I did something different tonight–I joined a community choir.  One of my colleagues formed a community choir, and I pledged to join the bass section.  My wife wasn’t too happy that I made the commitment, although I know she will be in the audience when we put on some community performances next spring.  Choir practice started last week, but I was unavailable.  I went tonight for the first time, but I’m not sure whether or not to continue.  Part of me says I shouldn’t do it, because I’m already overcommitted, and time is precious.  Choir practice is scheduled for two hours every Tuesday night.  Another part of me is urging me to do something different for a change.  This definitely is different!
Joining a choir hearkens back to my youth, when I regularly participated in high school and church choirs.  When I was in high school, I starred in a couple of school musicals.  After high school, I kept up the hobby by singing in church choirs, but my interest gradually faded.  Singing in a choir requires a high degree of discipline and commitment that I did not have when I was younger.  I still don’t know if I have what it takes to stay committed to this endeavor.  I haven’t read sheet music in years, and reading the music elicited feelings akin to getting back on a bicycle years after the last ride (I haven’t ridden in years either).  I had forgotten what it was like to sing with discipline, which is a far cry from free-spirited, entertaining karaoke.  The songs we sang tonight are very old medleys penned by the likes of Bach and Mozart, among others.  They require a strong grasp of range, melody, rhythm, and harmony.  Nevertheless, I enjoyed reliving the way I used to practice singing.  Whether I’ll enjoy it week in and week out remains to be seen.  Like a classroom, choir practice will retrain me in a discipline that disappeared from my life years ago.  In the end, I think it will be well worth the effort, because I will be part of what I think will be an amazing choir.  My colleague, the choir director, is also a music instructor and has directed many, many choirs.  He is autocratic and will drive us to excel like a drill sargeant, which is exactly what we need.  I also look forward to meeting many new friends, Korean and American, who share the same passion for singing.  Together, we shall make beautiful music.
Blog Notes:  I spoke to my sister this weekend.  She said that my grandma’s condition has stabilized.  The operation was very traumatic to her system.  She is a very strong lady, and I am hopeful that she will heal, even at 94 years old.  We moved our return trip to the U.S. up to May, increasing the chance I will see her again.

Books by MG EdwardsMG Edwards is a writer of books and stories in the thriller and science fiction-fantasy genres. He also writes travel adventures and children’s books. A former U.S. diplomat, he served in South Korea, Paraguay, and Zambia before leaving the Foreign Service to write full time.

Edwards is author of six books. His memoir, Kilimanjaro: One Man’s Quest to Go Over the Hill, was finalist for the Book of the Year Award and the Global eBook Award. He has published four children’s picture books in the World Adventurers for Kids Series: Alexander the Salamander; Ellie the Elephant; Zoe the Zebra; and a collection featuring all three stories. His book Real Dreams: Thirty Years of Short Stories is an anthology of 15 short stories.

Edwards lives in Taipei, Taiwan with his family. He has also lived in Austria, Singapore and Thailand. For more books or stories by M.G. Edwards, visit his web site at www.mgedwards.com or contact him by e-mail at me@mgedwards.com or on Twitter @m_g_edwards.

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  1. looyahn's Gravatar looyahn
    January 24, 2006    

    you lucky guy, do what you favor. as a youngman I can’t pile out any time to do what i really like to do.

  2. quemino's world's Gravatar quemino's world
    January 24, 2006    

    Glad to hear your Grandmother is doing better. Also, congrats on the write up in the magazine. I think that staying in the choir will definately be worth it. I think we working people spend so much time trying to do all the serious and important stuff for other people that we often lose sight of little hobbies and/or creative outlets that are just for ourselves. Don’t you think so?

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