Hurricane Harvey, which ravaged Houston and parts of Texas on August 27, left at least 38 dead and tens of thousands uprooted. As the devastation from the storm – the worst in 13 years – took its toll, one man sought solace in quietly playing the piano in his flooded home.
Aric Harding, a Houston pastor, had evacuated his home in Friendswood, Texas, after water from the hurricane started to flood his home and seep in through the floorboards. He later returned to pick up some supplies for his seven children, including stuffed animals and games to keep them occupied. His 13-year-old son, an avid piano player, had asked him to check on the family piano, to ensure it wasn’t destroyed.
On finding the piano intact, he decided to take a moment to play it. His friend recorded a video as he sat down and played the hauntingly beautiful tune, with water up to his knees.
Grammy-nominated singer Vanessa Carlton saw the video, and tweeted (below) offering her help. Ultimately, a few days later musical instrument company Yamaha, who also sponsors Carlton, agreed to replace the piano, while people from Harding’s church and his neighbourhood helped him clean up his home.
It’s also a time for adults to revisit their childhood.
Most adults look at childhood wistfully, as a time when the biggest worry was a scraped knee, every adult was a source of chocolate and every fight lasted only till the next playtime. Since time immemorial, children seem to have nailed the art of being joyful, and adults can learn a thing or two about stress-free living from them. Now it’s that time of the year again when children are celebrated for...simply being children, and let it serve as a timely reminder for adults to board that imaginary time machine and revisit their childhood. If you’re unable to unbuckle yourself from your adult seat, here is some inspiration.
Start small, by doodling at the back page of your to-do diary as a throwback to that ancient school tradition. If you’re more confident, you could even start your own comic strip featuring people in your lives. You can caricaturise them or attribute them animal personalities for the sake of humour. Stuck in a boring meeting? Draw your boss with mouse ears or your coffee with radioactive powers. Just make sure you give your colleagues aliases.
Pull a prank, those not resulting in revenue losses of course. Prank calls, creeping up behind someone…pull them out from your memory and watch as everyone has a good laugh. Dress up a little quirky for work. It’s time you tried those colourful ties, or tastefully mismatched socks. Dress as your favourite cartoon characters someday – it’s as easy as choosing a ponytail-style, drawing a scar on your forehead or converting a bath towel into a cape. Even dinner can be full of childish fun. No, you don’t have to eat spinach if you don’t like it. Use the available cutlery and bust out your favourite tunes. Spoons and forks are good enough for any beat and for the rest, count on your voice to belt out any pitch. Better yet, stream the classic cartoons of your childhood instead of binge watching drama or news; they seem even funnier as an adult. If you prefer reading before bedtime, do a reread of your favourite childhood book(s). You’ll be surprised by their timeless wisdom.
A regular day has scope for childhood indulgences in every nook and cranny. While walking down a lane, challenge your friend to a non-stop game of hopscotch till the end of the tiled footpath. If you’re of a petite frame, insist on a ride in the trolley as you about picking items in the supermarket. Challenge your fellow gym goers and trainers to a hula hoop routine, and beat ‘em to it!
Children have an incredible ability to be completely immersed in the moment during play, and acting like one benefits adults too. Just count the moments of precious laughter you will have added to your day in the process. So, take time to indulge yourself and celebrate life with child-like abandon, as the video below shows.
This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of SBI Life and not by the Scroll editorial team.