And then on Sunday, oh joy, oh most divine gift ... I went with another friend to a recital by Anna Goldsworthy ("Piano Lessons") and three of the Conservatorium students she mentors.
This was at Janet Clarke Hall, Melbourne University. I never lived in "hall" at Monash University, but visited my boyfriend and his friends at Mannix College; I shared houses and flats with other students. Janet Clarke Hall was another experience altogether - so proudly intellectual, with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves in every room, full of ancient editions and tomes. So spaciously accommodating of opinion and thought, so traditional.
My friend had lived there as a music student in the late '60's. She gets regular missives from the alumni committee, inviting her to attend tasteful events and to donate. I was aware of Not Belonging as I sat among the very middle class, even bourgeois, alumni and their friends.
However, the music was something else. (And as we drank tea and coffee and indulged in fancy sweetmeats afterwards, I found myself "belonging" after all to this intelligent and cultured group of women and that was "something else".)
I witnessed a pianist who disappeared into the music she played. When I shut my eyes, she wasn't there, but the Appassionata was. Whereas the other two performers were definitely "there", performing. I got a whole new access to what it looks like to Perform.
I could not thank my friend enough for the privilege and enjoyment she afforded me, for FREE, last Sunday afternoon. Even now, I feast on the memory.