When I was born, the doctor exclaimed that I would make a great pianist. This was due to my long, slender fingers. My parents recounted that story to me often.
My mother wanted us children to learn to play the piano. So much so, she made the offering of swapping skills: her maths tutelage to some kids, in exchange for their mother to teach me piano. I remember Mum suggesting this to me. Somewhere deep inside, I wanted to learn, but I fobbed it off. At that young age I thought it would be an inconvenience I didn’t want to put Mum through. It’s strange to think that I rejected an offer that she made willingly (and probably would have loved doing).
I may have refused to learn the piano, but I was not allowed to refuse to learn to touch-type. I couldn’t understand at the time, but Mum said that computers were going to be very important in the future and that it would be relevant for me to learn the skill. So my parents paid for me to go to TAFE and learn the qwerty way. There would be no slow pecking of the keys when trying to type up my assignments in the future. The ten week afternoon course brought out my competitive side, as I raced other children in the number of words per minute.
Today I’m grateful that Mum forced me to learn to touch-type. It has made typing for work particularly, an ease. I know I could start learning the piano now. But something stops me. I’m not entirely sure what. So when I type at my computer for little stories such as these, it transports my fingers to a place of believing instead that I am playing a piece of music on the piano.