Strange But True Harp Stories

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Up on the Mountain Top

—by Mary Ellen Holmes, Fort Collins, Colo.

This gig started like any other, with a call from a nice young man. “Our harpist canceled at the last moment. Could you play with the violinist I’ve hired? My Norwegian bride wants a harp!” I agreed.

I live in Colorado, so mountain venues are not an unusual wedding request, particularly in the summer when the wildflowers abound and the mountains are verdant with foliage. This wedding, however, was not only in the mountains, but also near a mountain top.

I arrived at the lodge, a log cabin structure on a mountainside scrubbed of vegetation by a recent flood and landslide. It was in shambles. The only road there was unpaved and deeply rutted from the rains and traffic. I pulled up next to an open, horse-drawn wagon. “Where’s the wedding?” I asked. “Oh, it’s up the hill. That’s what we’re here for, to take the guests up there!”

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