You will recall that, some months ago, the peace and tranquility of my office was disturbed by a loud twanging sound. The bridge of my old nylon string classical guitar had snapped in the middle and had sprayed pieces of broken plastic all over the the place.
Now things are pretty tight at our place financially so the instrument has sat in the corner ever since till I could save up some corn to have it repaired (I mean, it isn’t as if I don’t have OTHER guitars to play in the mean time).
So last week I took it down to my local guitar shop, complete with a new bridge that I had purchased on the intersweb and asked the boys to fix it for me. I specified that they should ring me with a quote before they started working so I would know how much money I’d have to find. The boss called back the next day and said it was going to cost me $150. Now I know peoples’ time is valuable but I was a bit disappointed. But they already had it there and I DID want to get it fixed so I reluctantly agreed and told them to go ahead with the repair. He said it would take a week or so because they would have to glue on the new bridge and then clamp it for a few days to make sure that it was properly stuck.
So I was a bit surprised when he called back the next day and asked me what was the meaning of the plaque on the back of the guitar. Most of you know that the instrument was a rescue job from when I was doing some work at a local school and that the DP there had told me I could have it if I wanted it. I am guessing that was around 2008. I took it home fixed it up and it became my school guitar until I stopped teaching. Sadly, Mick Clancy, who had given it to me, and his wife, Carol, died in a terrorist attack some years ago when the airliner in which they were travelling was shot down over Russia. In Mick’s memory, I got a little brass plaque made commemorating him.
When I explained this to Aaron he said that he thought it must have been the same Mick Clancy who had taught him when he was in 4th Grade at Albion Park School. I assured him that it was. Aaron went on to say that he always liked Mick and that he was a great teacher and that he thought I had done a nice thing.
Yesterday I received an SMS from him saying that guitar was fixed so, while I was out and about doing other things, I dropped by the shop and collected it. Aaron wasn’t there but, when one of the guys went to ring up the sale, he noted that there was a remark in the “Comments” section to indicate that Aaron was pleased to fix the guitar in Mick’s memory and that there would be no charge for the work. I was stunned as was the guy serving me and I asked him to pass on my thanks. I was more than prepared to pay the full price but found it being proved to me yet again that there are still some incredibly good people out there.
It’s so nice to have it back, I feel like something that has been missing has been returned to me and playing it brings back some great memories of a valued work colleague and friend.