Jazz Man and Story teller
I wasn’t excited about the last seat in the last row of the small plane from Boston to Laquardia! Ugh! And they took my carryon to baggage claim . Double ugh!
I got my last seat and my seat mate was having a medical event so the sweet flight attendant asked if I could stand outside the lavatory for a few minutes while they decided the gentleman’s fate.
His name is John. He’s a recording artist. Jazz musician who teaches at NE Conservatory and flies to Boston twice a week to teach.
He is a survivor. An artist and a bit of a poet. He sang me some “scat” and I know the people at the back of the plane wished they were me! He told me of his digenerative muscle disease that has him “wheel chair committed”. His hands are mangled from the disease but he’s still playing trumpet. His “label” had two left handed trumpets built for him so the world would not be deprived of his gift. He has special sterling silver “mits” that allows his fingers to grip the “horn”. He says audience members just think he bejeweled but these are medical devices. He took a year to lear to play ‘lefty’! This man is driven.
we talked the whole fight about life and it’s curve balls. I opened his snacks, water and medication for him. His hands were unwilling.
He’s 70 ish and said there were days he just didn’t want to go on but the songs in his head had to go somewhere... they needed to be heard. Inspiring.
He he told me of his favorite meal at a dive bar in Paris during his 36th year. He was touring and he had garlic buttered escargot and Armenac. He’s not sure he loved the snails but remembers fondly the armenac!
He takes this flight a couple times a week. The flight attendants are like family to him.
His wife and driver meet him at laquardia. It’s clear he knows the gal who greets him at the plane with his wheelchair. I walk with them. I’m not sure I want to let this Jazz man go. They share stories of her newest addition to her family.
He is beloved. I guess the last seat at the back is not the worst seat after all!
Ive been touched by an angel!