No, it’s not my time yet. But having just gone to a high school concert featuring 7 of our alum students from the SF School, I’m already making plans for my Retirement Party, whenever that might be. It’s simple: a concert where I get to play music with all the alums who have gone on to seriously study and perform. Of course, as I go through the list in my mind, it seems like it might be a 4-hour affair. I’ve always thought that the percentage of kids from our school who went on to play music is not higher than any other school, but lately I think I’m wrong. And I need to apologize to all the parents who will have no financial security from their musician kids as they approach old age. Sorry!
But dang, I love the way these kids play and neither myself nor James and Sofia can take all the credit for it. But yes, some for sure as we gave them the solid foundation of musicality at the right age in the right way for the right amount of time—11 years for some! And I can testify as a musician still suffering from my own shaky childhood foundation that it you get it right the first time, build that solid base as it was meant to be, the only question remaining is the time and dedication to keep soaring.
And back to my retirement. In Europe, it’s mostly mandatory. In pregnancy, you have nine months. In graduate school, you have 2, 3 or 4 years. But here the freedom to choose carries the maddening question of when? When is the right time? I keep waiting for some sign from the gods or an amazing better job offer or my own sense that I have nothing left to do with these kids. And why can’t I have the party so I can play with these kids without actually retiring? Can I have “Will probably retire sometime in the next 10 years Retirement Party?”
Well, no more time to think about it. I have to plan tomorrow’s classes.