Diary Of A Busker Day 700 Tuesday March 3rd 2015 Winchester (Opposite Oxfam, Time: 3:45-5:15pm).
The 700th Day. How many more of these before I chuck in the towel?! Another sunny but cold day: 8 degrees. I cycled around a bit before deciding Oxfam was the least windy spot. But before I decided, Otto passed me in The Square and totally blanked me. I even said ‘Hello Otto’ – nothing, which was weird as he didn’t look out of it. Maybe he only sees me when he’s out of it!
Someone else who ignored me – in fact, he’s done it for months now…I wonder why – is Eddie, the old guy who used to be a Southampton cabbie in the ’70s. He walked by during my set and never even looks at me now. Maybe he’s depressed, maybe his wife died, who knows.
During the Gymnopedie, a man about 65 stood by and said ‘You’ll put everyone to sleep’. I said ‘Thank you’, thinking it was a compliment but I’m not sure, now. In fact, he said something else after but I couldn’t make it out and I wasn’t going to stop playing. He eventually wandered off but I think he wanted to start a conversation.
I started to get cold quite quickly as the wind picked up a bit…and there seemed to be a bus going by every five minutes, which of course started to get on my nerves…and there was alot of rubbish blowing around me, like cigarette packet wrappers, empty sugar sachets from the tables across the road. It was all starting to get a bit much, not to mention a pain in the joint on the inside of the right arm. I’ve had it now and again for a few months but it seems to be almost all the time now, even when I’m not playing, sitting at home. In fact, it’s hurting now while I’m writing this. Probably because the arm is always bent the same amount, about 45 degrees, like a repetitive strain thing. I’m a bit concerned about it.
Anyway, all this was bothering me and just then, at precisely 4:15, right after Je Te Veux, a woman crosses the road and gives me a £10 note, saying ‘That was lovely to hear as I was walking up the street’. Wow. And it was just what I needed. Song Of The Day – Je Te Veux!
A few minutes after, that really thin, wasted-looking Drongo (they all look wasted, though) comes by and says ‘A quid if you can play The Wind Cries Mary. I know you can ’cause I’ve heard you play it’. Well, the poor wasted Drongo is mistaken as I’ve never played The Wind Cries Mary. The poor chap’s confused. What he’s heard me play is Purple Haze, from the same album as The Wind Cries Mary. So I say ‘No, I’ve never played that one but…’, and go into ‘Haze’ – he loved it. And when I get to the ”scuse me while I kiss the sky’ bit, he goes ”scuse me while I kiss the sky – not KISS THIS GUY!’, and oh, how we both laughed.
After that distraction, I started to get really cold, painfully cold in the fingers of both hands. So that was it, an hour and a half straight through. Long enough when it’s 8 degrees with a wind blowin’ up…and there’s a pain in the arm that’s getting worse. But that £10 from the kind lady…just that one person completely transformed the outcome of this, the 700th day. One person, for this is all it takes.