Friday August 26th 2016
We left Sutton for Blackfriars at 1pm. Kaja, Emil and their friends would arrive later. We got there at 3pm and there was a saw player playing. Thoth spoke to him. He’d play for another hour and a half, so we could begin at 4:30pm. Kaja and Emil arrived with their friends. We waited and I listened to my Ipod so I didn’t have to hear the saw. It gets old after a minute or two. “Saw is a great walk-by act. People are intrigued by the sound at first, but it diminishes in interest after a few minutes. What we do is instantly curious and intriguing at first, too, but it gets better the longer people listen.” Thoth said. A very loud pile driver started banging away several times while we played. Unbelievable!
Turns out, the saw player was Polish. Kaja and Emil talked to him once he finished and we set up. We played for an hour and a half and Kaja and friends sat and watched. The pile driver started up for 10 minutes during our third song. Annoying. We got through it, but stopped and waited for it to stop. Thoth did an improvisation to it and then went into stillness while I sat and waited. Kaja and friends clapped for the “Gypsy Dance” and “Interlude” and two girls started dancing. People love us. When we finished, our intake was pretty disappointing, but I counted my blessings. It’s still not the best spot for us. We have to find a spot where people’s generosity somewhat matches what we’re giving. Kaja was very moved with today’s prayformance.
We walked with everyone over the bridge to a bar in a train station. We were both feeling very happy, even though we didn’t do well financially. We’re doing the best we can. Eating when we haven’t eaten since last night is so amazing. We took the tube back to Victoria station and took the train home. Long day. I want us to be able to come to London next year and be doing well enough to stay here for a few months. It took years for the space in Lisbon to work out for us. It might take that long here, too to find the right space. I’m grateful for what we have, of course.
Saturday September 19th 2015
This morning was difficult. Our hosts 5 year old child is extremely difficult and loud. It’s hard to focus.
I spent the usual 2 hours on makeup and we took the 1 hour ride to the park. Sadly, the big chess game was going on around the Bethesda Terrace. Lots of young kids were playing and being noisy in the tunnel. Miriam was singing and it seemed the Boyd kids had left earlier, or didn’t even come to sing. I could barely hear Miriam it was so loud. We sat down and tried to decide if we should stay and try to sing, or go home. That’s when Dan Rubin showed up! He usually doesn’t come on the weekends. I asked him if we should stay and Dan said no, so we didn’t.
Dan and us walked into the Ramble and took pictures at a little waterfall.
Thoth took out his violin and sang while Dan took pictures of me, then Dan took some shots of him. Thoth then came over to me and I sang with him. A bunch of people stopped and watched us. Thoth then went up on the rocks and I took out my violin and played with him. It was interesting to play in such an unusual environment. We improvised everything and it showed me how much I’ve improved since 2009. We had a big crowd watching us. We should have put out our case. People climbed down from other areas and sat on the rocks watching us. Everyone lucky enough to see us today have a special memory they’ll carry with them forever. I wonder if they know how privileged they were to see us in such an environment for free. We took a picture with Maldrok in the etchings at the entrance of the Museum of Natural History. We hopped on the C train at 81st Street. We got home an hour earlier than we usually would. ALL PHOTOS BY DAN RUBIN.
Sunday July 19th 2015
It was so hot today! Thoth made us delicious salads with tuna fish. It was yummy. He’s such a sweet husband. We keep each other safe, nourish each other and love each other for all the rest of our lives.
I worked really hard on my makeup. The residue of yesterday’s beautiful, successful prayformance was still with me. I was inspired. It’s such a journey doing my makeup. I start with a clown white base, then I add eye shadow colors with my fingers and brushes, then I add white lines, then jewels on top to finish it out. It’s all spontaneous and I go with my feelings and what inspires me. I never have any idea how it’s going to look like when I finish. I’m getting better and better every day. Rua Garrett was dead when we got to our spot. There weren’t any cars parked on the street or many people walking around, which is bad for us. When there are parked cars, people can’t watch us from the street, therefore they can’t stand as far away, which helps with people’s generosity.
The night was pretty dead as well. People stood in the street of course to watch us, which never helps us. The farther away they are, the less supportive they are. The closer they are, the more committed they are, thus more generous and complimentary. We need that.
It got better as the night went on. It has nothing to do with us. It’s just how the day goes. Two sets of people who watched us last night came again and sat down in the space with us. That always helps us, commitment from the audience. People who have specifically come to see us. We’re grateful. Thank you.
Of course we were a bit disappointed how the night went. We put a lot of effort into it and didn’t get a lot back. Sure, not many other acoustic musician buskers enjoy the kind of crowds we get, but everything is relative. We’re used to big, focused crowds yelling “bravo” and when we have a crowd that isn’t like that, it’s a bummer, especially when we did last night. I wish we could have crowds every day that are focused and supportive and cheering of us. It’s not a lot to ask. Sundays are always kind of slow and lonely and drab. Oh well. I was grateful to the people who had helped us out tonight. T We usually have a nice dinner on Sundays after a long week of playing. Tonight we went to Sea Me, and it definitely cheered us up. Our waitress served us last time and was happy to see us again. She saw us performing a while ago and loved it. People stare at us there, and I’m sure some of them have seen us perform, too. My dinner.
Thoth’s dinner. Goodnight. xo