The piano tuner asks, "Do you want absolute pitch? That'll cost you more."
The reason I think this is important is we're training our children's ears, not just their fingers. It struck in me a chord (if you will) of deep gratitude for the piano I was raised with. A beautiful specimen. My companion for many evenings.
My piano teacher would quiz me, and she told me often that I had perfect pitch. I'm sure I'd have to practice up to get the answers right again, and I'm confident that's possible, for me, with practice. The tuner says 1 in 10,000 people have perfect pitch recognition, and it's innate. So, I feel special. I know it has a lot to do with hearing the right notes from birth, though, and with practice.
So, we'll pay the extra $90 for a "second sweep" to bring our upright, which we got for free, into A440. This is in keeping with my goal of doing fewer things well; not spreading ourselves thin, but approaching our tasks with care and reverence for classical standards.
As the musicians reading understand, one's acoustic instrument is one's companion and teacher, and is one of those things, also, that never really BELONGS to you, but is of this world and passes through your realm to confer its gifts, then moves on to pair with a new soul, carrying your essence in its aging body.
I'm so darn sentimental. I always get philosophical when our piano gets tuned! I don't know what that's about. To see it open is exciting--I wish our girls were here to see. It's a spectacle! It's a delicious day when the piano gets tuned.
With gratitude to Jason Kronick, the best piano tuner in the region.