This weekend our neighborhood had a subdivision wide yard sale.
It was a veritable garage sale gold mine for the high intensity yard saler.
One out of every 3 or 4 houses had their driveway filled with furniture, clothes, knick-nacks and dusty exercise equipment.
I drove through the streets as I was on my way home from an errand.
I didn't bother stopping at most of the homes because I was only looking for one thing: couches.
The couches in our game room have been abused for several years now and are overdue for retirement.
I have put off buying new ones because whatever we get will continue to be abused, so I haven't wanted to spend much, and I have been hoping to find a couch with a hide-a-bed.
I almost didn't see this set because it was kind of hidden by bushes from the direction I was coming.
But when I did see it, I pulled over and went to inquire.
This set, which has been recently reupholstered, has a hide-a-bed in the larger couch, and was within my budget at $100!
J calls them the Cheese Cake Couches, because they reminded him of the rasberry swirl cheescake he ate today.
(I am going to have to get a new rug.)
Now please understand that I try hard to not be material, and to not judge others or myself by possessions.
But, regardless of my efforts, I have felt at times in my life that I have reached an accomplishment because of something that I have aquired.
Like the first time I bought a car from a dealership (instead of my parents or a friend), the first time I rented a house instead of an apartment, when I bought a home instead of renting (I don't own that home anymore), when I got a job that offered benefits.
You know, things that showed that I had met some imagined status.
Well, one of those things happened today.
I have dreamed of this. I have even been in possession of one or two of these when it technically belonged to someone else.
As I was driving through a culdesac eyeing secondhand wares, I spotted a cardboard sign.
A light shone down on me from heaven and I heard the angels singing to share my joy.
The sign said:
It was a good thing there were no cars or children in front of me, because I was staring out the side window at the sign.
I quickly pulled over and went to ask.
Surely there had to be a catch.
Nothing is actually free, right?
If it sounds too good to be true it probably is, and all that.
I hardly dared to hope.
The only catch was that in order to get the piano I had to be the first one to drive to the house it was at and pick it up.
I visited with the couple giving the piano away and made arrangements to meet them at the other house to pick it up.
They wanted nothing for it, other than someone to take it away so they wouldn't have to move it.
So after calling a friend and his son to help, (and isn't that the most cliche favor in the world?), my piano arrived at my house this afternoon.
This piano has been loved and well used for many years.
If it had a voice it could speak to me of the children who first learned middle C on this piano.
It could tell of the tears that have leaked out because of the beautiful music that came from it.
It could tell stories of how it got paint splatters, how it's wood was chipped and scratched in places.
It could talk of the families that loved it as it shared its music with them.
Of the homes that were warmer, more comfortable, calmer, because it's notes floated through them. As I dusted it and played my first few songs on it I bonded with it. I felt it. I loved it.
It is old and has seen better days, but it is beautiful, and it has a soul.
Maybe that's a poor description, but this piano, old and abused as it is, carries power. It brought it's strength in to my home.
I am so excited to have it, and so blessed to have gotten it.
And somehow, I feel that I have crossed that imaginary line where yesterday I was a lesser person, because today I own a piano.