If, on the 25th of next month, you happen to be in Amsterdam, and you see a busker that you think sorta maybe slightly possibly looks a teeny tiny bit like me…
Come say hi. It’ll probably be me.
I’ve signed up for this Busking in Amsterdam experience in Airbnb — and before you ask, no, I’m not a singer or musician or any sort of performer. My singing skills are somewhat better than my acting skills but that isn’t saying much, as my acting skills (I’m not exaggerating) are absolute zero. I do like music but only as, shall we say, a casual sampler, not a connoisseur, and definitely not as a credible creator.
So what was I thinking when I signed up for this experience?
Good question. I don’t know. It just seemed like a good idea. Something about the experience just seemed to leap off my laptop screen and bury itself in my brain. I actually gave it up for a while — when the dates offered didn’t include the days I would be in Amsterdam — and I actually went and used up all my Airbnb credit on another activity (horseback riding, another thing I’m absolutely not qualified for). But when Louis, the host, told me he had put up new dates including April 25th, what should I say but:
“Okay, I’ll go ahead and book it right now, before I lose my nerve.”
What’s the worst that could happen, right? What have I got to lose? Pride? Pffft. Dignity, shmignity. 😀 Anyway, Louis did say, “The only demand I have is that you will be open and brave enough to join the group for our concert on the street stage. You don’t need any musical skills or experience.”
Here’s the complete description of the experience in Airbnb, if you’re interested:
I’ll be teaching you how to become a successful street musician. Tell stories from my 10 years’ experience playing music on the street and share insights on how to overcome the fear of stepping onto the big street stage. Step-by-step I’ll explain all the pros and cons, and share the big philosophy that comes with choosing a life on the edge of society. As we reach the last steps we’ll form a band, make a name, create a street sign and pick a song from my street repertoire. We’ll divide up the roles in the band which can be anything from singing, playing guitar, or even just clapping. Then, after a small practice session with our hit tune, we’ll play the busy Leidseplein, finishing the afternoon with our debut street concert.
A debut street concert in which I shall feature as a clapper, no doubt. 😀
Anyway, I think that’s what drew me — not the idea of clapping for my supper but the idea of stepping into a stranger’s life for a while. Doing something I normally wouldn’t do. Occupying a totally different world.
Kind of like why I travel in the first place, really.
So, if you’re in Amsterdam on the 25th of next month, and you see Louis being all kinds of awesome on the streets, and beside him you see me trying in vain to be invisible, come say hi. Remind me why I’m there.