Several times a year I travel overseas with my church to tell others about what Jesus has done in my life and invite others to have a personal relationship with Him. Every time I travel I bring along a set of bagpipes I have that I use as a spare in case I have a problem with my "good" pipes. The pipes I usually perform on are made out of wood while my back up pipes are made out of plastic. Because of this, it makes sence to take the plastic pipes when traveling overseas. Traveling can be hard on your bags.
I take my pipes with me to share the love of pipe music with others. Because of where I travel, many people have only heard of bagpipes, know what they are, and others have not heard of them at all. This was the case when I went to India.
I was several hours away from a large city in India. All I can say is, it took us 4 hours to travel to the village on less than ideal roads. We arrived at the house where I stayed for the week and got setteled in. After two days of visiting and sharing with people, I decided to pull out the bagpipes. I blew them up, played a tune, and put them up.
Before our evening program started, I decided to take out the bagpipes and play a few tunes for the people. I cranked them up and went for it.
After a couple of tunes I noticed I was almost hyperventilating. I was stuggling to keep air in my bagpipes. This was not cool! I have had problems with the bag on my pipes several times and knew that I had a leak in the bag. I played a few more minutes and put the instrument up. Our program continued, ended, and then we went home for the night.
The next day , after lunch, I took out the bagpipes to see what I could do about the bag. I plugged up the drones and chanter stocks and then filled the bag with air. WOW! It was as if I ran my bag into a cactus bush. All along the seam the bag was leaking air. I could feel the air coming out. I was able to deflate the bag within a matter of seconds.
Ok. I have had this issue before. Not a big surprise, just bad timing. I pulled out my roll of duct tape and started taping the seam up. After running tape down the seam of the bag, I blew it up to see if it would hold air. Partial success!!!! This is great! I can deal with a little air leak, but at least I can play my bagpipes for the people.
While I was in the room and playing my bagpipes to check them out, a young boy came to me and wanted me to play them outside. I grabbed the pipes and headed outside and started playing. As it usually happens, a small crowd gathered to listen. I could tell they were loving the sound of the pipes.
Because of the heat, I was not able to play very long. My shirt was drenched with sweat by the end of the 5 minutes I played. I could not go on for fear of heat exhaustion. They loved it! The smiles were huge and I was hot! This was fun. I put the bagpies up and took some photos with the people.
That evening at one our group gatherings I pulled out the bagpipes to play a couple of tunes for the people. I noticed that I was having a very hard time keeping the bag inflated. Oh well, the duct tape was not enough. I put the pipes up after a couple of tunes so we could start our evening program. This evening was great but I was bumbed because I still had a leak in my bag. While the duct tape did help, there were other holes that I discovered when I got home.
On my last day in India, I played one verse of "Amazing Grace" before our program and then put them away until I got home.
Here are some photos from my trip:
Once home, I replaced the bag!