This week marked my first week of actually playing gigs with the Navy. I finally felt like I have a purpose! It also reinforced the feeling that I’ve had all along my journey: I’m going to LOVE this job.
Monday we had off, but I did receive a phone call…there was a last-minute gig on Tuesday and I got put on it! So instead of Thursday being my very first performance, it was Tuesday. Unfortunately it was a memorial service for the CO of the U.S.S. Truman who died suddenly last week. If you want, you can read an article about it here. Very sad. I’m not sure how good of an omen it is for my first real gig to be a funeral. Eek.
What was cool about that gig though, was that it was on a ship! An aircraft carrier at that! I’m so lucky to be in such a cool job. Thursday was my next gig, and it was for a change of command ceremony at NAS Oceana (NAS stands for Naval Air Station, if you are wondering), which is over in Virginia Beach. It was in a hangar bay. Apparently, a lot of gigs are played in this particular hangar bay, so I’m sure I’ll be there again!
Friday was really busy, I had two gigs. The first one was for another change of command ceremony for a submarine. We got to play right on the pier,only feet away from a powerful nuclear submarine! Totally awesome. Except it was really cold! My fingers could hardly move. At least we were able to wear our awesome navy issued peacoats (I’m being totally serious, these are like the best peacoats in the world!) Luckily here it won’t get much colder than that (it was in the 40s), at least nothing like Rochester! The second gig was for a ribbon cutting ceremony for a VA Clinic up in Hampton, VA. It was nice and short, and much warmer! Haha.
And then last night we marched in a parade. It was the Grand Illumination parade in downtown Norfolk. I guess I didn’t realize how big this parade was, but it was huge! There were balloons (think Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade on a slightly smaller scale), lots of lit up floats, and so many people! It was even broadcast on local TV. Here’s the link to the video (the band is at 6:17):
I feel really lucky that I get to do this as my job! I’m sure I’ll get sick of it at some point, but honestly, I don’t think I’ll want to quit. I will just have to remember how much it sucked not having a playing job, and how frustrating it was! This job will also allow me to do plenty of other things, so I hopefully will never be bored.
So that’s all for now, next week I have no gigs (Thanksgiving week), although I have plenty of wind ensemble rehearsals – we have a concert coming up on the 29th. Very much looking forward to that. And then we only have a couple more weeks until I go on leave for two weeks for Christmas! It will be nice to relax for a while. Its been a crazy 6 months, but I don’t regret one bit of it!
Oh and if you hadn’t noticed, I have changed the look of my blog, and I have moved it from blogger.com to wordpress.com. I’ve been wanting to make the change for awhile, and I finally got around to it! Enjoy.