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Some people, when they answer the door, they they look me up and down and they ask me "why?" Why? Are you not blind. Why? Can't you see? Or why, don't you have a dog? Or why haven't you lit a pipe? Why don't you smoke? I had one person - looked me up and down - and said "are you the piano tuner?" I said "yes!" And he said: "But... but you're normal!" Some people just have this idea of the piano tuner, as being some kind of weirdo, which is great, cause I can do what I want then! If you get a piano tuning mathematically correct, and... it won't actually sound that good. The human ear and human brain perceive sound, you know, differently from a computer. You can stretch up to sol, you can make it sound more pleasant to hear and sometimes there's compromises to be made and you've just got to listen to it and subjectively say "that sounds nice". I would say, is more of a technical process yeah... but to outsiders it is not. Richard I remember specifically one afternoon, I looked around my flat, looked at my LCD tv and I thought when was the last time I had time to watch that and I looked at my play-station which I never even played, I still had this mountain of student debt and bank-run debt, which I was only scratching the surface of and in the end I just saw, actually the only thing I really value in this flat is the hot shower. Everything else I can do without. And I loved to travel more, I loved just to be free to do what I want and not be chained to one place, because I need to have a lot of work and... to enable me to pay for this stuff, which I can't use anyway. I can... I just didn't see a future in it. I haven't had too many negative reactions, I've had a few people sort of realising I'm sleeping rough and I... "oh! really?" Nice people... very... curious and interested. I get a barrage of questions "and how do you... how do you wash", "how do you shower", "do you feel safe"... You know, I don't want to be an environmental nut and say "everybody should sleep outside like me!" I feel like, you know, in one and a half years I just paid full my debts and made some savings just from not having expenses and student debts that I carried for 7 years you know. And I thought I would never get to the bottom of it. And in one year it was all gone. And now I feel like a free man! So, it's just is ultimate freedom, it's just... I have the time to do what I want, really... You don't need anything to be happy. You know... Now, I've got nothing. I just got that bag. I've got a couple of boxes with stuff stashed in my parents' house, but I don't care about it. When I get around to them, I give most of it away or throw it away. And... But... You know... Everything I need is in that bag. And... I don't need anything. And I'm happy. I'm really happy, you know, I've never been happier in my life. There's always a new street, there's always a new park, always a new view of the Thames, you know, the lights change, the weather changes and there's always new people to meet. It's just amazing.

Video Details

Duration: 4 minutes and 53 seconds
Country: United Kingdom
Language: English
Director: Matt Hopkins
Views: 73
Posted by: tinaki on Nov 12, 2014

Richard is the fascinating story of a travelling piano tuner who chooses to live outdoors. Shot in London, the film takes an alternative look at someone who treats the entire city as a home. Richard is part of the film series England Your England. For more films and information visit or his blog:

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