As a piper, I have played the bagpipes at many different occasions, but the strangest thing of all happened to me recently when I was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man.
This man had no family or friends, and so the service was to be at a pauper’s cemetery in the Kentucky back country.
As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost and, being a typical man, I didn’t stop for directions.
I finally arrived an hour late and saw that the funeral director had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight.
The only people around were the grave diggers and they were sitting eating their lunch.
I felt really bad, and apologized to the men for being late.
I then went to the side of the grave and looked down, and the vault lid was already in place.
I didn’t know what else to do, so I picked up my bagpipes and I started to play.
As I started playing a haunting melody on the pipes, the workers all put down their lunches and began to gather around.
I played out my heart and soul for this man with no family and friends.
In fact I played like I have never played before for this homeless man.
And as I played “Amazing Grace”, the workers began to weep.
They wept, I wept, we all wept together.
When I finished I packed up my bagpipes and started to head for my car.
Though my head hung low, my heart was full.
As I opened the door to my car, I heard one of the workers say, “I never seen nothin’ like that before and I’ve been putting in septic tanks for twenty years.”
Apparently I’m still lost…
Image used under a Collective Commons License from https://pixabay.com/photos/bagpipes-bagpiper-music-kilt-3966514/