Encounters Friday 5 on the RevGals' site.
"Please name five encounters in your life leading to unexpected results."
1. My first encounter with the desert—it was in the southwestern USA, in New Mexico. Oh, I knew about the magic and the lore of the desert, but was not prepared to discover how its spare beauty searched me and stripped me clean of pretensions. Well, at least of some pretensions and a few vanities.
2. Singing in the chorus for Johannes' Brahms «Ein deutsches Requiem» as an undergrad music major. I love Brahms' four Symphonies, play a lot of his short piano pieces and the Handel Variations, but I was less than enthusiast about needing another credit of "musical organization" because I hadn't done one the previous semester. During the summer term they typically had a lot of grad students, so always practiced and performed a larger, more complex work than during the regular academic year. The evening of our performance the profundity of the music brought me to tears.
3. My first unplanned taste of calamari! I was on a weekend visit to a church I was candidating for; my host family took several of us out to Saturday evening dinner at a small Italian restaurant. I almost always order a side salad or an antipasto, and when we'd all finished, my host commented, "their salads always are good, but this time adding in the calamari made it extra good." I thought to myself, "now I've done it!" and I kept doing it after that.
4. Discovering yellow and many – but definitely not all – of its variations as my favorite color. That was long ago, in second grade or so! I'd always found yucky greenish-yellows very ugly and off-putting, but after finding a few wonderful yellows, it became my "most favored" color, and yellow probably dominates or at least is a big part of close to 85% or 90% or my own art.
5. Discovering school! It was senior year of HS. Before then, I'd always considered school something you had to do. I couldn't find anything to love about school, nor did I believe there was anything to hate about it, though I had classmates who did one or the other. I'd been an ok but unenthusiastic student. Then came Mrs Hartley's American History class, and oh, wow! She taught us how to think, and why to think. How and why to do history, and I was hooked on history and on school.