Day 2361

Diary Of A Busker Day 2361 Thursday May 2nd 2024 Winchester.
I’d been at the top spot for over an hour and had only two donations, totalling £2.10, when an American couple in their 70’s came by while I was playing Can’t Take My Eyes Off You and the man said, ‘that was our engagement song!’ and dropped a tenner in the case. ‘Well, I was in the right place at the right time, then. Thank you, you’ve made my day!’ I said. ‘Well, you’ve made ours, thank you!’ he says as they’re walking off.
What a relief after two hours of almost nothing…but wait, there’s something not right about the tenner, which I glanced at only fleetingly when it was dropped. It’s an old one, bigger than the new ones and made of paper. Bollocks. I know you can get old pounds coins changed at the bank but I’m pretty sure you can’t do that with any old notes. 
After two hours and ten minutes, I’ve had enough so I start packing up. As I’m getting up to put the guitar away, another old couple walk by and he stops and looks at my guitar. I say hello.
‘Hello’ he says back, ‘my friend had one of those.’
‘Did he?’
‘Yeah, Justin Hayward.’
‘Justin Hayward?’
‘Yeah, of The Moody Blues, you know them?’
‘Yeah, sure. Justin Hayward’s a friend of yours?’
‘Yeah…well, a very distant relative. We used to be in the same band together, you know, before he was in The Moody Blues.Have you played with anyone known?’
Anyway, enough about Justin Hayward’s distant relative, what about this old tenner? It’s worth a try, so I pack up and do the short walk up to the bank. Inside, the bloke behind the counter holds it up to the light – ‘I haven’t seen one of these for years…looks like it’s from the seventies.’ ‘I know, someone just gave it to me and I thought I’d come in, just in case.’
Well, blow me if he didn’t put the old tenner in the tray, get a new one out and hand it to me! So now I know, old notes ARE still exchangeable. What a fucking relief.
After that, I went down to the crossroads and upstairs to the toilets in the Pret place…and what a relief that was, as well, and not just because I was bursting, but because the bog in the house hasn’t flushed for the past two days so we have to put buckets of water down it. 
Back outside, Meeta is packing up and offers me the spot but I turn it down because it’s almost four o’clock and they put the Starbucks bins out at 4:30. I refuse to go back to The Buttercross so set up in between, in The Pentice, opposite The Body Shop. I shouldn’t have bothered. I got three quid for the hour. Good about the old tenner, though.

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