An unexpected delay last Monday created tthe opportunity to hear some wonderful music.
I was due to meet a friend at Charing Cross, but she had been held up. As I mused about what I was going to do, the choice seemed to be just nipping to a coffee shop across the road or going to a really nice coffee shop on Monmouth Street. – I haven’t actually been there yet, but some serious coffee drinker friends of mine highly recommend it, and I have been to the one in London Bridge. ( Monmouth Coffee Company)
Anyway, I digress..
I then remembered that I had wanted to check out The Crypt at St Martin-in-the-field, which triggered another memory, which was that I’d read somewhere that they have free lunch time concerts.
So off I went to see what I could find out, and was pleasantly rewarded by finding out the lunch time concert (held on a Mon, Tues, & Fri) was starting at 1pm. With 15mins to go, I headed back up to the church, where I had not long passed through a throng of people going in. – I think I had assumed they were tourists or going in for a service!
I became a part of the throng, and with my concert sheet in hand sat down in anticipation, hoping I would get some of the concert before my friend arrived.
I took a seat at the back, mainly because I knew I’d have to slip out early. However, had I wanted a closer seat, the pickings would be slim, as the church was pretty much full of a diverse throng of people.
From where I was, I could see the the open lid of the grand piano. I sat there taking it all in, and my thoughts alternating from thinking how beautiful the church was, to “maybe I should change my seat”, to snippets of the partially overheard conversation of the two mature ladies in front of me . – I got the distinct impression that at least one of them was a regular.
I did eventually move to one of the side cubicles. I still couldn’t see the extraordinary pianist, but did feel I could slip out more discretely.
From my new vantage point, I was intrigued by the 2 oriental gentleman, their heads laid on the back of the pews in front of them. This sight spoke to me of the need of a safe haven, their need of a place to rest, to literally ‘lay their heads’…
Caught up in the reverie of sound, I closed my eyes. My total abandon to what I was hearing only disturbed by my anticipation of my phone going. I had it held in my lap, the reception kept going, and my friend didn’t know where I was. – This distraction also made me aware of the drilling sound from outside.
As it was, exactly at the moment of applause – signifying the end of the first part – my phone started ringing. I popped my small donation in the bucket and went off to further enjoy the rest of the day.
*As well as the free lunchtime concerts, there are Evening concerts and Jazz Nights in the Crypt. – There is a cost for these.