The seasons of the orchestra of love


If you follow the tones of a violin, you will eventually meet the one that plays the instrument. Can you hear the music? The violin plays some sad tones with interludes of hope and sometimes quicker rhythms of a distant childhood. He sat in front of an abandoned warehouse and hoped that some passers-by would put coins into his violin case.

He had been sitting there every day for a whole year, after losing his job at the warehouse. One or two people would toss a coin into the violin case, but never more than that, as they were always on their way to the shops to buy food and clothes for their own use. Most people had very little to spare.

After a cold winter and a stormy spring, he decided to start walking. He had a vague dream about a town near the sea, he had never been there himself, but his uncle had lived there many years ago, and he used to tell him some stories about the place when he came for a visit. He looked around one more time before he left the town he had lived in his entire life. He did have a job for many years, but many people left the small town to work in the big factories in the big city, so many businesses and shops were left to wither. Many people were not able to find another job. He was only fifty-one years old, but his eyesight was poor and he had a limp. Although it is a deep truth that every human being is a treasure, there are those times when people are not seen as more than a cog in a machinery.

When the money ran out he lost his home and he sold all his furniture. He could survive for a few months, buying cheap bread and some butter, and he lived in a tent with holes in it, hidden between the abandoned warehouse and a cluster of trees. He never sold the violin, although he was offered some money for it. He was tempted for a while, but every time he played it he felt uplifted, it was another kind of energy than the food could give him, so he decided to keep the violin and start playing some tunes with it. His parents gave him that violin, brand new, for his twentieth birthday, back in the day when there were jobs for everyone. His father taught him to play a few songs, but then he put the violin in the back of his cupboard as he was always busy working at the warehouse. A fortune-teller once told him that his parents and his uncle all lived inside the violin, but that could not be! He laughed when she said it, but as the years went by, he wondered if this could be true, because he was always uplifted when he played a song, but whenever he visited the graveyard, he could feel nothing by sadness.

He walked for two weeks, until he finally came to the town by the sea. The smell of the ocean made him stop, he took a few deep breaths before he laid down by the road and fell asleep. He was very tired and he had not eaten properly for many days. Sometimes he found some berries, but that was all. He woke up late in the evening as he could hear someone playing a flute. He stumbled towards the centre of the town, carrying his bag and his violin case, and there, in front of an abandoned bakery, a man sat on the pavement, playing songs with a wooden flute.

The violinist sat down next to him and almost fainted, he had no energy left to spare, but the flutist offered him some milk. He thanked the flutist and drank it all up, he could not stop, he was so very, very thirsty. The milk tasted so good that he started crying. He apologized to the flutist and explained that he had not eaten for days. The flutist did not mind at all, because he knew how it felt to be hungry and thirsty. They talked for a while. They had so much in common! The flutist was a baker, but so many people had left the town to work in the factories, so the bakery could not survive. Half the people of the town by the sea had moved to the big city to work in the factories. The baker explained that there is a factory there that makes breads with no energy at all. And there are also factories that make fish cakes with little or no fish in them! How could that be? They laughed as they sat there on the pavement, oh it was so nice to talk to someone again. They both felt much better after sharing their life stories to each other.

There was some magic too. The flutist had also met the fortune-teller, as she used to travel from town to town with her predictions and tales. She had told the flutist that his entire family lived inside the flute! They both fell silent after that, wondering if this was actually true. The flutist inherited the flute from his grandfather, who was a great musician, playing many instruments in a circus and in taverns. He had been taught to play by his grandfather, and he remembered many songs, but he had also put the instrument at the back of his cupboard, because he was always busy working as a baker. They grew fond of each other, the violinist and the flutist. They had only been talking for a few hours, but they felt as if they were brothers. The flutist had been sleeping beneath a bridge, under some blankets, so the violinist suggested that they could share the tent and put all the blankets in there as well, so it would be comfortable and they had a better chance of surviving.

The orchestra of love was growing. Two is much more than one, and they played so well together! Quick, uplifting songs, that made some people dance in the street and applaud. Once or twice a day, someone would toss them a coin, but there were so few people there, and none of them had any money to spare, even though they applauded the music. The violin and the flute could be heard all around the main street of the town, and one day the fortune-teller showed up too, and she was not pleased!

