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Surfing with a Ukulele...

Last weekend, I happened to be hanging out at a friend’s store (Adrift Tahoe) on the beach at Lake Tahoe. One of the guys, Frank, was playing his guitar and I was having coffee and listening. I was quite content to just sit and listen. I remarked how nice it sounded. He stopped playing, jumped up, ran into the store and came back out with a ukulele. He handed it to me.

First, I stared at it. Frank then showed me how to hold it, how to strum it, and how to place my fingers along the strings for chords. Within a few moments, I was strumming my first three chords. I think I sat there for about 2 hours playing around with three chords and strumming. It was fun. I was mesmerized. Long after I had intended to leave, I put the ukulele back into the store and came home. But I kept hearing those chords. Uh oh!

On Wednesday, I went back and bought the ukulele.

In the past, I would have kept secret this new purchase. In fact, in the past, I may not even have picked up the ukulele again for fear I’d never be good at it. Perhaps it’s because I’m 60 now and time is running short; or perhaps it’s because I’ve finally realized that the happiest moments in my life have been when I was fully engaged, having fun and learning all at the same time, and that it doesn’t matter whether I am good or not. It seems so simple, but ...

So here I am on Wednesday afternoon, after I came home with my new ukulele. Not good, but happy.


Last week I wrote about how I wake up feeling upbeat by visualizing some thrilling activity that causes those good feeling chemicals to pulse through my brain even before my feet hit the floor. These past few days, I still do that but now I hear the Hukilau in my head while racing down a big wave. To think of all the fun things I may have missed out on because I was afraid I wasn’t good enough. Not anymore! How could this be anything but right?

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