I’m buying a guitar, an acoustic, from a friend, and I’m not really sure why.

I come from a musical family, learnt to play the piano to a high grade (was studying for my Grade 7 when I packed it in – Grade 8 is the teacher’s exam). My dad plays the guitar and sings, and has been know to pluck a banjo. He used to sing in a folk group (in the dim and distant past) and now does his bit for amateur operatics, and is the ‘singing’ member of a Burns’ Club. My mother plays the piano and used to join my Dad singing for a local choir. My sister learnt to play the flute and can tinkle the ivories a bit too (self taught, and much more natural than I).
So what’s all that got to do with a guitar?

Well I had toyed with the idea last year, but never really got around to it, one of those promises you make to yourself at New Year. So this year I mentioned it to a friend who said I could buy his guitar as it was sitting around gathering dust. I jumped at the chance.

Now ideally I would be saving up to buy a Clavinova, or such like, after all I know how to play a piano, so that would be much easier. Money however is the issue here, or is it?

I’m really not sure why I am buying a guitar. I do play a mean air guitar (doesn’t everyone?) but I’m not sure if mastering the real thing is what I’m after. Or maybe it’s fear of something new, I’ve not really tackled anything ‘new’ for a while. Stayed safely within my limits, and whilst, admittedly, learning the guitar’s not exactly a radical step forward, it may be triggering that fear. What will I be like if I try something like sky-diving!

I’ve realised that this purchase is reflecting a lot of things in my life than I am less than happy with. For a while now I’ve been talking about T’ai Chi, Alexander classes, badminton club, etc etc. I’ve followed them all up to the point where I actually need to interact with someone, phone someone. And then I stop. Am I becoming socially retarded? Will trying something ‘new’ be THAT bad? Why am I unwilling to pursue this, or anything else new.

This year, for me, is about change, not necessarily about changing bad habits, but about confronting change, willing and forcing myself to try new things, accept new challenges. And if I fail? Then at least I will have tried, and I can learn from that.

So I’m going to buy the guitar and see how it goes. Will I keep the practise? Or will it soon languish upstairs in the office, out of sight, out of mind, gathering dust. Who knows, and there is only one way to find out.