An Update On Life July 1, 2017 Since all lives are different and I’m not privy to the ends and outs of all your lives, this is about mine. I’m an old retired guy with a good wife and what has been a good life since retirement. Before that it was hit and miss. I retired with a lung disease, emphysema. COPD is the current term in use, an umbrella name to cover two or more diseases of the lungs. I also have heart disease but then I suppose everyone has something as we age. I find most everything physical is harder to do and takes help of some kind. I am slowly deteriorating but compensate when I can. I play harmonica to exercise my lungs, and strengthen my diaphragm, and hopefully blow out these lungs a bit, getting rid of some bad air and hopefully allowing a bit more oxygen into my lung from time to time. Some days I play the harmonica well. Other times I don’t sound so good. I have recently become interested in the wooden flute, a Native American type flute that does not make the sounds of western music but under my control a series of grunts and groans, squeaks, and what have you. However, like the old violin, under the control of a master hand, can be made to sound melodic and soothing, peaceful and enchanting. I'm merely going to try to get rid of some of my squeaks and bring a peaceful sound as I engage my damaged lungs with a new device. However, for some of us this is more difficult than it might seem. Old souls like mine come slowly to something new. I thought I could go to some flute shop, pick out a good looking stick with holes and a mouthpiece, lean back in my comfy chair out in the shade of my patio and bring forth music so sweet sounding surely the angels might pause to listen. Not so, it ain’t going to happen, kid. First off you don’t pick out a flute, pay your money, and go on your merry way. You have to listen to all these various pitch-squeaks, find out what tree these sticks come off of, do I want hard wood or a softer piece. A high pitch or a lower key. I thought I was worldly and wise because I play a harmonica. Only thing playing a harmonica does for you is qualify you to be confused. For example, why is F# the highest pitch on a harmonica and G the lowest when both are low keyed flutes. Next you encounter something like, “Will your fingers reach the holes?” Why, of course they will. Maybe not. After listening to a half dozen flutes played by a master craftsman in the woodworking trade, and listening to what forest in the world they represented, I found the holes too close together for both me hands. Now your two hands of fingers cover six holes. I picked out a beautiful flute in the key of C Major (nice to accompany a piano) but the holes were too close together. Too, my arthritic finger grows seven-eights of an inch in the wrong direction. Nor does it want to cover any hole but when forced will cover the hole but when raised to allow that hole to contribute, it simply will not go back to the right place and hole It moves in the other direction. A minor problem. I am becoming a bit frustrated and while this flute manufacturer is gracious and most helpful, I expect if he were not trying to make a living he’d like to give me the boot and tell me to get lost. I have tried out three flutes ad still can’t find a flute I’m happy with. He has invited me back out tomorrow afternoon to try and find solutions to my minor problems. He and his his good wife who is a partner in this business have some ideas that may work for an old man with arthritic hands and send him home, happy with the flute he has selected. Tomorrow is make it or break it day as far as I am concerned. I’ll either come home with another beautiful flute or not. The decision made tomorrow will be final and I’m sure the angels are waiting in anticipation.