I collected my surprise guitars from the luthiers today. One of them, a Framus, came from the North London Hospice shop. It was filthy and I almost scrubbed the little brass logo off the top; I found it tangled and scrumpled up on the floor. Now it has had a new set of strings fitted and it twinkles sound-wise; it's a bashful, friendly chap and I've enjoyed strumming today.
The other, a Hofner, came from a market stall in County Durham. As soon as I saw it I wanted to play it and as soon as I played it I wanted to play it forever. It still has its original guarantee, a little yellow card filled out in the 1960s. It has had new controls fitted and a new pickup and its an absolute delight to play.
Luckily, I resisted the £8 mini-guitar in Tiger the other day. I don't think it would have lived up to these guys. Both of them are very battered and scratched and have seen better days. But so have I, and that might be why I love them so much.