Blasts of music and crowd-calling voices rolled around the pillars of Covent Garden Market like fog around trees - seemingly within ones grasp, but always a little further away from where one actually is.
After a short period of being enticed by the misleading sounds of acrobats with loud backing music, crowd-pulling magicians and diabolo-sellers, I found an enthusiastic string (and flute) quintet performing in the basin courtyard outside the Crusting Pipe wine bar. Above them people watched, leaning over the railings that lined the four sides of yard.
I went down the staircase, sat on a stone step and for half an hour was entertained by the familiar music of Mozart, Strauss, Bach, Offenbach and Europe. There was witty banter and some nifty dance moves that dangerously bordered on the gymnastic - the second violinist was nearly a faller at the Can-Can.
They were called Lotus (or was it Locus?). It was fortunate for them that they put on a good show, because, according to their flautist and spokeswoman, they were in fact playing for their supper - "we will wither away" - and would be doing so again at four o'clock.
2015 update. Lotus (it's not Locus) according to their website still seem to have a connection with The Crusting Pipe and are also available for weddings and corporate events!