Recently I started busking regularly, and after some ups and downs I'm in the middle of a time when every day is a story in itself - a week's worth of interesting events massed together in a morning's work on the street.
Today there was the man trying to sell pyramid schemes, who clapped loudly and alone for about a minute after all my pieces, then the lady with the most beautiful smile of all - reminiscent of someone I loved and lost - came with her son and I played her favourite tune (Ricuerdos del Alhambra) then his (twinkle, twinkle little star) and how she beamed...It felt like the high point of my life. At some stage I played Radiohead's Creep and entirely lost myself in it. After that a man who looked a little like a 40-something rocker walked towards me looking fixedly - I wondered if there was half a chance he was going to throw a punch for some reason - but smiling, who said "Absoutely beautiful! That's years of practice"...and walked off again.
Then my friend Tim, who plays lazy jazz improvisations of hymns and songs on the piano, saying he'd had his best morning ever - pondering whether it was because he'd prayed that morning. The seeds from the tree coming down and pelting me and my guitar case as I played Bach - the German tourist who appreciated same (the Bach not the tree)
The whole month of playing has been full of little stories - a woman who told me In My Life was her wedding song when I played it. Girls probably too young for me leaving notes and phone numbers, waving at me the next day when they see me. My family doesn't make me smile, but these fleeting friends who will many of them go back to China, Korea, Spain, France and Italy next week, these are the ones I think about with a happy smile - for our shared moments.
(post was actually started and mostly written on the 19th July)