Thursday, January 15, 2009

This made my night.

I was talking to a good friend of mine that I keep on liking more and more with each and every encounter - Tony La. The both of us were just standing on the stairs in front of the Humanities Hall of UCI, wasting time and talking. Somewhere within our conversation I absentmindedly pulled out Monica, my harmonica, out and blew a couple notes in it.

The both of us heard a man approach, saying something that was not quite audible to our ears because we thought he was directing his speech towards someone else. I thought he was talking on his cellphone with a blue-tooth headset - but at a glance I saw he was not. There was nobody else around him, so I immediately tuned in to what he was saying after I came to the realization that he was talking to us.

He pulls a harmonica out - and old Hohner pocket harmonica in the key of C. I asks if I can play a couple notes in it and my gosh what a tone. After I gave it back to him, without a beat, he just starts playing riffs. Compelled, I played along - playing long notes underneath the rapid fire bullets he bursts into the holes of that mouth harp. I didn't want to try anything fancy, I just wanted to hear him. My accompaniment - least from what I can hear - blended well with his fanciful notes of eighths and sixteenths - I wanted to just listen, but at the same time I wanted to be a part of the music so I just kept on playing. The small audience watching us from the bridge up above were highly entertained, but not as much as I was, oh no.

I almost forgot how great it feels to make beautiful music...

It only lasted for a moment, this ad hoc jam session, but my God it was awesome. Finally, I was able to improve with somebody something that actually sounded like good music. And I was actually (kinda) able to keep up!

We exchanged names: he introduced himself as Richard Nester, the writing instructor over at UCI's LARC (Learning and Academic Resource Center) program. I introduced myself as Henry, a first year at UCI that he's bound to see around more often. I was compelled to give him my card, but decided against it - I found it wiser not to.

After that brief - but amazing - encounter, Tony and I were absolutely flabbergasted. It was badass - to say the least. Next time I see him - and hopefully I recognize his face - I hope we can have a repeat of our experience.

My God, I expected today to be pretty shitty with my busy schedule, but that moment absolutely made my night.

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