Diary Of A Busker Day 684 Saturday January 24th 2015 Winchester (1. Opposite Vodafone, Time: 3:17-3:37pm, 2. Opposite Oxfam, Time: 3:43-5:15pm).
The amplified rockabilly trio – I forgot the name – were set up at The Butter Cross, and although I couldn’t really hear them at Pavilion on the other side of the alleyway, I carried on down to Vodafone. There was the paintball kiosk opposite, and a couple of feet from where I was setting up, a girl, or woman rather – early 20’s – holding an orange bucket, bigger than mine and not a pumpkin one, collecting for something, which going by what was on her t-shirt, was called something or other – her hood was covering up the first word – Sense Foundation. Under two hand prints it said ‘Leave your hand print on the world’.
Now, I thought she’d turn around at some point during my setting up, see me setting up and move away a bit, but she didn’t. In fact, she never even turned around until I was about to start up, then she said ‘Excuse me sir, but you’re not supposed to set up, collecting, less than twenty feet from someone else’. (The bloody cheek!) So I said ‘Who said that?’ ‘It’s a rule from the council’. ‘Well I’ve never heard of that before (true)…well, I’m all set up, I can’t go anywhere (I could have) – this is where I usually set up. Surely you can go…over there (pointing over the road)’. ‘Well, YOU can (bloody cheek!), I’ve been here all day’, she said, to which I, starting to feel my blood boil, replied ‘Well, it’s about time you went somewhere else’.
And that was that. She resumed her natural position – with her back to me, I started Albatross, did a few more and she never turned again, for fifteen minutes, holding her bucket and me with mine on the ground three feet away. Then she was joined by another person of the same sex and age and she ignored me, too. Five minutes later, they left. But not before I got my camera from the bucket and took a photo: my view, with them two feet in front of me.
One of the paintball blokes who’d witnessed our disagreement was laughing. He was looking at me so I smiled as I think we had an understanding. I think he thought the girl was a bit odd. At one point, during the stand-off, he made an attempt to come to my aid, by indicating to the girl an outstretched arm, that she could go over and stand near him. But she’d obviously made up her mind: she was not going to move…or be moved! Anyway, if they hadn’t have left, I would have gone myself, as I’d done twenty minutes and got nothing. Loads of peopleoids about, of course.
So I bombed down the road and started up at Oxfam. Not long after that, the stroke lady, who I hadn’t seen in awhile, appeared in her wheelchair, pushed by her daughter or daughter-in-law. I carried on with Albatross, then said ‘Now I know what YOU like’ and went into Chinatown, My Chinatown, and, of course, there she was, smiling and trying to sing along. The daughter made to get some money out but I said not to.
Well, Chinatown’s now Song Of The Day because during it a foreign woman asked to buy a CD. I motioned to the stroke lady and said ‘OK, just a minute’. She understood and I carried on and finished the song. Then I showed her the old CD, that is, the one with Kirstin White’s painting of me on the cover. But I also showed her the new one which hasn’t got a cover yet. Doll’s doing one soon.
Anyway, this lady wanted both CDs! So I thought £8 each…£16. She gave me a £20 note and she got four pound coins back, from the bucket. It was worth coming into town just for that. I couldn’t believe it. After that, an Indian family donated and filmed my hands close up as I did The Third Man. After, I wrote The Third Man on the back of a card and gave it to him, in case he puts it on youtube.
I held out for an hour and a half before the cold got too much. In fact, it was the feet more than anything else. Just before I packed up a man asked for While My Guitar Gently Weeps – the one the god bloke usually asks for. So I did that, complete with mistakes. Before I did it, he mentioned something he thought I’d like: Good Dog, Happy Man by someone whose name he couldn’t remember. I said I’d look it up and I did and it’s a bit boring, I have to say.
Earnings: £33.45p (Including 2 CDs)