SHARING A LIFE - Page 2 ©2002 Deborah Henson-Conant

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This was the car I had when I first met my best friend, and the car was vaguely infamous, though I don't think she knew that at the time. At that time, the relationship of my instrument and my car was still moot. Nobody asked me to bring my harp anywhere, so the harp and the car were strangers, not dependent upon each other in any way.

But suddenly that changed. One day someone actually offered to pay me to play the harp. There was only one hitch. I actually had to GET the harp to the gig. I looked at the harp and I looked at the car. No way.

"If only, if only..." I moaned. If only my Dad gave my SISTER the Beetle and gave ME the Squareback. If only the Beetle wasn't totaled, then my sister might TRADE cars with me.

But the Beetle WAS totaled and even though years later, my sister actually DID trade me her squareback for the Bug (and I painted the Squareback a deep forest green and drove it across the country with TWO harps in the back), that has nothing to do with this digression.

What I did, faced with the harp and the VW Bug, was I got my friend Bob, a physics major, to assess the situation. It is good to get a second opinion. Especially when the first opinion is your own. Particularly when you are desperate.

And I was desperate. Buying the harp, even though it was used, was the most daunting monetary achievement I’d ever attempted. Buying a “harp-friendly” car was not a financial option. Bob was my only hope. I dragged the harp down and put it next to the car.

"Harp," I said and showed him the harp. "Car," I pointed out. "Tell me it’s possible to get this harp in that car. Please, please tell me it’s possible.”

Next: Adventures in Applied Physics