Luthiers Are Nice People

November 22, 2021

One drawback to have an in-home trial of a cello, or in my case four cellos from three different violin shops or luthiers, is returning the cellos you don’t buy. Not only is there the drive, which in my case is at least 90 minutes, and, in one case, just over 2 hours, there is the conversation when you return the instrument.

I was apprehensive about handing in a cello and saying, “Thank you for loaning me this cello, but I’ve decided to buy one from someone else.” As it turns out, I needn’t have worried. Both of the luthiers I returned cellos to today were gracious, and even excited for me. Excited that I had found a good instrument. When I told them what I was getting they both replied that it was a very good cello, one that will challenge me and last me a long time.

Between politics and the pandemic, so many interactions with new people are tense—you don’t know where they stand on issues, and you don’t know what topical land mines are just beneath the surface. Being able to return two instruments today, and getting positive feedback, and congratulations, was very affirming.

All three of the luthiers I’ve met during my cello search are good people. That they are genuinely excited for me makes getting my new cello even better.

Author's profile picture

Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.