The bones were feeling tired after heading into work straight after the Bristol gig and then a long work meeting on Wednesday at which everyone seemed intent on telling each other their 'other car is a Jag'. Touring is knackering, but I had a long-standing invitation from Andy to visit David's and talk about the book and the CD, and he had performed the miracle of shifting the publisher to get the book into the shop and also persuading Damaged Goods to supply a clutch of Chefs CDs. Amazing! If anyone deserved a visit, he did.
En Route, I picked up leaflets to take and after a spell in a rainy traffic jam on the A1 (peace, tranquillity and the thump of the windscreen wipers for company), I unloaded my guitar and a box of CDs into the shop. How I wish we had a store like this in Barnet! There is a little cafe, shelves and shelves of books, and racks of CDs; it is a browsers paradise. I am so bored with living through a screen! I was able to choose some CDs for my nephew and niece the old-fashioned way, while eating freshly baked biscuits made by Andy's partner Jeanette.
As I was setting up Sandie (AKA Foolish Girl) arrived and so did Wilkie, plus a small and enthusiastic group of people who had braved the rain and hail. Wilkie bore the gift of a live Helen and the Horns recording from the Jazz Cafe (thank you! I have yet to listen to it: twelve thesis assignments to mark first but I am really looking forward to it).
The chairs were lined up and I was ready to go.
I hadn't meant to talk for so long but people asked really interesting questions, and there was only time for four or five songs which I almost bleated out (tired voice!). I am so glad I went: everyone was really friendly and we ended up chatting for quite a while. They are fans of Martin's music too (that's where I met them) and we talked about the tour and stuff like that. Sure beats sitting in and watching TV, and definitely beats buying music online. Good for you Andy and enthusiastic crew- long may you thrive.