She shouted at them; “You have to go to the big city! The drummer is waiting for you! The orchestra need a drummer! Go now! Go!” The two musicians were baffled, but in their hearts they did not doubt her anymore, they acknowledged that she knew what she was talking about. She even gave them some bread so they could survive the walk to the big city. They packed their bags and started walking, covered in blankets to keep the frost from their bodies. She had told them to follow the sound of the drummer and that he was usually sitting in one of the parks with fountains and pigeons.

They followed the coastline as they walked southward towards the big city. The tent kept them free of snow at night and the blankets kept them warm. They played songs together before they fell asleep, despite the fact that they had not been taught the same songs. The violinist learned to play the songs of the flutist, and the other way around, but they also developed the skill of creating new songs, right then and there. The they created songs together all the time, all sorts of songs, quick ones, humorous ones, slow, romantic ones and serious, rather gloomy ones too. All the moods of humanity were offered on the table of music, despite the cold winter and the hungry bellies.

When they arrived at the big city, they quickly understood why it was called the `big city`, as it was really big! Enormous! The buildings were tall and numerous, there were houses everywhere, right next to each other, in line, street after street, like grey soldiers, with smoke coming out of their chimneys. There was something grey and foggy about it all, and the automobiles were smelly and noisy. What a world! They walked around the city, from street to street, looking for a park with fountains, but there were many parks with fountains! And pigeons everywhere! Eventually they set up their tent between some bushes in one of the parks, they covered themselves with their blankets and slept for a while.

When they woke up, they shared the last piece of the bread and started playing songs. Sometimes they invented songs that they would play only once, in the moment, and other times they repeated a song, played it again and again to remember it. The next day, as they were playing inside the tent, a big, drunk man fell into the tent and started to sing loudly. He was very drunk and loud, so the two musicians stopped playing. It was difficult understand him, and he was so drunk that he fell asleep right next to the tent, in the snow. He would certainly freeze to death very quickly if they left him there, so they dragged him into the tent. They could barely fit him in there, but the hearts of humans always holds a place for compassion. As they dragged his bag inside the tent, a drumstick fell out of one of the pockets.

The seasonal orchestra of love was now completed, and in this particular season, it was an orchestra of three; a violinist, a flutist and a drummer. The drummer could also play the harmonica, so there was an overflow of instruments, full of the energy of their ancestors. The drummer woke up from his haze of booze and got to know the other musicians, they shared experiences and memories. The drummer had a lot in common with the two others, he had also left his small town to look for opportunities, and yes, he had encountered the fortune-teller as she had instructed him to follow the sound of the violin and the flute. They all agreed that if they ever came across her again, they would give her a hug and a penny or two.

They played together, effortlessly, playfully and brilliantly. Some of the songs they taught each other, others were invented in the moment, and never played again. They had to start preforming as soon as possible, because none of them had any coins or food. The drummer knew about a place between a church and a marketplace, it was a busy street with lots of people passing by from sunrise to sunset. They set up their orchestra and started playing, hoping that people would throw coins into the violin case.

If you can hear an orchestra playing, seemingly out of the blue, through the sounds of a violin, a flute, a drum and a harmonica, it is the seasonal orchestra of love that echoes, timelessly, through the hearts of humans. Some might dream about the songs, others can heart them faintly whilst they are busy with their lives, as the songs are always there for people to listen to. The radio of the heart is the ultimate transmitter. And how they played! People stopped to listen. The melancholic songs made them cry, the quick ones made them laugh and dance, and some of the songs were simply technically brilliant and dazzling! Natural musicians played by the energies of their ancestors, as they translated the energies through their instruments. All the moods and rhythms of the songs came from the lives of the musicians, as they translated their experiences into music, music that everyone can recognize.

By next summer, they had earned enough money to pay rent for a small apartment, they slept on the floor, shared every meal, laughed together and created music. They were hired to play in bars and restaurants, and at the end of the year, they all had their own apartments to live in.

Their season lasted for many years, almost twenty, and they all passed away with a feeling of fulfilment. If you want to chat with them, the all live inside any instrument, wherever it is, or; you can listen to the music of your heart.

The seasons of the orchestra of love never stops playing.

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