National Ukulele Day
Thursday February 02nd 2023, 9:48 pm
Filed under: Friends,Life

Someone far away from her was flipping idly through TV channels. And happened to catch that the local news was, in honor of National Ukulele Day, re-airing a video from ten years ago–and she immediately grabbed her phone to tell her old friend.

I told the story a few years ago of a friend I hadn’t seen since high school who posted on FB that she was at SFO and her luggage had gone missing and what was she going to do for the presentation she had to give the next day?

And that is how Katherine found out I lived halfway between where that was going to be and the airport. I offered her my closet. Take anything. Don’t worry about getting it back to me. She thanked me, did a fast trip to Macy’s instead–but allotted two unexpected hours out of her travel plans to spend catching up with me in person. We had such a good time. We had made such good choices of friends when we were teenagers forty years earlier.

She had finally found the love of her life while living in Maine. Frank was a one man show: a lawyer in a small town, the public defender, the reporter for the one-man newspaper: all community service all the time.

When he wasn’t being a roadie for the university’s ukulele band. I wish I could have met him.

Then the pancreatic cancer. The local station covering that group’s coming to play for him while he was in hospice. Her gratitude. All caught on a video she thought she’d never see again.

She lives in Virginia now to be close to her elderly mom.

And then this old friend in Maine went, wait–that’s–!!!

My widowed friend called the station, and they were as thrilled to hear from her as she was to hear their response: they sent her a copy so that she could see it, too. So that she could have it.

From when Frank was still alive to hear his love coming back to him in the faces and music of his friends as his wife held his hand and, briefly, lifted his arm to carry the beat like he would have done had he still been able.

Their story starts at 2:12.

3 Comments so far
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Beautiful story. Thanks for sharing. If you like Ukulele music, check out the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain on YouTube.

Comment by Anne 02.03.23 @ 1:59 am

How special and heartwarming to find after her loss. Have you ever heard Jake Shimabukuro? He writes new music, but also covers a wide range of songs. Check out his TED performance of Bohemian Rhapsody.

Comment by DebbieR 02.03.23 @ 7:59 am

What a wonderful story! Such serendipity.

Comment by ccr in MA 02.06.23 @ 10:03 am

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