Sometime during my college years, my father, the hornplayer, got drafted for a local run of Haydn’s Creation, the first time I believe he had actually performed in that piece, and in his letter — those quaint things we exchanged in the days before the Internet — he commented of the opening performance: “God was late.” He meant the principal trombonist whose office was to form the backbone of the orchestral response to the Biblical injunction: “Let there be light,” but I had to wait until Christmas vacation to have it explained.
God was late. Well, Dominion Virginia Power really. It’s been a long goddam fifty hours without light, heat, phones, or Internet, but at least I have a gas stove and water heater, I was able to find enough batteries to keep a small emergency radio working, nothing so far has fallen on the house and I don’t live on the Jersey Shore.
Lacking a trombone, or the embouchure required to operate one, I stepped out on the porch with my gong when the lights came back on, and rang it.