Monday, January 11, 2021

Ten Year Anniversary

10 years ago on this very day, I took the first step into the new territory of this public blog. I was at the upper edge of my 50’s and my constant need to say out loud what I was thinking was as great as ever. By that time, I had published 7 out of my 9 books, was still writing articles, still speaking at Orff workshops—and yet I wanted more! Alongside the writing was what I was writing about—my life of balancing teaching kids in a schooI and giving Orff workshops throughout the U.S., Canada and indeed, the world. I was about to set off for Korea, new Orff territory for me, and thought that this unusual life of traveling around teaching music teachers could be the theme of this Blog. And so the title, the “Confessions” part my vow to be honest and talk about everything that interested me, including my own failures and vulnerabilities. 


Around this time, my daughter was writing a blog about teaching in Argentina and introduced me to the format and the delivery system of Blogspot—perfect! Almost 3000 posts and 10 years later, with 222 followers and some 450,000 page views, here I still am. I am at once enormously grateful that this many people still seem interested in what I might say, filled with doubt as to whether this is worthy and at the same time, somewhat disappointed that the audience has not grown, that the little ripples I throw like a tiny pebble in a small pond won’t have the impact I think they deserve. But I always remind myself of a little quote from Gary Snyder’s Zen teacher: “Sweep the garden. Any size.”


And so I go on and if you’re reading these words, so are you going on with me and I thank you for that. To celebrate these ten years, I go back to my very first entry. Re-reading it, I can’t help but be struck by the memory of that life I lived that is closed to me now. No “standing in a circle with forty or fifty strangers singing a song” in a country arrived at by plane, no dancing together, drumming together, playing jazz together, going out to post-workshop meals together. All that life I lived with children and adults now suspended as we continue to shelter. 


But the vision runs true, the things I cared about then are still the things I care about now and perhaps even more so. The pleasure they gave me (and hopefully others) then, they still give me now, even reduced to squares on a screen. The “change I hoped to see in the world” feels at once closer and further away than ever before. All of it is here, the good, the bad and the ugly, the comedy and the tragedy, the light and the dark, the whole catastrophe and the extraordinary beauty, stored on these electronic pages. 




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