Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Faulty Pipework Causes Distress

Here in sunny Buttonwood Bay, the start of the week long Springfest events has coincided with a return to more normal mid Florida weather and I've taken the opportunity to get out and about and enjoy both.

Yesterday I went for my walk at 5:30pm when the temperature was still in the mid 70's and the darkening sky still held enough blue to keep me happy. My mp3 was playing "Glee" songs and I was as happy as an Irish fiddle player in a pub full of tourists.

And speaking of fiddle players neatly brings me to the subject of this post - annoying music.

Over the last few days our neighbours here have dusted off their karaoke machine and entertained us for hours by singing along to country & western songs. I use the words 'entertained' and 'singing' very loosely as karaoke county and western is up there alongside having my eyes poked with a sharp stick and eating a pickle on my list of "disturbing experiences I'd prefer to avoid."

After my walk, I decided to head back out to capture a lakeside sunset. The wispy cloud formations seemed promising but it was such a lovely early evening that I didn't care one way or the other. Just to sit down by the edge of the lake at sunset, any sunset, would be wonderful with the still warm temperature and hardly a breath of wind.

As the sun was setting behind the tree lined horizon across the lake, I took a few photos but I soon realised that none would be spectacular as it just wasn't going to be one of 'those' nights for sunset photography. I put the camera down and got ready to simply enjoy both the peace and quiet and the scene before me.

Now I've mentioned before that in this park we have a few creatures that are best avoided at all times, like snakes and gators. Last evening another creature was added to that list for me - the Lesser Kilted Scottish Bagpiper.

There I was, slowly swinging on my rocking bench at the edge of the lake, taking in God's wonderful sunset before me, when suddenly the peaceful atmosphere was rudely shattered by the the noise of 100 cats collectively having their tails stood on. Or to put it another way, the skirl of a set of bagpipes.

I think I've mentioned this piper before on my blog. When he decides to grace the lakeside area with his presence, we can hear him inside our house with the windows closed. That's bad enough and we can always drown him out by putting on the tv, but when he is only a few feet away, it's another matter altogether. Sure as Scotch eggs are Scotch eggs, when the sun finally dropped below the horizon, he opened up with "Amazing Grace", a tune so over used by songsters and musicians everywhere that it's long since lost all its original meaning and certainly its grace.

I walked towards him as I'd already decided that I would blog about him and this time I wanted a photo to go with the description. Now I know that there are some people out there who like the bagpipes, even some non deaf people. A few of them were sitting in their golf carts near 'our' piper last evening and were encouraging him not to stop playing ! These people are dead to me !

After his first encore, I was close enough to ask him to move further down the path so he would be standing in front of the now set sun as I felt that if I was going to actually take his photo, it might as well be a decent and relevant one.

"Do you want me to play ?" he asked, thus managing to annoy me twice with one question.

"I'd rather you didn't", I replied, seeing as I hated his playing AND I was holding a still camera !

And so this is the result :

I was going to put a line across his eyes like you see on tv photos when they want to provide anonymity for not-yet-guilty criminals but I've tried this guy already and believe me, he's guilty.

Yes I know it may not be fair to have written this post making fun of this old guy who obviously has proud Scottish roots and loves the bagpipes. But I'm of the opinion that no form of music should be forced on others and I'd have been equally upset if someone had set up their boom box and started body popping on the grass by the lake. Not very likely in Buttonwood Bay I hear you say but then who'd have thought we'd have to listen to bagpipes at sunset either ???

So there you have it. I've outed our lone piper and those that like the noise/sound of the pipes can have a pop at me. It's a free country, even this one.

I'll just leave you with a final photo because like wanting a candy after having tasted something nasty, I don't want to close this post with a photo of him.

You can look at it and play Amazing Grace if you want to. Just not on the bagpipes, eh !


Ruth said...

I've never known who this Grace is and why she is so amazing.
PS stunning photos, well perhaps not the piper but, wow, the other two are the stuff of dreams

Daphne said...

I like bagpipes, in their place, which is on the atmospheric grey stone streets of Edinburgh. But actually, that's not the point, as you've said: it's that people don't have a choice as to whether to listen. And no matter how old he is, or how pround of his Scottish roots, he's being inconsiderate: I'd like to see that sunset - and I've seen it, you know, when I was in America!! - in peace. Lovely photos too, thank you.

rhymeswithplague said...

So what clan does he represent? His tartan is not Black Watch (Campbell) exactly, but close. Perhaps he is a MacDougal or a MacTavish, a Stuart or a Bruce?

He might be an Angus or even an put in the earplugs and have a little more compassion for your relatives, sir! (Not that he seems to have any for you...)

Jay said...

Can I hum? LOL!

We have a piper here in the city who comes out of whatever woodwork he was hiding in from time to time to serenade the shoppers. I don't mind too much because he's not a bad player, but I do feel terribly sorry for the shop staff on warm summer days when their doors are propped open and they have to listen to him ALL DAY!

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