Halfway Point – Busking – Learning to Drive Stick Shift

12 shows down, 13 to go.  Last week I had a few solo shows toward the end of the week but tonight I’m back together with JeConte and Boubacar Sidibe at a bagel shop called “LOX” located in Bremen for our 1 – 2 punch of Acoustic Singer/Songwriter meets West Africa Mali Blues.

Yesterday I was going to a cafe with Joe from the other band.  We’ve been driving a rental car to most of our gigs, a nice Nissan SUV.  However, Joe has been the only one driving since it came to light that I have still not learned how to drive stick-shift in my life. (I was actually supposed to a long time ago, but that’s another story)  So Joe was dropping me off at a cafe to work on my computer yesterday, but before he took of, we decided it was high time I learned the ways of the manual transmission.  So I got in the drivers seat, he told me the basics, and then I started the car up.  From there the best way to describe the whole experience is as follows : LURCH -stall  — LURCH drive —– drive —stall===+++LURCH stall stall drive.  However after about 15 minutes of getting the hang of the gas and the clutch (and after releasing the emergency brake – whooops) it started to get a lot smoother.  Thankfully we were in an industrial park area with some long roads and parking lots.  I’m gonna try to get a couple more practices before taking it to the streets.  I see what people mean though, in a way it’s more fun than automatic.

Speaking of taking it to the streets – Last night we had a day off so after having dinner in the apartment I took the tram downtown and busked for about two and a half hours.  I only ended up with about 15 euros in my guitar case, but it was worth it for the experience.  I still feel very awkward doing street performing.  Once I get started it’s fine, but the initial act of stopping on the sidewalk, taking out my guitar and start tuning up is just kind of weird.  So I think last night was a big step in getting over that.  I got a few requests from people who were hanging around: “Blowin’ in the Wind”, “Hotel California”, and “Cat’s in the Cradle”.  The weather continues to be perfect here.  That’s all for now.

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