Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. - Romans 14:19
To my friend, Gwen, on her birthday.
Listening: Bjork and Anthony in "Dull Flame of Desire"
Some people you know you are going to like from the second you meet them. Gwen is one of these people for me. I still remember the day I met her...on the leather couches,"Hiyeh! I'm Abigail. Do you play bassoon?" I loudly included myself into her first day at the next major step in her life..."I noticed the case!"
It all sounds so lame now, to remember...
Gwen and I became fast friends, mostly out of necessity (mostly HER necessity), you see...I had a car at school and she had taken the greyhound from Canada and did not. One of the first days of school, I remember taking her Canadian self to FIESTA!
I talked the entire way there, the entire time we shopped, and the entire way back. I think she still had her 500lb bassoon case with her and she looked a little in shock from me and Texas and the school, but nevertheless, she was very nice. I think I said things like, "You'll be fine." "It is really difficult at first, I remember my first week." "We will all HAVE to be friends, you see." "I think it is gonna be a great studio." "Well, Andrew knows Fei, so I think they are living together." "Where are you staying?" "Who's your roomate? some flute player?? Oh, so you like Bjork? Me too."
One thing I have learned about Gwen is that she doesn't like gossip and she is a fairly private person. She was kind to let me ask her all of these questions, she still lets me ask questions.
I know I tired her out. I still do sometimes, but at this moment, she tolerated me - I think she could tell I was at least trying to help...even if it was coming across as a little arrogant.
I want to share my favorite scripture in all of the Bible today. This passage truly reminds me of my friend, Gwen, and her understated willingness to incorporate all different types of people into her concept of life. And because she lives in a different country, I will send this message over the internets instead of sending a box full of muffins that are moldy when they finally arrive at her door (note: this tragedy has already occurred and I learned my lesson).
I am going to paraphrase a little:
Everybody has different gifts and ways of doing things, but all of these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and they are specially given to each one as God decides.
The body (of Christ's church in this case) is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body...
If the foot says to the hand, "Because I'm not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of that body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body.
If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be?
As it is, there are many parts, but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don't need you!" On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor...
God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.
If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
Gwen is definitely the hand to my eye. We are quite different people. But, I just wanted to share a couple of remembrances on her birthday:
-An incredible voice on the bassoon. Gwen plays with incredible passion and sincerity. Every note has significance. She plays like she lives, noticing everything and appreciating what there is to appreciate.
-Being yelled at while getting ice cream at Amy's by a belligerent guy wearing a pretentious hat.
-Teaching Gwen to drive at my parent's house over the holidays.
-Having her stop the car and get out and say that she had done enough driving.
-Always bringing up meat as a topic of conversation almost every time we speak even though she is of the vegetarian persuasion.
-Sending moldy blueberry muffins across the continent along with a bouquet of 4th of July paraphernalia so that Gwen could have a proper celebration.
...Gwen not telling me they were moldy until I persisted on how she liked their taste. ;)
-A beautiful hand drawn, hand folded note after my recital that said such uplifting, lovely things that it clearly reflected more on the sender than on the recipient.
-Homeschool Band Concert in Pensacola, Fl. Mignone Duet.
-Bad, Bad cane and Bad, Bad days with reeds in 2007-2008
-Another edifying note given at just the right time.
-Canada! and Addictively good Chocolate Gelato that she wouldn't eat.
-Loads of talk about squirrels and other woodland creatures.
-Coffee in the student center...or rather me walking to the student center in search of her knowing that she would be there getting coffee to ramp up for another late night at the studio.
-No cell phone. :(
-Bjork (particularly the Bjork song that is at the top of the page)
-skyping with LOUD kitty accompaniment. and last, but not least...
-being far away from my friend