Diary Of A Busker Day 485 Monday December 30th 2013 Winchester (Opposite Bellis, Time: 4:10-5:37pm).
A late start as I was sorting out my new 12-string travel guitar which arrived just after lunch, all the way from Erlanger, Kentucky. A cold day – especially at the late hour – but thankfully no wind. If there had been, it would have been unbearable. Lots of people in town, although none of the regulars apart from one I hadn’t seen in ages, namely ex-cruise musician Mick. He stood near me – back a couple of paces – while I finished off (literally) Joy Of Man’s Desiring, just before I packed in.
He said he hadn’t seen me in ages. In fact he said the same thing I was thinking about HIM – ‘I was beginning to think you’d popped your clogs’ (I must find out the origin of that), so I said ‘That’s what I thought had happened to YOU’. When I said I’d taken three weeks off due to my hand, he said ‘You know what you need? Chilli. Rub some chilli on it’. I said ‘What?’ He says ‘Yeah, chilli. You know that stuff – deep heat? ‘That’s all it is – chilli. Look on the label: Cajuput. That’s chilli’. Interesting. Mick notices the moustache so I say ‘Yeah, now we’re both mustachioed gents’. He says he’s had his for 50 years! If I have mine that long (age-wise, not literally), I’ll be 101. No chance. I’m getting quite attached (literally) to it, though.
Mick wishes me a happy new year and I say I’ll probably be out here, this time tomorrow. I have to say, it was a relief to see him as he’s one of the few survivors from the original regulars I made the acquaintance of, way back in 2010. So many are gone – died, or never seen again for whatever reason: Colin – who loved The Third Man, Alfie the pianist, Harry The Dutchman, Walter, Ralph, Marie-Therese – who loved La Vie En Rose, Carol from The North – what’s happened to her? …and of course Henry Gray – it would have been his 102nd today. In remembrance, I tune up for his favourite – Over The Rainbow, the last song.