THANK YOU FOR SIGNING OUR GUESTBOOK
May 6, 2009: I had many goals for today:
I would try to meet as many people as I could to tell them about Alan Hovhaness and brotherhood.
I would gather as many signatures in the Symphony No. 11, "All Men are Brothers" score which was accompanying me from Mt. Monadnock to the Hovhaness/Chakmakjian home in Arlington.
I would try to better my 17.5 miles of May 4.
I prepared well. Water and snacks packed in my backpack. Cell phone and radio batteries-and spares-charged. Plastic "hobo-bags" over my socks in case of rain. Right ankle broken in 1982 motorcycle accident wrapped in elastic bandage.
I was lucky. I was now in easy radio range of the Boston area. From my handheld W1H Alan Hovhaness Memorial Station radio, I spoke with a nearly constant stream of people. Many listened enthusiastically about my mission, some telling me of Hovhaness compositions they had heard and loved, one gentleman even giving me a primer on basic Armenian greetings and expressions.
Two radio amateur operators, Alan and Gary, with whom I had spoken drove out to meet me on the road, They invited me to a coming gathering of their group at
(Had they instinctively sensed my addiction to ice cream?)
Jack Johnston had told me of a famous recording studio in Carlisle-the Blue Jay studio. Legend had it that famous groups would sneak in under cover to the studio's bunker-like structure and cut their albums in total lock-down security.
I discovered a softer side of Blue Jay's operations when on an ice cream break (yes, addicted to ice cream,) in Carlisle. I met a group of young students: their accompanying teacher told me that they had just finished recording their compositions at the Blue Jay studio and were being rewarded with their own ice cream break. We eagerly talked about Alan Hovhaness and the meaning of brotherhood. Everyone signed the "All Men are Brothers" score.
I was able to talk with so many others along the way: shop owners, passersby; all who were fascinated by the story of Hovhaness and eagerly added their names to the growing list of signatures in the "All Men are Brothers" score.
Was Alan Hovhaness' guide Francis Bacon there? My continuing route, the "Great Road" branched off-perhaps not a coincidence-to "Bacon Road."
It was a memorable day with all expectations not just realized but exceeded. Total mileage: 21.3 miles.
1: Radio Amateurs Gary, W1GFF, and Alan, K1ALL. Gary and Alan drove out to meet me after we had made contact via the W1H radio.
2: Martin Berkofsky meets young home-schooled musicians taking an ice-cream break after their recording session. Everyone signed the "All Men are Brothers" orchestral score.
3. The guardian angel was here again. From my "Great Road," the turn-off for the Minuteman Bike Path was "Bacon Road."