This will not be my customary blog, as if I can be said to have established a pattern after only five entries. I am looking for someone. And if something as random my “Miracle in Paris” story can happen, then just maybe the readers of this blog can help me.
In Europe, if one is dining alone in a restaurant, the waiter is free to seat a total stranger or strangers at one’s table. In July of 2017 two women were seated with me at an outdoor restaurant in Wittenberg, and now I am looking for them for the simple reason that one was such a vivacious and obviously intelligent person. (None of us had business cards on us to exchange.) One was an American and the other was a German, and they told me they were a married couple. They are in their 40s and live on a lake south of Munich.
The American was the lively one and her name was something like “Annette.” She grew up near Cleveland, and went to hear the Cleveland Orchestra often as a child. Her parents, however, live today in Richmond, Virginia, and they visit her, but separately. The mother only wants to attend concerts and the father only wants to visit WW II sights. So they visit their daughter one at a time. Also, Annette, perhaps with her partner, owns a marketing firm in Munich. In addition, she told me that she has a friend who is looking for a pianist to play in a piano trio, i.e. piano, violin, and cello. Yes, time has passed so they may no longer need a pianist, but still making the connection might be fun and useful.
I have been asked if I would like to move Germany. The answer is “Yes,” but there is a problem: The government is involved in church music appointments, and it is not about to give an American a church job, even in a village. The little church in which I have played for three summers has no musician at all. But the government still will not appoint me. (The congregation would appoint me in a heartbeat.)
By the way, that church is not pretty, and the organ is old and nothing special. I play there because the pastor is a true man of God. A spirit of sincerity emanates from his countenance as he preaches, even when I don’t understand half of what he is saying. The congregation loves him and knows it is blessed to have him. (The Holy Cross Choir and friends will meet him on our choir tour in June of 2019.) I asked him this past summer how much longer he planned to stay at the little church and he told me 5 or 6 more years. (He has been there about 5 so far.) In other words, he is not driven by ambition, but by doing God’s work.
I do not think that ambition is behind my desire to move to Germany. I hope something as simple as a bent for a new experience is my motivation in that regard. It just seems to me that the more people I meet over there, the greater number of potentially helpful connections I will have. Annette had to have started somewhere, and ended up with a partner and a business. I would settle for a woman of interest to visit in Germany and a playing gig in the summer.
So, if any of you know of someone in Richmond, Munich or anywhere else, who might know the ladies I met at the restaurant in Wittenberg, please let me know. As Miss Perry used to say, “The Lord moves in mysterious ways His wonders to perform.”