Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Sunday, June 10, 2012

Music to Get Ejected By . . .


Okay, I'm not sure, but I think this is what it looked like . . .

 Dad had a new toy.
A small musical instrument called a ‘musette’.
The fact that he was in his first year of university didn’t stop him from playing it.
He and a group of friends were riding the streetcar home from Sunday Services.
They were a happy bunch.
Talking.
Laughing.
Dad was tinkering about on his new toy.
Much to the discomfort of the other passengers.
I should mention, here, that Dad has a beautiful singing voice.
I’ve never heard him play the musette.
Possibly because of what follows.
Moving on . . .
The streetcar conductor called back to the group of boys, “You! On the harmonica! Please stop playing!”
Dad stopped.
For a moment.
Then, thinking that the conductor could no longer hear him over the noise of the rest of the passengers, he started again.
“You! Stop playing or I’ll have to kick you off the bus!”
Dad sighed and dropped the musette into his lap.
He looked down at it.
Just one more . . .
“Okay. That’s it!
The bus slid to a sudden stop.
“You! With the harmonica! Off!”
Dad got to his feet.
“And the rest of you with him! Off!”
His friends looked at each other.
Then, disgusted, they too got to their feet and followed the author of their misfortunes off the bus.
And began the long walk back to the University.
Moving ahead nearly seventy years . . .
My Husby and I had moved our family to Edmonton.
Six hours north of where I was raised.
I met an elderly couple at church.
We started to visit.
They discovered that my maiden name was Stringam.
“Well, who do you belong to?” the man asked.
“Mark is my dad,” I said proudly.
“Mark,” he said. Then, “Mark! He got me kicked off the streetcar!”
The good things we do are quickly forgotten.
The mistakes?
They go on forever.

8 comments:

  1. Good stories become legends.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think this one definitely hit 'legend' status!

      Delete
  2. Did your dad ever say why he was compelled to play the instrument over and over :) Too cute ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He never did. Maybe he thought that he could wear down the other passengers on the bus?

      Delete
  3. I still have my Dads harmonica's...saaaaaaay....I don't usually take the bus but......

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's worth it just for the blog material . . .

      Delete
  4. Well I'm betting there's not too many people in the world whose claim to fame is being kicked off public transport for playing the harmonica! Loud and proud!!!

    ReplyDelete

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