When in Rome…

Photo by Carlo Raso

I know it takes all sorts of people to make the world go round.

My daughter and I were at the symphony concert the other weekend. We had been offered comp tickets by one of her instructors, and I was excited to see both the violin concerto as well as the Resphigi piece that required nine percussionists.

We were surrounded by all sorts of people. Some were older, and obvious season ticket holders. Some were younger, and dressed to the nines. And then there was another set.

The couple attracted my attention because as soon as the clapping started for the violin soloist, they jumped to their feet and moved to the door. They left before most people were on their feet for the standing ovation, and missed the encore completely.

They came back at the very end of intermission and clambered over a bunch of people to get to their seats. I didn’t think anything more of them until we were all leaving.

They were right in front of us. And although the woman had to have been six feet in her bare feet, she was wearing what must have been five inch heels. I was marvelling that anyone could pull that off – I would have injured myself. And then I noticed the woman was staggering. She was inebriated. Then her companion turned to her and said, “what an great tambourine presentation.” She slurred something and grabbed for the handrail going down the stairs.

My daughter snickered. Nine percussionists on stage, all working together on incredibly complex parts in a piece filled with other complexities, and the man picked out the tambourine?

Like I said, it takes all sorts.

I’m glad that this couple made the effort to go and support an organization very well worth the time and ticket price. But I had to explain to my daughter than “when in Rome, do as the Romans.” And that means dress appropriately, don’t get stupid drunk and don’t try to fake that you understand something.

Photo by Carlo Raso


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