So the other big house thing in the last couple weeks was something we’d talked about for a long time and finally decided to bite the bullet and do. We bought a piano.
The background: Ben is quite the musician; he attended LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts (what a mouthful) in NYC–better known as the Fame school–where he played piano and trumpet, and in college he minored in trumpet performance. He decided against a career in music because he likes stability (hee), but he still plays trumpet in a community band and whenever he has access to a piano he plays for hours at a time. We had talked and talked about getting one but were daunted by the expense and hassle or getting one into the apartment, but last month we decided it was time. He picked out a Boston upright 49.5″ piano (it only came in a really shiny black, not the matte I liked, but oh well) and we arranged for the piano delivery company guy to come visit and see how they could get it into our 4th floor apartment.
I called to leave him a message. The voicemail recording was: “Thank you for calling Allston Piano Movers! The Fine way to move a Steinway!” I laughed for about 5 minutes. In fact, I’m giggling now. Is that not an awesome slogan?
Anyway, Bobby came out to look at our stairs and windows and after one glance at the stairs he said he’d never move a piano up them. A crane it was! We spent part of the weekend taking the big front window apart, with the help of our very patient and kind neighbor who has redone all of his. It’s 44″ wide by 54″ tall, with curved glass, and I was SO nervous about the whole thing. While the window was out Ben took the opportunity to replace the broken sash cord on one side and the worn one on the other, so now that window opens and closes really well. The weights inside the frame weigh about 20 pounds each.
I had made Ben promise he’d be the one to supervise the delivery, since the mere thought of a crane+piano+our apartment made me feel queasy, but he ended up with a meeting he couldn’t change, so I was on duty.
The crane man, piano truck and police detail all showed up right on time.
The impressively bearded window man climbed around to remove the storm frame.
And then all of a sudden while I was taking the photos of the window, the piano was off the truck, on the crane, and in the air! It took about 3 minutes. I sprinted downstairs to shoot a photo:
And then ran back up to see the inside part:
There were a couple interesting minutes while the enormous men hauled the piano in the window.
But before I knew it they were wheeling it down the hall to the dining room!
*Poof!* It was just under an hour from minute the crane showed up (before the piano/police) to the time the window guy finished putting the storm window back in. Amazing. I highly recommend Allston Piano Movers–it wasn’t cheap but they worked fast and carefully and made all the annoying permit arrangements, etc.
So now while I cook, Ben plays piano! It’s the loveliest thing. He mostly plays American Standards (think Ella Fitzgerald–all the great old Porter, Gershwin, etc. stuff), but he’s working on some more classical things, too. Also, the Pride & Prejudice piano score. I shot a shaky little video while I was in the middle of making dinner last night and Ben was playing that (he would be appalled to see this if he knew, and would insist on mentioning that the piano tuner hasn’t come yet!):
The kitchen was only that messy until I finished cooking, I swear!
ETA: Ben actually read the post and watched the video. His comment: “The piano is SO out of tune. I’m calling them right now.”