Here's my new banjo. It's a basic, starter model, nothing fancy. It got here last Wednesday, but my first lesson wasn't until last night. I love the teacher, she's so enthusiastic. If you look at the picture, you'll see in the middle of the round white part (the head) there's a little piece of wood. That's called the bridge. Well, they don't ship the instrument with the bridge in place, because it props up the strings, and I guess the strings would be too taught. I learned this the hard way, by taking the banjo to my first lesson without the bridge installed. I get there, and she looks and says, "where the bridge?". Um, what's a bridge?
So while she was still rolling around on the floor laughing (I was too, it was so silly), I dashed home and got the bridge, which had come with a couple of little tools to maintain the banjo. Sheesh. I had a good laugh at my own expense. I think that pretty well established just how much of a newbie I am and how basic things need to be to start. She was very generous and gave me a full 30 minute lesson after I returned with the bridge, and I've been practicing the two parts to my 4/4 rolls.
I'm glad I did this!
I almost forgot. You can see that I have a nice case for my new banjo. I have former flame CB to thank for the "you need a case for your devices" mindset. There was a time when I'd just buy a thing, and then get bummed out when it got dinged, scratched or broken. Thinking that I had paid enough already, thank you. No more. Now I order the case alongside the thing, and don't worry about it. In fact, I just sort of factor it into the price of the thing.