep playing that violin. I had to give it up when at school. The dog couldn’t stand the noise of my practising. 😀
Very unfair of your dog, Judith! And, yes, I cherish my sweet husband every day…and I make sure I put that violin away before he walks in the door!
Forgot to ask… have you decided whether or not to do NaNoWriMo?
Yes, Shary, I did sign up for NaNoWriMo, but I don’t think I can do it because I’ll be gone for an entire week in November.
Me, too. But I’m going to give it a whirl anyway. Even if I don’t make it, I’ll still get LOTS done. I love how racing myself to the finish line turns off my inner critic.
Okay, Shary, maybe I’ll give it a go, too. Even if I get one solid week or two of pushing myself, it will mean I’ll have a good start on my writing.
I signed up for NaNoWriMo this year, my first attempt. November is a tough month, so much going on…
It is a tough month, Patti. I’m just going to do the best I can and see what happens. I have so many volunteer projects I’m also responsible for and am behind on, and it’s making me crazy because all I want to do is work on that novel.
Love your Halloween post! I’m not fooled by your ending, though. I’m sure you play beautifully.
Thanks, Shary. Let’s just say I play good enough for me to enjoy…without anyone else in the house (or in a five-block radius, for that matter!)
You are very funny and I think you are way too modest. That e-string will be feeling right at home soon, I’m sure.
Um, Georgette…you haven’t heard me play. 😉
That is very pretty! And I bet it will be sounding beautiful very soon.
Thanks for the encouragement, Winsomebella. My old violin is just plain pretty to look at, regardless of the sounds that come out of it.
You reeled us in with this one! Hook, line and sinker….no wait, screech, string and bow. Good one, CE. If I sat down at my long-ignored piano, we could make beautiful…er…some music together. LOL
And we wouldn’t even have to be in tune, Mama! LOL
Heehee! That was an excellent beginning! I’m so hooked on horror stuff right now (completely obsessed with “American Horror Story” on FX Network) I was game for your opener. But please, please keep playing. You’ll knock the rust off and uncover something beautiful again. Good for the soul.
Thanks, SC. I was just telling my husband I’m amazed that I can sound so awful and still love playing. I only play for me anyway, so what does it matter?
I was convinced it was Charlotte!
Very funny, neighbor! Now you’ll probably stop sending Charlotte over, huh? I promise I will hide my violin whenever she comes over!
Sounded like a Halloween story at first. Oh wait, I guess it was supposed to be 😉
I should have saved it for Monday, huh, HG? Poor planning!
You are indeed a master story teller!!! But didn’t you say in an earlier post that you no longer had the calluses, necessary for playing the violin, on your fingers? I’m sure that’s your problem. 🙂
Actually, LDC, now I’m thinking I might need a new bow because my frog is broken. Yes, that’s got to be it. Oh, and the calluses, too!
I’m so impressed you can play! Would love to hear it sometime. Maybe a vlog post!
What’s the matter with you, Leah. Didn’t you READ my post? LOL!
Hmm, good fiddle music is beautiful, bad is … yes, you described it perfectly! Enjoy! 😉
What are you saying about my playing, Idiosyncraticeye? LOL!
That is so funny!!!! You really built me up for the ultimate horrible ending!
And it was indeed horrible, Dor!