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A Little Chinese Coin


A Little Chinese Coin

I recalled again that time when I went out of a passengers hall in a Chinese airport, sat on a curbstone, took my new Er Hu out of its case and practiced for my leisure. Er Hu is a Chinese violin whose luckier individuals play in concert halls in the company of big orchestras and whose less lucky individuals play in the company of blind street beggars. And when I say “I practiced” I mean I did that thing that can make even a Zen monk take out a Chinese machine gun and spray that player again and again until each and every nerve in his body can be sure that no hand would rise off the blood pool and move the bow over the strings for one last time. And although the notes were so terrible, and perhaps because they were so terrible, a Chinese guy who passed by pitied me, took out a little Chinese coin, put it in the open case and went away. And when I say “a little Chinese coin” I mean a little Chinese coin + something like a hundred American dollars, because this is what I would be willing to pay to be able till the end of my days to tell the story of the involuntary begging that came my way in a Chinese airport.


From → Music, On the Road

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