The Rewards of Playing Music in the Hospital.
One of my early experiences as a visiting musician took place in the Intensive Care Unit of a hospital. I was asked to play my mountain dulcimer for an elderly man. As I entered the man's room, the nurse told me, "Oh, he can't talk, but he can hear." I greeted the gentleman and asked if I could play music for him. He just looked at me. Acting on the nurse's advice, I told him I had a few songs for him and proceeded to play - and sing- "You are My Sunshine." His face was expressionless, but his eyes never left my face. I played a few more songs. And when it was time for me to leave, I thanked him for allowing me to play for him. At that point, still with an expressionless face, the patient took his hands out from under the covers and made a clapping motion. It was a beautiful moment for both of us. I was hooked! I knew I would continue to find ways to share my music with others.