I have been in the Knoxville area for the past week, staying with my brother and his family, and it has been great! Last Friday, I went to Morristown to the Java Garden Cafe. When I was there 2 years ago, I was asked if I wanted to play there, instead, I played outside a music store. I went there and told April, the manager who I was and she remembered me. Ten minutes later, I was in their garden outside playing for the lunch crowd. Unfortunately, it was a little chilly and hardly anybody came outside to eat lunch. April’s husband, Brandon, had a coffee and listened for a while and he liked what I was doing. We had a chance to talk for a bit as he was the one out there for a while. I also talked to one of the cooks there (sorry, I can’t remember his name). I asked about a fellow who was there 2 years ago, and he told me he was in a terrible accident. His name is RT, and I remember he was very good to me last time I was there. This accident happened about a month ago, and he broke his back and a couple of ribs. The other two in the car were also hurt pretty badly. Fortunately, they all survived and on the road to recovery. I was very happy to hear that! I asked him if he would give RT my best.
I went back to Knoxville after that and played in Market Square and on Gay St. I found, as I did last time I was here, that it can be quite busy here with all the other performers. Also, it was “Movies in the Square” night, and they were showing “Iron Man”. I called it an early night since I would be there for the entire day on Saturday. On my ride home, I was looking at the Moon and she was beautiful! She inspired a new Haiku-
O, beautiful Moon/ The gloriousness of you/ Shall inspire men to….
Saturday, after making pancakes for breakfast, I went back to Market Square. It is Farmer’s Market there every Saturday morning, but it was also game day. Though there were a lot of people, comparatively, it was slower than usual. I started off with a 2 hour set and had a great time. Some of the farmer’s came over and we had some great conversations. When I was done, I walked around for a little while and found my friend Harley Chapeau doing his magic show. It is always good to see him. Tennessee won the game and a couple of places emptied out, so I went in to one and took a break while I watched some college football. I went back out and played for another hour and saw it was slowing down a bit so I took off for a little while. Harley was going back to his car, so I walked with him and we caught up a bit and I was happy to hear he is doing really well. Another busker, Bill, who I had just met this week was down that way too. It was a pretty cool 10 minutes or so and then we split. I went back to the van and hung out there for a little while, while my phone charged.
Later on, I went back out for 2 more hours. Just after I got started, a man named Kevin came over to speak to me. He was a nice man and I saw he was in on a church gathering of some sort. I played “Amazing Grace” for him and he loved it. He then gave me a blessing and I thought was very sweet. He was telling me about the man across the way and asked if I would play that with him. The man’s name is Dave and he is a guitar player and singer, he reminded me of my friend Jefferson R from Savannah. I told him I don’t normally do that, but I did it anyway. Dave was just all to happy to play the tune with me and so we did. Kevin tipped us both. After we did that I went back to my spot. It was a pretty cool experience and I was happy to have met them. I see Dave there when I am here on the weekends, that was the first time I met him.
Later on that night, Julio, who works in the restaurant I play in front of, asked me if I wanted a coffee. It was getting really chilly now that the sun was down, so I told him, “That would be great, thank you!” Julio is a man who plays the harmonica. Two years ago when I was here, he came out and wanted to play a tune with me. We played “Blues in the Night” and had a fun time with that. I was grateful for the coffee when he got back! After playing for the 2 hours, I decided it was time to go. I had played a total of 5 hours for the day, my lips were chapped, it was getting colder and the Sox game 6 was on in a little while. On my way home, Saturday, I saw the Moon again. She looked more beautiful than the night before. I thought of changing the last line of my Haiku to-
“Shall inspire greatness”
From the time I woke up, to the time I went to bed, Saturday was just one of those really awesome days. The kind you wonder why it can’t always be like that.