Friday 24 February 2012

the organ grinder

The other day, sitting at my desk, I heard unfamiliar strains of music coming from the yard.  
At the far end of the lane stood a black-cloaked and top-hatted organ grinder.
A mother holding a child danced to his tune.

He would play one or two, then move on a few yards and play some more, looking up as windows opened and people smiled down, tossing coins wrapped in a paper serviettes and coloured envelopes.  It used to be they'd wrap them in cloth handkerchiefs.

The sound from his organ was both haunting and joyful as it carried through the winter air.

He graciously allowed me to take his photo from my window.

He completed his circuit of our yard and left, leaving many of us with spirits uplifted.  A lovely gift on a grey Winter's day.  


  1. music that lifts the heart and soul on any day, especially a wintry one

  2. Beautiful enchantment! No monkey, I see, and better that way I think.

  3. Wow, to think someone still does that. The first photo of him looked like an impressionistic painting. It would make a great painting.

  4. How utterly awesome ~ music is such a timeless magic! And how very cool that you live in a place where that kind of magic comes strolling in wearing a top hat :~)

  5. That's fantastic. We could all use a visit from an organ grinder in a top hat.

  6. nice atmospheric post Lynn ... :)

  7. Yes, Cranky Crone, it was beautifully magical.

    It was surprisingly uplifting, gz. Somehow otherworldly too.

    I did look for a monkey, Valerianna, when I saw him way down the lane, but I agree, it's better without.

    It was such a treat, green orchid.

    At first I had wanted to get a better shot of him down at the end, JanMac, but I think you're right, it's got an impressionistic feel this way. Fittingly of another time.

    The top hat was just perfect, Donna!

    Yes, Aria! It's those organ-grinder-in-a-top-hat moments that give magic to our lives.

    Thanks, Jan.

    And all the more so, Donna, for being so unexpected.

  8. So charming... A grand addition to the landscape and the day.

  9. Charming's the right word, Marly! In every sense.

  10. Oh my goodness that sounds so magical! Here in Ontario we'd have to struggle with the sealed-up winter windows and then the screens...

  11. One of the things that struck me when I first moved to Germany from Ontario was that there were no screens on the windows! I can't remember the last time I had a mosquito bite...
    One thing I do miss - in spite of how many times I've had to clean up ripped apart garbage - is the raccoons. They don't have them here.

  12. Oh, to live in such a place, where magic like this could happen...

  13. It really was a delightful surprise, Sharmon. Those moments of magic, however brief or seldom, are such a gift.

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