I got to Frieburg on a beautiful Sunday morning, sat drinking coffee on a terras on the Radhaus Platz. I'd parked somewhere by the station - free because it was Sunday - and walked into the centre to get my bearings and get a taste of the atmosphere. After my coffee I decided I needed to find the tourist info offices - turned out they were on the square itself so I didn't have far to go. There I enquired about camping and busking. There were 3 campings - one of them a place reserved for just mobile-homes, the other side of the railway tracks. Regarding busking I was told there would be no problems. I felt settled, comfortable and enthusiastic about what was to come.
So I went back to the camper and set off to find the mobile-home site first - I got lost, couldn't find it anywhere and gave up, heading for the closest of the two normal campings.... and I'm so glad I did. It was busy and packed but they could slot me in for a few days. Parked next to a covered picnic table I had internet and electricity, but more importantly I was in a prime location to make contact with lots of other campers who had to pass by the table on their way to their tents in the field behind me. On that first afternoon I met a german family, and spent two hours talking in German to the ten year old daughter. I didn't realize that my German was that good. Later I got into conversation with an older man from Berlin who'd been cycling around France - again in German - he even commented on how good my German was. This was such a good experience that I sat there the whole day, just feeling at-home.... there'd be time for busking another day.
The second day I had contact with a friend from Amsterdam who would be arriving in Freiburg himself in a few days - and then I got a text-message from my son to say he was on his way too with a few friends and could we meet up - now that was the greatest gift I could have had at that moment. In this state of expectancy my focus wasn't on busking anymore but on the prospect of seeing my son shortly. So I sat another day and passed the time writing new songs. And these new songs are getting very close to the musical potential I feel within me - I'm discovering new chords and melodies, and inspiration far beyond my own talent. Like there is an abundance of songs yet to be written, and they're flowing to me in an unlimited effortless stream.
My son turned up the next day with three friends - but they had plans to head out farther to a camping located on a lake some 40 km away. But we drank coffee together. It was so good to see him. He told me how he's changed the house around and showed me some pictures, and what his plans weer for the coming month - and here's where my own plans changed. While he's holidaying, together with a girlfriend from his theatre-group who has taken the spare room in the house - the house is empty. Now, there are things I need to organise in Amsterdam (financial matters) and so I thought this would be a good opportunity to go there. This has an important effect on my state of mind - going back to Amsterdam was reserved for the end of my travelling - an end destination. And the thought was always, would I return having attained my goals, or with tail between legs searching for a job in an old way of life. Well, now I could return not as a final destination, but as just another en-route location... why not. I could try busking in Amsterdam - I could use the opportunity there to look for places to give a concert - I could visit the Mezrab again and see if I'm really ready as a storyteller. Amsterdam could be a better step to my goals than Freiburg. Once this idea took hold I couldn't wait to get back and make it all happen. But I waited a few more days til my friend arrived - spent an evening with him, then set off the next day for Amsterdam.
It was really nice to be in my house again - what peace - what comfort. Space to review how far I've come in these two-and-a-half months. I had one day alone, then my son came back - only to head out again a day later to Sweden - this time taking my camper with him. Being able to offer him the keys to the camper is something I've longed to be able to do since he got his driving license... it's a father thing!
So - I'm in Amsterdam for a couple of weeks, with no idea what will come after this or from this. I haven't tried busking yet (it's a big dragon), but I did take myself finally down to the Jet Lounge for the open mic session last Tuesday. That was an interesting experience and also a big step - done! I need to do it again a couple of times before I can say it doesn't scare me anymore, so that's something for the coming two Tuesdays. But my biggest wish now is to finally get up to tell a story at the Mezrab - and over the next 3 weeks I've got 3 oportunities to do just that. Here - now - in the comfort and space of my own house in Amsterdam, I'm making important steps that will, once conquered, free me from fears that have held me back in the past from following my heart truly. At this moment, travel, busking, selling cd's, being on the road, writing on this blog are not priorities for me - the inner journey of personal growth takes front seat - and that is my focus for the coming weeks.