As a wise clown told me once: Use your nose!
When I hitchhike and I only stand somewhere where I can´t speak to anybody for long time, I get my nose out and wait for a car with my clown nose.
I have the feeling more red cars are stopping. 😀
But is not about this, it´s more about to have fun. In the time people will not take you, at least some will smile. And that will help you to get over a short waiting time and also makes you more happy. I personally love balloons. I like to make them, mostly a flower, sometimes even without a clown nose and show them to passing cars. It looks friendly and more like a young person.
Food in restaurants:
If you go to a restaurant there a two tips I can offer:
1. Go inside as a clown, and make Balloons and give clown noses to the children of the owner of the restaurant. Or made them some and tell your story.
2. Best in front of Ice-Cream store´s: Busk with Balloons.. for Ice Cream..
Children love Ice Cream and Balloons and clowns, it should not take more than 3 costumer to get an Ice for you.
If you walk around and it looks like that you are a busker because you look like a clown than speak with other busking people. They mostly quite friendly and they know how to live cheap in this place. And they also know where to sleep cheap or for free while traveling. There is even a chance that they invite you to sleep for free in there place.