This morning I took a quick ride over to one of my top 1,000 places to relax in Gloucester, the Rocky Neck Ave. causeway. I pulled into the parking lot that overlooks Smith Cove, opened the driver-side window and took my camera out of its case. As I was firing up the camera and checking the settings, the sound of beautiful classical guitar entered the car and surrounded me. I just sat still for a moment, believing that somehow I had become part of a movie and the soundtrack I was listening to had been perfectly matched with the beauty and serenity of the Smith Cove scene that laid before me.

When the music paused, I left the car and noticed a man on a nearby bench. Sure enough, he had a guitar in hand and was just gazing out at the calm cove waters while taking a break. He introduced himself to me as Paco and explained that he is a former professional musician who now plays mostly for his own enjoyment. He told me that he currently plays the accordion more frequently than the guitar because that instrument can more easily punch through the sound of a busy deck while he entertains passengers and crew aboard some of Gloucester’s schooners.

I was pleased to have discovered Paco at the perfect time, in the perfect place while he supplied the perfect ambiance to a perfect scene.







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