Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Syd Kitchen and I, and how we survived...

What a long and strange journey it has been... My brother Wren and I began playing music together some 4 years ago, shortly after his return from travelling through Israel, Egypt and Jordan. During that time, I had been performing solo and touring with Syd Kitchen, who had taken me on as a musical son under his rather unstable wing... A dream I had one night a year or two before while still living in Johannesburg became reality on one of these adventures through the Transkei with Syd. I came as close to death as I had ever been before, or have been since. 

We were struck from behind by an ambulance that was flying (funny thing is they had no emergency, they were just cruising around normally for a Sunday in the Kei) and were spun and propelled off the road and flung off a bridge. My car was to end up on the driver side in a dry river bed some 30 metres or so off the road the road, and I remember those moments as some of the most vivid of my life... Syd was groaning and not all together there...  I just chanted Hare Krishna and managed to undo my seatbelt and crawl out of the boot, to the amazement of some onlooking Rastafarians who had observed the whole accident as if watching a film while chilling out on the wall of an old church. After I had helped Syd out of the wreck, the Rastas were so shocked that we had both survived, they couldn't help shouting encouragement to us and calling to everyone in the area! 

A crowd soon gathered, and Syd and I staggered up the hill to the roadside. The community helped get our belongings out my poor car. Guitar luthier Ian Corr collected us from Butterworth and afforded us a few days recovery at his home in Morgan Bay. Physically we were fine except for the usual whiplash, bumps and scrapes and Syd had a few broken ribs! My car was a write-off, my guitar smashed (Syd's Maingard survived thanks to my guitars sacrifice). It was a day of a strange and miraculous event 30 November 2008,  Still, the tour went on...


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