One Man and His Horn: Charlotte

I didn’t know what to expect when I got to Charlotte. I stayed in the uptown area and it is wonderful there.  There is always something to do.  I pulled into Charlotte around 2:30 am and it was still hoppin’.  Thought about taking Gilda and playing right when I got there, but I needed to get some sleep, it was a long day.

I went to a coffee shop early, and on the way back, there was some excitement in one of the buildings.  The fire dept was there and it turns out there was a small fire in the basement.  I don’t know what building it was, but they closed it for the rest of the day.

When my brother-in-law and I were making the itinerary, we saw it was going to be Gay Pride Week in Charlotte, ending on Sunday.  So, I could only imagine Saturday night was going to be great.  When I went out in the afternoon, it was very windy.  I found a good spot and went to work.  The wind kept blowing  by tip box over, even with my water bottle to weigh it down!  I was out there for about 40 minutes when I was asked to move.  Turns out I was on bank property, I just had to move 6 feet over and I would have been fine.  I left anyway.  I was having some kind of problem, I couldn’t stop squeaking on the higher register. So I told him he was doing me a favor.  Eventhough, I only had to move 6 feet, I was just as happy to go back and figure it out.  I have a chip in my mouthpiece, it has been there for a while, so I don’t why that was a problem. I changed mouthpieces.

During this break time, I went up to the festival and got some lunch.  and looked around and continued to walk around town.  Something I want to say though-

There were a lot of people celebrating at this festival.  They blocked off two blocks of the street and everyone was having a great time.  Unfortunately, (I don’t know how to say this any other way)  Christians, who make Christians look bad, were out there on a megaphone, preaching the gospel.  They were calling them sinners and deviants, but they seemed unphased by all of this.  Security was really high so there weren’t any incidents, but I just find this sort of thing unacceptable.  How I feel about religion, or sexual preference or anything else is irrelevant.  I guess my point is, here is a group of people just celebrating who they are.  Instead of raining on their parade, just go celebrate who you are.

I got back to playing around 5:00. It was in a different spot, but it was a great spot.  I was 3 blocks up the street from the festival.  I got started and I hadn’t used this mouthpiece in a while, it took me a little while to get use to it.  I love my Jody Jazz but had to go with my Meyer. It took me about 15 minutes, so when I started, I wasn’t exactly “on”.  After that though, I was!  I played for over 2 hours and wanted to take a break.  Someone had given me a ticket for a beer at the festival, but I had to be there by 8.  Turns out, it was actually 7:30 and I got there at 7:34, oh well.  What was really cool though,  I ran into a couple I met when they on vacation in Savannah, Laurita and The Novie.  They live in Charlotte and it was good to to run into them.  We talked for a few minutes and caught up. Then it was time to go back to work.

On my way back to my spot, I asked an officer how late I was allowed to play. He found out and there was no time limit.  I only wanted to play until 10:00, just wanted to make sure.  I got back there before 8:00 and just wailed until 10:00.  All night I got to talk to a lot of people.  One man walked by me and said facetiously, “What do ya got there, a Bundy?’   I said back to him, “No, this is a 1928 Conn”  He stopped and turned around and came over to have a look.  I told him her name is Gilda.  He fist bumps me and says “Respect!”  I thought that was an interesting interaction.

It was 10:00 and I got going, the festival was over at 8:00 and it was slowing down.  I didn’t sleep well at all the night before, so I wanted to get some before I went to Greenville, SC.  I would say if you have never been to Charlotte, it is a great city, especially the uptown district.  I never saw downtown, so I can’t comment on that.

Thank you for reading and following along on my journey!

I almost forgot, I saw this sign and being from NH originally, I had to put this in to honor a fellow New Englander hero of the Revolutionary War–

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