"Want to hear me play my violin?"
I wouldn't have blamed them if they'd run from the house screaming but, being top quality house guests, they nodded eagerly and Miss8 raced off to her bedroom to grab her instrument.
"How long has she been playing?" our guests inquired.
Ah, there's the problem, I thought to myself, they're expecting some sort of child prodigy.
"Weeks," I told them. "We haven't found a decent spot to hide the damn thing yet."
In fact our hiding spots have been so bad the other day Tracey was cleaning the kitchen when she heard the sweet dulcet sounds of a bow being drawn back and forth across the strings. She stopped for a moment to listen and decided there had been some fantastic improvement since the previous week...after which she tore through the house like spooked horse because she'd all of a sudden realized Miss8 was at school so the little person playing the borrowed instrument was actually Miss2.
I would love to be able to play an instrument myself but when my primary school attempted to teach me to play the recorder I realized even at that very young age I have stumpy fingers, no natural talent and no patience, so it's never eventuated. I sing and I write my own melodies and lyrics on long trips in the car. It's enough. Tracey, who sits beside me in the passenger seat, might say it's more than enough. But I really want my kids to have the opportunity to create music, so I guess risking friendships by listening to spontaneous concerts in the kitchen is a small price to pay.
In no time at all Miss8 was standing, beaming, before us, bashing out Hot Cross Buns. I've never heard of this tune and actually thought she was playing Three Blind Mice at first, but you know I looked it up on Youtube after our guests had left (and the kids were in bed) and I was pleasantly surprised to find her rendition was recognizably similar.
Can I confess something? I'm more than a little bit proud of my little girl. She's already better at playing an instrument than her old man.
And from what Tracey told me, Miss2 might already better than all of us.