I Rang the Wrong Bell


It was Christmas Eve. I was in the handbell choir joining others ringing well-known Christmas carols.

Each of us had two or three bells to play and music in front of us. I had even circled the notes corresponding to the bells assigned to me. We had rehearsed each piece several times, as well. I should have been well prepared.

As I said, it was Christmas Eve and the church was packed. And we were playing very familiar pieces, which meant everyone knew the melodies.

Right in the middle of Silent Night, I played the wrong bells. I could tell immediately. So could everyone else. And my face showed it, turning red, with a big ooops plastered all over it.

But, the others just kept playing and the director kept us in time with each other. I changed out the wrong bell with the right one and we finished our part in the service.

There were a few smiles from friends afterwards. I still remember this decades later. I don’t think anyone else does. What I remember most is how we kept playing through the mistake.

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38Ann Adams Shanley, Dorothy Caldwell and 36 others


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