Day 2395

Diary Of A Busker Day 2395 Wednesday June 26th 2024 The Buttercross Winchester.
The second hot day in a row; 25 degrees. There’s a girl singing at the top spot, Meeta at the crossroads but no flower seller opposite Marks & Sparks so I set up, in the shade, thankfully…and just after I start, there’s the distant sound of a military band which gradually gets louder. I put the guitar down, step out onto the pavement, look to the right and there they are, loads of different brass bands turning the corner onto Colebrook Street. Thank fuck they’re not coming this way. Anyway, I resume playing, make a fiver in ten minutes and I think it’s going well but then hardly any coinage for ages…and then the building work starts next door, inside the now defunct Debenhams and to add to that, after a bit longer, they’re dumping stuff in a skip somewhere so that’s the end of that. I’d managed an hour and decided to go home for some grub and come back later.
The Buttercross is now free and Mr. Lavelle is up the road, no doubt relieved that I’m back on the Gretsch today. Now, what about this for a blast from my past. During The Third Man two young blokes and a young woman stop to listen. When I finish, one of the blokes says he met me thirteen years ago.
‘Really?’ I say.
‘Yeah, I was eight and I was here with my dad and he filmed me playing AC/DC Back In Black on your guitar.’
‘You’re joking?!’ No he wasn’t, and he proved it – he’s got a video on his phone! And there he is, playing my old, long since retired Epiphone Casino and watching him, there’s me with dark hair! 
Then I suddenly think…thirteen years ago…that’s 2011 so that’s got to be in one of the diary books, especially if I let someone else play my guitar – I would have definitely written about that, so I ask him when the video was filmed and it’s July 15th. I get out the first volume but it only goes up to the middle of May – it’s got to be in volume 2…and there it is – Day 131 and he’s no less than Jimmy G, 21 now and with a moustache, to boot. In fact, his phone says Jimi, so I might have mis-spelled it in the book. 
Well, I have to insist on him buying the bloody book he’s in (I insisted on signing and dating it, of course) and I also have to insist he plays something for me, which he does and I have to say he’s come a long way. He plays Tommy Emmanuel’s Sanitarium Shuffle and it’s brilliant and I made sure I filmed him. 
He tells me he wants to make a go of it, being a musician but is finding it hard to get things started. All I can say is ‘Just as long as you like doing it – well, you have to LOVE doing it, then it’s easy. Just don’t do it for the money, I mean, don’t do it to make LOTS of money, forget about that.’
As they walk away down the Pentice, he says ‘See you in thirteen years!’ 
Not bloody likely.
About an hour after Jimmy/Jimi G and friends departed, there’s a crash behind me. It’s a drongo woman. She’s tried to steer a shopping trolley loaded with two huge cases around the bend and knocked my bike over. She was trying to control the trolley with one hand because she was holding a small bottle of vodka in the other. After a minute, she manages to put the bike back. I could have stopped playing and helped her but she seemed to be getting on with it OK so I left her to it. 

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