These folks in West Hartford have a small farmers’ market in Bishop’s Square, next to a Starbucks on Saturday mornings. I’ve played there once and they asked me back again for one more in October. Quite a difference from the spacious green the day before. Now a patch of macadam in a parking lot. Yet, still some good energy from folks trying to establish this kind of community of alternative food.
The rain brought it a change of weather so it was cold, and I was in the shade. But I had no wind. The folks across the way had sun, but lots of wind. It was a toss up.
Since there were few shoppers, I got to react more with the vendors, most of whom liked what I did last time. I told one vendor today that we are really all artisans and birds of a feather. And, I realize that these folks also get to see me perform for two to three hours straight. They pick up on my craft as I also appreciate theirs.
There are always interesting moments of connection. One happened before I even started. I was stopped by an elderly lady when she saw me put my guitar and chair in place when I first arrived. She immediately offered her card: Barbara… piano, performer, teacher…. She asked my name, and when I told her, she said that rang no bells. I told her I wasn’t famous.
I set up while she watched. She talked about teaching piano in colleges, schools and with private lessons, and mentioned touring the world. I continued setting up my stuff, tuning my instruments. She said that she was intrigued and I figured I had one song so I cranked up Don’t Call Me Early. I was in tune, and, surprisingly, warmed up from Friday’s gigs, nailed it. Barbara thanked me and acknowledged my musicianship and I thanked her for connecting with me. It’s often the case I meet some curious fellow musicians at these gigs.
It was cold and windy today, I could feel the cold in my flatpick fingers. Usually it’s my toes or chord fingers. I wrapped it up after two hours. I actually wasn’t sure if I was due for three hours, but took advantage of the good will and cold conditions to head out on the long 124 hour trip back to Bethlehem.
Again, a small group of folk trying to establish a beach head in their own community, based on good food, some good music and good people.
One energetic lady farmer thanked me with an open plastic bag for me to fill from her wares. Purple potatoes, onion, peppers. Thanks.