Villa Lobos and Campfire’s burning.

Roberto’s kitchen, in a little house on the other side of San Francisco, is a somewhat chaotic location combining food prep and wood-workshop.  From this unremarkable setting, every three weeks or so emerges, like a butterfly, a brand new, unique and handcrafted guitar.  We sat at Roberto’s table and watched as he unwrapped several examples of completed projects and others in progress, and we were charmed. 

guitars 2

guitars 3

Martin plays Bach and Villa Lobos.  I can bash out four chords with or without a campfire.  And now, after an abstinence of ten years, we have become the owners of a family guitar. 

guitars 1

Musically speaking, it is definitely more Campfire’s burning than Villa Lobos, but it is full of character, and we really loved Roberto so, given our price bracket, we decided that we would far rather put bread on his table than spend it on an over-painted, mass produced Chinese orange box. 

Naturally all my music books are stored in a crate in a loft in Hatfield.  And I never had anything in Spanish anyway.  Luckily the internet has seriously come of age since I was last in the habit of learning songs, and there is a whole community of lovely generous people posting free guitar chords for just about any song in any language, key and style (and a few your grandmother might not approve of). 

So the next project will be to cut the nails, toughen up the finger tips and polish up those four chords in time for Scout camp at the end of the year. 

Joni Day

“Granny”, said the little girl.  “Do you have some fruit that I can take to school?  It’s Joni day”. 

“It’s what day?” queried the grandmother. 

“Joni day.  There’s a little boy in first grade called Joni and he always brings fruit to school, so once a week the whole school has to bring a healthy snack like Joni”…

The Joni is my son.  The grandmother, who told me the story this morning, is my English student. 

I’m still trying to decide what learning point I should take from this…

Should we be pondering the irony that we are probably better ambassadors for fruit than we are for the Gospel? 

Or should we be encouraged by the idea that if we quietly model something consistently enough for long enough, then eventually it will have an impact? 

Have I been as consistent for Jesus as I have for bananas?