In 1988 Tom and his father left Stockholm, Sweden for a vacation in exotic Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Ten-year-old Tom wanted nothing more than to become a famous guitarist. His father though, had other plans for him. He had even told Tom that the trip to Florida came with the condition that Tom gave up his silly dreams of becoming a musician. “Men are providers, Tom”, his father used to tell him.

This was the coldest winter in Florida in centuries. The news reported about spoiled orange harvests and despairing farmers. Even the normally hot sandy beaches were covered in thick frost and one could feel the icy wind cut to the bone. On Christmas Eve, Tom and his father decided to have breakfast in a café near their hotel. As they turned the corner to the café Tom saw a woman with a guitar, huddled up on the sidewalk. She was a locally known artist and street musician, who had spent the night sleeping outside the café. Her name was Jean Bodrow.

The windswept sidewalk whirled with dust and leaves, leaving no shelter. Despite these conditions, Tom was amazed as he watched her take off her rugged jacket and quietly wrap it around her guitar, almost as if the guitar was feeling cold. She nursed it tenderly, while shivering in her worn tank top.

Tom made up his mind.

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