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This week was somewhat busy so I didn't document it very well.

On Monday I brought some of my furniture to work because people had agreed to pick it up there. One lady sent her husband to get my bookshelf, another came to get my table. That was the last of my furniture. Now I have a folding chair and a nightstand until it's time to go.

Late Monday afternoon I left work for an hour. Wyatt, trombonist with the Kansas City Symphony, had offered to listen to the excerpts I'm preparing for an audition over Halloween weekend. I was very nervous. Playing in front of people is nerve-wracking every time. I also had not played the large bore for anyone since I started practicing it (except for the one time Eric and I had played duets) so I didn't know how it would go. I've found that people are often impressed that I was a circus musician, and there can sometimes be the assumption that I'm going to be ridiculously amazing. High expectations are frightening when you know you aren't living up to them.

Despite my misgivings the lesson went well...or at least, it was very helpful to me. I definitely didn't play my best, but Wyatt is a great teacher. He pinpointed some areas where I need work, and gave me suggestions for how to improve. I left his house feeling more confident and itching to try out some of his suggestions. I've had some teachers in the past who were incredibly negative; it was a relief to get constructive criticism and some tools to improve. Thank you Wyatt!!

After work I practiced.

Tuesday was quite slow. I listed instruments. I stayed after work to practice.

Wednesday, Matt suddenly appeared in the middle of the day. I'd thought he would be on vacation all week...but he always has so much to do, I really shouldn't have been surprised. I was happy to sell a few instruments that day, but nothing more exciting than that happened. That night it was surprisingly cold and I couldn't get my furnace to turn over, so I ended up getting a space heater which was just fine.

Thursday was slow again, and Matt did not make an appearance. At this point I'd listed most of the instruments on eBay...by Friday I expected to have all of them finished. It's been slow going. Every instrument needs pictures, and then those pictures need to be edited, and then uploaded to our POS system. Then I create the eBay listing, and that can go either quickly or slowly depending on how much info I've got on the instrument. If I have to research the model or brand or whatever it can take quite a while. Finally I upload the pictures to eBay, decide on a price, and post. Some listings can take 15-20 minutes to create.

After work I practiced a bit, grabbed some groceries, and got home.

Friday was a normal day at work. I left slightly early to go play my final gig with Flashback KC.

The weather had been pretty dreary and cold all week, but Friday night was clear and warm. There were many people eating dinner out on the patio at Pinstripes, where we were playing. I enjoyed joking around with the trumpet and sax players between charts, and watching people get into the music and get up to dance. This guy especially.

Sometimes dancing like this will happen thanks to adult beverages ;) But I found out later that this gentleman prefers dancing to lose weight. He needs to lose weight so that he can have knee surgery. He has changed his diet, and although he hates exercising, he loves to dance! So he does it, and disregards what others think. I was happy to hear his story and the reasons behind his joyful expressive dancing.

I know that many times I've seen people being rather "expressive" in public, and the thought has passed through my mind that "that person's weird" or "he/she must be drunk" or somesuch. I'm sure we all have thought it. But it's important to remember that whether they're weird or drunk or something else, people are still people. And everyone has different ways of feeling good, and free, and themselves. And as long as it's not harmful to yourself or others, whether it's "weird" or not doesn't matter at all. These were some of the thoughts I had after talking with this gentleman.

Anyway, the gig went very well. We had a responsive audience and enthusiastic dancers. For the first time I screwed up my courage and went to the front of the stage with the horn section for a little solo bit during "I Wish", and then again for our last song, "Beginnings", in which the trombone has a prominent solo. Dave (trumpet) and Tim (sax) seem to really like the first note of that solo...at least they have egged me about it plenty every time I've played it! So I made extra sure to hit it tonight. It was a good time and everyone had fun :)

Afterward I said my goodbyes. It's really been a pleasure playing with this group. This is how music should be: fun for the audience AND the performers. That's how you get a good experince. Anytime you're in Kansas City, go hear Flashback KC. They're incredible musicians and wonderful people.

The next day I had work in the morning. There were a few customers but overall it was slow. Afterward, even though I can't really afford it right now, I decided to treat myself to coal-fired pizza. After picking up the food I went straight home, to my leasing office, to deliver my lease termination notice along with a rather large check for the termination fees. As usual, the leasing office was closed. They're not supposed to be. I left a fairly annoyed message on the voicemail. Then back to the apartment. I have been living in a mess since last weekend; when my furniture was sold everything that was in or on it ended up on the floor.

Now it's time to start sorting things and finding out what will be making the cut to go to Florida, and what will go to the thrift store. To anyone who has given me knick-knacks or books or other such things, if I have to get rid of something that you gave me, I'm very sorry. I just can't fit all of this in my car, and can't ship it all either, and can't afford a moving service. Anyway, I managed to get a little more than half of my junk together in a pile in the living room. Yay?

On Sunday morning I woke later than usual...must have needed that sleep. I made a run to the thrift store and picked up some moving supplies at Walmart, then made another attempt at the leasing office. Of course they were closed during their normal business hours. I waited for 15-20 minutes, then said screw it, I have things to do. I left a voicemail describing what I was dropping off, and dropped my paperwork into the mail slot. It's supposed to be delivered by hand or certified mail, but if you're not there for either option, I don't know what anyone expects.

I went back to the apartment to sort more of my junk. Partway through the day I heard a commotion on the stairs, and soon after there was a knock on my door. I opened it to see an associate from the leasing office and two firemen. They asked if everything was ok, and if I'd smelled any smoke. Nope. A few minutes later I had to leave for rehearsal. There were ten or so firemen all around our building, and two fire trucks in the parking lot. An older lady was standing there fretting...she was the one who called the fire department because she'd either smelled or seen smoke. I overheard one of the firemen consoling her, saying, "It's ok, it's not a bother. You did the right thing." Damn straight. I'm glad to know she lives in my building.

Rehearsal was fine. The concert will be next week. After rehearsal I came home and cooked my food for the week, then allowed myself some time to just chill. The next few weeks will be extremely busy as I wrap things up at work, take some auditions, and prepare to start over in Florida.