I just received the nicest gift of my life.

The guy I’ve been dating heard me play piano for the first time yesterday.  He had wanted to hear me play for quite some time.

Just so the comments won’t be filled with, “What?  I didn’t know you played piano!”, here’s a short summary of my piano life:

I love to play piano.  It’s been my life.  I was groomed to become a professional musician since I was four years old; while in high school, I decided that I didn’t want to turn pro or study music in college.  It wasn’t for me as a career.

When I was 13, I started taking college-level instruction at Boston Conservatory.  I did even did gigs at 13 — a reception at the (then) Ritz-Carlton and background music at a fashion show.

I have perfect pitch — I’ve been playing songs by ear since I was a year and a half old (if you believe my mom) and these days, I mainly play songs I love — anything from Stevie Wonder to Coldplay to 50 Cent (my sister’s favorite piano jam is my version of “Candy Shop”).

My favorite thing EVER is at parties with a group of people gathered around the piano, singing along and calling out requests and me playing them immediately, even if I’ve never tried playing those songs before!

Whew.

Despite my history with piano, I’m pretty private about it.  That’s why people are so often surprised to hear that I play.

Anyway, I had the opportunity to play frequently in college, but since then, I haven’t been so lucky.  Living in Somerville and then Boston, I just didn’t have access to a piano.

Enter my guy.

After hearing me play yesterday, he actually got me a guest pass for one of the universities near my apartment.  And it wasn’t easy to get — he had to fight for it.  But now I can go there and play piano pretty much whenever I want for the rest of the summer.

I was so blown away and touched by his kindness that I nearly burst into tears.

This is one of the most thoughtful things anyone has ever done for me.  I went, and I played my fingers off.  I’m working on a new arrangement of Stevie Wonder’s “Seems So Long,” and that song has some wonderfully complex harmonies with which I can have a lot of fun.

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