Diary Of A Busker Day 2206 Friday August 4th 2023 The Buttercross, Winchester High Street.
A woman around 70 comes up and is interested in my books. She buys volume 1 and then we have a little chat.
“My husband liked your playing very much but he was a shy man and wouldn’t dream of coming up to you to tell you. In fact, it took me awhile…I found it very difficult to listen to you, because of my husband. Please don’t take that the wrong way…you know what I mean, don’t you?” I was quite moved by this – I said I understood. That’s the weird thing – you just don’t know what people are thinking. Some people obviously like the playing but there’s no way they’re going to come up and tell me and I suppose it’s the same with most of the ones who don’t like me, which suits me fine, actually!
During La Vie En Rose, a man breaks free from the tourist group he’s in, to come up to me and sing along. At the end, he says, or rather confesses, “I am Italian, all Italians are like this!” I try and think of something else he might know – I’m clearly in a good mood or else I wouldn’t entertain this sort of crowd participation – and I decide to do the old Elvis number, and yes, he certainly knows it, performing with gusto. But that’s enough for today, thank you Mario Lanza and bon voyage.
Halfway though the second set – a total of four hours today – I have to change the batteries in the amp. A few minutes later, a man comes up and hands me two packets of Everyready AA batteries, saying “These any good?” “Thank you…don’t you need them?” I say. “No, I just bought them for you.” Wow, what a nice and generous chap, and then I remember, he was sitting on the steps of the Buttercross, right behind me, and must have seen me fiddling around changing the batteries!
Before I pack up, Sally comes by with a joke – “Did you hear about the two blood cells who fell in love? Sadly their love was in vein.”