Diary Of A Busker Day 234

Diary Of A Busker Day 234 Wednesday May 16th 2012 Winchester High Street 1. Opposite Vodafone, Time: 12:08-2:08pm, 2. Opposite O2, Time: 3:05-5:14pm
After my first session I take almost an hour’s break; quite a long time for me, but it’s a nice day and I want to do at least another hour. As it goes, I’ve done alright for two hours. I count just under £30; £5 above the usual hourly rate. At the cathedral grounds, I watch Alan drag his McDonalds rubbish cart around. A bit later, I take a photo for my album of my view – the cathedral with Alan, a little figure near the centre – resplendent in the omnipresent and dreaded HIGH-VIS jacket, not optional these days, if your work entails being outdoors and/or you drive or are in control of: a bus, rubbish cart or submarine. He’s picking up garbage with his litter picker-upper – the stick with the claw thing at the end. So, Alan’s picking up crisp packets and about 20 feet to my right, two young women are picking up daisies, making chains and then putting them around their necks. When they see me observing, they look embarrassed – why? Maybe they think I think they’re a bit old for all that?
Heading back, I chat to Chris, a young, fair-bearded, partly-dreadlocked Greenpeace charity worker, trying to get some direct debits on the High Street. He says he used to be a busker in Montreal, getting to his pitch at 4 am. ‘It can be the best and the worst job in the world,’ he says, ‘you can be good and make no money, then you can be crap and make shit loads! I’ve met friends, lovers, ex-wife…’
After the last set, which doubled in length, I buy a Big Issue from Simon, up the road outside Barclays Bank. ‘Hey, did you ‘ear what ‘appened to me?’ he says. ‘No.’ Apparently, he was down by the river at the bottom of the High Street and collapsed and was unconscious for a few minutes ‘…this old lady found me and called the ambulance and do you know how long it took, from when she made the call? (he doesn’t give me time to answer) Fifty-four minutes. Yeah, FIFTY-FOUR FUCKING MINUTES! I woke up, they’d put one of those things ’round my arm, they pump up, what are they?’ ‘To take your blood pressure, I think.’ ‘Yeah – I thought “what the fuck, what’s goin’ on here?!” ‘So, what was it? Why did you pass out?’ ‘They said me blood sugar was low, said I should get soming to eat. But, you know, I’m forty-three, never ‘ad anything like that ‘appen, ever.’
Earnings: £54.09

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