Back in the 1980s, when I was enamored by musical instruments, I ordered a mountain dulcimer kit and my sister, Dolores, put it together for me. After I sold my house and most everything in it, the dulcimer was the only musical instrument I allowed myself to keep. It traveled with me by staying in the closet from 2005 until 2010. While in Carefree for 3 months, I discovered that Sammi Carr was willing to teach mountain dulcimer for a paltry sum of $1 for copying fees!!! I went to her and soon learned that I would learn how to play better if we restrung it for a left-handed person. I had to buy a set of strings from her for only $4 and I was ready to go! Ah, but there was a crack in the dulcimer from traveling and hitting road bumps, so I learned how to glue it back together and now no one knows it was cracked! No excuse, right? But I was still having a hard time getting my hands to do what they should and it seemed to take me longer than others to learn the songs. I wasn't too deterred. Sammi said I should really have a cover to protect the dulcimer, so I looked around and then asked my Mom to make me one. Last summer, I bought quilted material and told her how I wanted pockets for picks, pencils, etc on the inside of the cover and a big pocket on the outside for a notebook of songs. She and I did a fine job of making that cover with a long handle so I could carry it over my shoulder. Now I had no excuses and enough invested in it to make sure it stayed out of the closet.
I still consider myself a beginner because I haven't played it since leaving Florida and forgot almost every tune. Even though this festival was a bit of a drive (6 hours or so), I decided to go for it. I worked enough extra hours to cover the days off at Mammoth Cave, and decided to stay at a motel. I couldn't get into the one where the instructors and most of the students were, so I stayed across the freeway in a Comfort Inn. That just meant I didn't take part in the jams they had, until the last night when I felt I could play along by playing the chords as they were called out by an instructor - how nice!
The festival was great fun and very worthwhile - I'm glad I went. Steve gave me some thoughts and ideas on how to learn a song or tackle ones that seem too hard to play and I have become enthused again about playing. And I made a new friend who lives in Ohio!
On Saturday morning, the village had a parade to start their Woodburn Days. The class is in a building on Main Street, and the post office is next door, but otherwise Main Street seems to be more of a residential street with hardly any businesses on it! Lois likes parades, so we played "hookey" to watch it go by. I took a few pictures, of course.