I had a leisurely Thursday morning with my usual YMCA workout, meditation along the river. I had time to do some grocery shopping and a stop out at Shirleen’s dahlia patch. The fall is my time to go out to her family’s farm and take in her fabulous dahlia’s: rows and rows of incredible flowers, in all sizes, colors and wonderful variations. It has been a way to leave my troubles behind and ‘inhale’ the beauty of her creations. 


We’ve become friends over the years, so its important to take time out to visit with her as well as take time to wander through the flowers and pick out a slew of brilliant blooms. She loaded me up with some tomatoes and a slice of warm blueberry pie from her oven. It was a good visit. 


I got back to 4th Street around noon, put my dahlias in some water and decided to head up to the Campus Farmers’ Market to get some vegetables and check in on the music. I got up there – no music – and I was approached by a vendor saying, “Have you checked your messages?” Nope. They had given me a call to fill in. I said, if I can play acoustically, I can start by 12:30. So I did. Nothing like a local gig. 


This gig I usually use my sound due to the situation, stuck in the middle of brick patio, under a tent. Folks don’t usually come into the center space, except to eat some food, so there’s little chance to interact. Absolutely no tips. 


This time I set up amongst the vendors and let the brick walls surrounding me carry the sound. As it turned out, I did well with tips in the ole mando case, more folks came up and sat down and I did a nice two hours of good stuff, playing for the air around me. 


Later in the gig, not many folks around except for one Lehigh coed sitting at a table nearby. I finished up on of my ‘rock and roll’ tunes with a cool pause before hitting the final chord. It was a delicious moment and I commented to the girl, ‘Now that was a rock and roll ending!” We both laughed and shared the moment. Sometimes these are the defining moments in a gig when I can connect with my audience, even if its only one person. 


It was great to have this gig fall in my lap after a wonderful and active morning, play for two hours, get a check in the mail in a couple of weeks and connect with new people, reconnect with some good friends and, importantly, my creative self. A good day out of the blue.