Playing the violin is fraught with difficulties, but apart from that, there is the tricky matter of transporting stringed instruments.
It is a problem with several facets, that of carrying stringed instruments around. One must consider the ever-growing assortment of violin cases (writes the violinist) and wonder whether extra protection is worth the additional weight — although, nowadays, it has become less necessary to choose between safety and added pounds due to the development of miraculous hi-tech materials. Such strides have been made that even the notion of combined cases with rain covers (with which Amazon.com is positively inundated) can begin to seem like an accoutrement from a vaguely distant era.
Have violin (or other stringed instruments); will travel
Thinking recently about another aspect of moving around with a violin in tow — the ever-troubling prospect of airplane travel — led me to a curious discussion on violinist.com, where this link was provided; Jascha Heifetz apparently owned and used a walking stick violin, judging from this wonderful photograph (and I came across photos of Fritz Kreisler with one as well). Such a peculiar specimen from the age-old family of stringed instruments was referred to due to its not being regarded as cabin baggage on a plane — in its walking stick or cane mode, it is considered to be a support device and thus eliminates at least one complication (while perhaps creating another, but that is a choice of the lesser evil again). Some searching revealed that there are exquisite examples of this item, of varying antiquity, that come up at auctions and belong to art collections both private and museum-owned. In addition, there are today highly-skilled instrument builders who have taken to custom-making these, even incorporating one or two practical improvements into the design. Here is a short clip of a vintage walking stick violin being opened and assembled for use in its musical capacity:
Silent violin has its charms
How infinitely more charming is such an item than a so-called silent violin (such as these on offer at amazon.com), although the latter does possess one kind of charm that is positively golden. This all leads me to believe that I may at last have found a way to unite the two activities I can never sufficiently undertake: walking and practicing.