About 25 years ago I walked into a
antiques-shop where I seen a few
violins behind the window. The boss
from the businness noticed direct that
I not belonged to his regular clients.
I was aloud to look around and I was
amazed to find a violin in a trashcan!
I took it out. The neck was broken,
some pieces from the topdeck missed.
On request I was told that there was
a painting fallen on to it. My next
question was how much. The boss had
to think a while about it. The answer
was that after I had clean out his
garden I could have the violin plus
that he would give me 100 guilders.
I did it and it was a challence.
The garden was pritty big, 20 by 25
meter, and was not maintained for 10
years. There where branches and leafs,
dumped pieces antique old iron, bricks
and sidewalktiles and al minimal 2
meter high if it was not 3 meter. I
started at 9 hour at morning. Finished
at half past 9 in the evening. I showed
the result to the boss and it was ok.
I was requested to play for his clients
on a reception that evening. He offered
me the Glotz, a Mittenwalder-violin
from around 1700. Nice piece but in a
far from optimal state. After that we
where going to the office. I got the
pieces violin and the hundred guilders.
The next day I went to my violinbuilder
with the parts. On my question if it
could be repared he nodded yes. The
neck had a 'clean' straight break,
the cabin was well build and he had a
new neck better then the old one.
A week later I could retrieve her
again. The violin looked again like a
violin. With the strings I payed a
total of 180 guilders. Not much.
The violinbuilder told me that she was
a French Farmer-violin from about 1850.
By coincidence the top- and bottom-deck
was builded well and beautiful.
Something that was hearable. The broken
violin was rerised out of the ash.
I called my new violin Benjamin. Just
as a Stradivarius who also always is
given a name.