Wednesday, March 23, 2011

An unusual treat!!!!!

We got new neighbors today and Terry helped the guy get his television cable working. He had a broken end on it and Terry changed it out for him. It still didn't work and so a little digging around found another problem that Terry fixed. So now they have television. It's always nice to lend a hand to fellow campers who need some help.

Tonight was a beautiful evening and we were sitting out under the awning reading. Across from us is an Indian man (from the country India) and we have exchanged greetings over the course of the past several weeks. He works nights, so we never have much time to chat. I have on occasion seen him carrying a sitar to his car, and I have been curious about that. Tonight he came over and introduced himself to us. He was trained as a nuclear scientist in his native India and worked for his government traveling all over the world. He speaks 18 1/2 languages. He came to the U.S. in pursuit of the American Dream but found that he could not be employed in his field because the U.S. would not accept his degree from his homeland. So he got a job with the University of Texas Police Department and he has been there for 26 years. He is actually on the job at the Proton Therapy Center where Terry goes for treatments, but he is on the nightshift.

I finally asked him about his sitar. He has been playing for 52 years. AND, he said, "I will play for you." He went and got his "stage," which was his carpet, and then brought his sitar. It is a rather large instrument made from a special type of gourd grown in India. His is elaborately carved and has frets like a guitar, but the ones on the sitar are very different. There are 23 strings on the sitar, but he said you really only play 3 at the most and primarily one. The other strings are used for resonance. He strummed it with his right hand like a guitar with a special pick that was a wire which he wore on the end of his finger. The left hand would work the wire and in one song he played, it appeared that he made chords. Other times, he worked that one wire. He played scales for us and it appeared that all 23 strings would do scales. He is a remarkable musician and he said he is the only sitar player in Texas. He gives lessons on the weekend here in Houston. I was mesmerized by his talent and the sing-song of the sitar. I like most any instrument and especially strings. But I admire talent more and he was very good. I am excited that we had a chance to hear him play and admire the music of a foreign land.

Till next time. . .

Dale

Here is a little music clip. It is actually a movie, but it was dark out and I don't have a movie camera. But the important part is the music.
video

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