My cities Central Station has had a huge makeover recently and one new addition to it has been a piano in the entrance. Every now and then, someone will build up the courage and play it. Drunks up for a laugh, professionals making the most of a surprising opportunity in the late hours before closure.
I went through the station this evening to use an ATM, the only two people in there were police officers taking advantage of a quiet evening. Then it appeared there was a third person on the piano that caught my attention as the notes echoed through the empty walkways. The surprise wasn’t so much it was being played, rather it was being played pretty damn well. He was about 100 meters away, at the time I didn’t know whether it was a male or female. Age, ethnicity, all a guessing game.
I don’t have any photos or videos, it all happened in an instant. What I can say though is that I’ve typed too many posts on seeking the truth to exaggerate a story like this. Similar to Tenacious D’s song Tribute about the greatest song in the world but no clues as to what it sounded like, I’m solely writing about the incident, the rest is history.
What did he play? I wish I knew. It sounded great though, very classical, although I don’t know enough about the genre to know what ‘very classical’ means. The closer I got to him, what I thought were baggy clothes turned out to be a sleeping bag. He got up, muttered a few indecipherable words regarding the piano and some hand gestures to associate.
My friend shook his head in shame and simply said the words…
‘It can happen to anyone, you know’.
He’s right. A reminder that a homeless person in the street could well have a colourful past, a past that may well eclipse our present. I carried on my evening, seeing The Prodigy live which turned out to be a great evening of entertainment. The pianist definitely contributed though, I will look out for him in the future.