I made an off-hand remark on Twitter months ago that I wanted to cover "You’re the Biggest Part of Me" by Ambrosia with an ukulele. I was nowhere in the market for an ukulele, but that remark garnered some indirect encouragement.

A friend of mine pointed out that the highest four strings on a guitar are also the strings of an ukulele. If you know how to play one, you can play the other. Other people mentioned where I could find cheap ones.

So I would casually look up ukulele prices. Over at Guitar Center, the higher-end instruments topped out at $200. A child’s instrument started at $40.

Anytime I would mention ukuleles on Twitter or Facebook, the same indirect encouragement got reinforced. In short, people wanted to hear me cover Ambrosia with an ukulele.

One day when I was shopping with my mom, we passed a display case of ukuleles. I mentioned my off-hand remark, and she said Dad had bought an expensive ukulele a few years back. He wanted to learn how to play and even took two lessons, but my sister in Chicago had surgery. So my parents flew there to be with her. Dad didn’t take it up again.

It was the last day he was communicative, and I asked him whether I could take his ukulele back with me to Austin. He indicated yes.

On the day of my departure, I went to the UPS Store to have it shipped. It arrived today.

Now I just have to learn how to play it. That Ambrosia cover, though, won’t be coming any time soon.