Self-preservation brought me back to my senses. I might be thinking too much about the interpretation breakthrough. Perhaps it had just happened. Whatever was going on, once I could get back to practising there would be so many new ideas I could explore.
In the meantime, I would be a model patient and would rest.
On Battersea Bridge I remembered my white gloves and pulled them out of my bag.
Such an undemanding movement, but my arm jagged with pain.
In the river below, a boat chugged towards the bridge, passed underneath and went into the distance.
It took that long before I could consider moving again. Then I could only do it if I cradled one hand in the other, a sling to protect it while I walked.
I’d overdone the playing, that was all. I hadn’t touched a piano for nearly six weeks and then attacked a concert Bosendorfer. The Bosendorfer wasn’t an easy instrument, it had a stiff concert action. To go straight in and play a full piece was like an out-of-shape athlete going for a sprint without even a warm-up. Of course I should expect it to hurt. Perhaps it was a tad foolish but after more rest I should be fine. Dr Golding always said there was nothing wrong with me.
It was all worth it when I thought about Leo Korda’s words after I finished for the first time. My audience’s faces. My breakthrough; my new channel to true interpretation.
There was the time before Leo Korda; five dark weeks of running each day like a tap. Now there was hope. Soon I would be better – and my playing would rise to a new level.
This was the start of my real recovery. I’d wear those white gloves respectfully and gratefully. Tomorrow I should be able to get them on. I might even give the yoga another try.
An hour and a half after I left Kensington, I brought my key up to my front door and slid it into the lock.
The pain shot me. It held me staring at the tiles of the porch for several minutes.
Carefully, with my other hand, I tried again. The key and