The music for this festival provided by a band. Many decades ago this church had an actual organized band but what we call “the band” these days can best be described as “my family and whoever else Dad- who is also the director- can convince to join”. As evidence- this year’s trumpet section consisted of Dad, my uncle, my aunt, my sister, my cousin and the pastor’s son. Our repertoire consists of hymns, polkas and marches- all the same ones that the band played 100 years ago. That is a good thing as we only practice 2-3 times a year and only about half the band can attend any of the rehersals.
This year I sat next to Dad during the day’s festivities. I came away reminded of how much I admire him. While he and I don’t always see eye to eye I truly admire his conviction in his beliefs. I admire his commitment to his family. I admire his strong faith in God and how that faith allows him to remain calm in most any crisis. I believe everything happens for a reason. I am a member of a local church and manage to attend services a couple times a month. But I felt like a fake when seated next to Dad.
As I drove home last night I wondered what would happen to this festival and to my family in the years to come. Dad is only 62 so he should be with us for some time yet, but someday he won’t be. Someday someone else is going to have to direct the band- literally and figuratively. I can only pray that myself, my sister and my cousins will be able to do half as good a job as he does.