I need time to be idle in order to experience and romance my muse, Music, my lifelong partner. In some ways, when I think about the enforced thirty minute practice sessions and much-resented violin lessons during Friday recess which introduced us during my early childhood, our story feels a bit like the plot of a romantic comedy in which the protagonists express disdain for each other at first, only to confess an epic love for each other by the end of the story. Music kept me alive as a lonely and depressed pre-teen feeling his other-ness come into sharp relief through my middle and high school years. It has carried me to some of my most joyful experiences in life, facilitated almost all of my most-treasured friendships and romances, and comforted me during my darkest moments. Stealing moments to reconnect with it is the least it deserves, and reinvigorates me and my sense of wonder in untold ways. Every challenge and bump I encounter on this pathway of a musical life (even pandemics) are not catastrophic endings, they are simply a bit of a tease. It’s my muse playing coy, reminding me of the importance of our relationship, and simply inviting me to lean in harder, with more devotion, and to continue to fill my life with joyful kisses.Nicholas Phan, “Eternity”, 4 August 2020, http://nicholas-phan.com/grecchinois/2020/eternity, accessed 27 August 2020.