Monday, April 26, 2010

Weekend in Savannah

Well, this doesn't look like, it's me trying to see what I'm doing through my own specs and the safety glasses as I sand the outside of some little boxes I made for the Savannah show in Gordonston Park.  You know, doing little things is not the same as doing cheap things.  In this case, working on small gourds is as much work as doing something large for a much larger price.  I think this may be the last of the boxes!

But seeing old friends and sitting in this very delightful and funky little enclosed patio of an organic coffee bar/cafe at the end of Forsyth Park was just one of the great things about spending the weekend in Savannah.  Watching the great shadows cast on the walks is another....

Then there was eating pizza at Vinnie's which I don't have a pic of because it was too delicious to put down long enough to take a pic of.  The place hasn't changed a bit - packed as always and no pizza anywhere that's any better...we had a medium pesto (no tomato sauce) with spinach, garlic, jalepenos, mushrooms and anchovies....WOW!  And finally, a chance to say Hello to our new little friend, Nia!

And then a quiet ride home to Salisbury .

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Helping a great kid...and other stuff

Does anyone out there know of a math tutor/mentor in the Poughkeepsie, NY area who would be willing to help a kid in need, and for next to no money???  This isn't about art, or shows, or my travels, or thoughts.  This is about a bright kid who is about to start a new school but who may have to stay back a year because of very poor math skills.  There is no extra money in the family, so I'm looking for someone who just want to help out.  Any ideas?

On another note, keeping up with all this IT stuff is taxing my brain.  I don't have the "blending" quite right they all connect w/o spending my life at it....really, I need to paint.

And speaking of painting, I'm part of a show Aug-Oct of artists who work in more than one medium.  I am showing tapestries (seems like ancient history now!), gourds, and paintings.  This is the tapestry photo I sent for publicity purposes - and it's odd how appealing it was to me, after years of not weaving...mmmmm, I can feel the threads in my fingers now and all those gorgeous colors blending into a painting..........

"The Garden House"
Handwoven tapestry.  Silk, wool, rayon, cotton.  1998

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Best Ice Cream in the World....and still on the way home

Not exactly as the crow flies, unless he's been blown off course by a hurricane...Scottsdale to San Diego to Scottsdale to Albuquerque to OK City where the Red Buds appeared and continued to be the only color in view until St. Louis and now Cincinnati. In St Louis, I delivered several paintings to a lovely old neighborhood, Kirkwood, full of charming brick homes surrounded by huge deciduous trees, ubiquitous flowering pears, redbuds, and the darling of Spring, the dogwood with its delightful white petals and yellow centers.  There is something so solid and secure about those older homes in the midwest and east.  Most of us who were raised in that style home and it is like a big hug when I get to be in one again.

 Lots of road, lots of zzzzs while Syed drives but tonight THE BEST ICE CREAM IN THE WORLD!

Well, it WAS the best ice cream in the world....didn't last long.  And in case you can't read the label it's GRAETERS from Ohio.
Usually we would load up a couple of 1/2 gallons and bring it home on dry ice, but since the stay in AZ was a little fattening this year, we are foregoing the luxury.

Today we saw the real sign of Spring...Dandelions!
A sea of dandelions! Each one with those squared off petals waiting to become a burst of puff spreading their childish joy (oh woe to the yard fanatics out there!) for all to play with.  Who doesn't remember blowing the silver-white arrows into the air?  I love them now, soft cushions underfoot, bright and warm after winter's cold hard ground.  They are so gloriously persistent.  Perhaps they better deserve their space than that finicky, ever thirsty grass so many are slaves to.

Long may you live, Dandelion!
And tomorrow, FINALLY, home to Salisbury.  I look forward to a beautiful drive through WV since I-40 is still closed from last fall's rock slide.

I'll check in again from home and till then, enjoy Spring!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Fulfilling his dream

5:00 pm 4/08/10
Near the Grey and Donley county lines and the town of Jericho, Texas, we pulled the van over to the side of the highway to wait for Al Slusser who was walking along the highway, to catch up to us. At first we thought he was on a recumbent bike, but no, he was walking, pulling a two-wheeled cart behind him from which a bit of water was dripping. He had that weathered look of someone who spends most of the time out in the wind and sun, wore a scrunched hat with “Arizona” across the front, beat up jeans, and a tee shirt with a highway worker’s yellow vest with green iridescent stripes and a message on the back – about Unity and Pray for the USA. He caught up to us and seemed pleased and surprised to hear we had pulled over for him. And he told us his story. He is 71 and fulfilling his dream of walking coast to coast, and collecting knots in a red, white, and blue rope. Each knot is tied by someone he meets along the way who can take the pledge to “stand up for the USA and kneel down for her.” Al was inspired by John Kennedy’s “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.” He carries only a small section of rope, about 3’, with him. When it is full of knots, he sends it to a group in AZ who adds it to the other pieces and Al hopes that when they send him the completed “Unity Ball” when he reaches Washington, DC, that it will be quite large, and he hopes to present it to the President as a symbol of so many Americans praying for the unity of their country. Al said it all started with his “bucket list”, things he wanted to do before he dies, but it has grown into a larger vision – one of inspiration – and indeed, he has dedicated his walk to senior citizens and disabled Americans.  Al's got a website -  We will think of you often, Al.  God bless you on your travels as you walk the talk.

Travels home


Ending a show…

Ten weeks, plus four or five days on either end for setting up and tearing down. That would be 78+/- work days in a row – ok, ok, once in while there’s a morning off to do laundry, go to the grocery store, maybe get a haircut. So, when we are finished, what do we do?

Spend some time with the grandkids at the beach watching the seals give birth, take a ride up to watch the paragliders jumping off the cliffs at Torrey Pines, and wander around some cool neighborhoods finding poetic jewels in the midst of a teeming city…..

Anybody know where this is?......                                                                            

Then our little interlude is over and we are wending our way back to NC, and with all due respect to those living in the west of NM or the panhandle of Texas, it is less than a visually stimulating ride. The miles of flat bone colored grass with only very occasionally something remarkably beautiful (like the wind turbines stretching across the prairie spied along I-40 in the panhandle), or joyfully unexpected (the old car sculpture farther east on the same road) which, apologetically, I did not get to photograph…Syed says “next time” as I’m hollering, “STOP”.

I know that there is poetry in this bareness, but it’s a poetry I haven’t learned to appreciate except in a very ….OH STOP! This truck is carrying an ENTIRE load of BEES! Where are you going and why? The grasses are sage green, pavement various shades of dust, palest of blue skies punctuated by telephone pole sticks. Cadmium yellow road signs keep me awake. Black dots of Angus and a fence line wandering away into the far distance. No NPR. But a thrash of black birds executes a rush of sharp angles in front of us, and gone.