Saturday, December 03, 2011

 Luxembourg Gardens:  Pan     M. Blair PESSEMIER    Oil on canvas  18 x 21  $450.00
 Thanksgiving trees    Laurie FOX Pessemier   Acrylic on canvas  12 x 12 inches 

Artnotes:  Home for the Holiday

Artnotes and painting fell by the wayside as I flew to Connecticut for the holiday.  It’s our first Thanksgiving without my Mom, and everyone was a little blue – so Blair found me a very cheap flight to Connecticut, where I was able to spread a little holiday cheer.

It was perhaps the worst flight of my life – on the new airbus 380.  Once nestled in seat 49F, on the ground floor, I tucked my arms into the seatbelt to keep them from flopping onto my neighbors.  King Kong, seated to my left, was not as thoughtful.  A matchstick girl on my right, who had been en route for more than 40 hours from Kilamanjaro airport, was friendlier – bumping into one another was ok, actually a comfort among the 582 passengers on board, 10 across.

The air was so thin, there was a request for “a doctor” as another passenger seemed to be having a heart attack.  I had difficulty breathing, and when the panic set in I realized we were pitifully deprived of oxygen.  Moments after the medical call, puffs of O2 burst forth from the air handling system and I could once again think clearly.   The lady beside me told me how she loved Africa – she’d been there as a volunteer in Tanzinia.  “I spent 8 hours sleeping on the floor of the airport in Sudan due to a delay – no lights, no services,” she told me, “and then to arrive in Paris to buy a 10 euro sandwich was such a contrast!”

It took 30 minutes to get the plane docked after landing (we needed a special tractor to bring us to the gate), and another half hour to get us all off.   “Welcome home,” the passport agent greeted me.

I hopped on the Connecticut Limo with ease.  It was already full, and I had to squeeze in next to a slightly smelly man with an Eastern European accent.  A French guy from my flight perched on the edge of the seat next to me.

We stopped at another terminal for one more.  A large, long-haired fellow up front threatened to “drop” the driver, speaking loudly into his cell phone, if we didn’t get underway at once.  The girl next to him seemed embarrassed.  The Indian we picked up had six suitcases.  There were groans of outrage in the van.  The French guy and I visited about how we liked New York at Christmas.  “Where are you getting off?” he asked.

The Frenchman moved back to the widest row, to the dismay of the very round couple, dressed in fur with piggy eyes, ensconced there,.  The Indian then sat beside me.   All the way home, the Eastern European was poking me in the ribs – “we’re driving too fast”, he’d hiss.    I wished for a seatbelt.

While the driver was arranging the six bags in the rear of the car, a radio reporter interviewed a woman at a New Jersey turnpike rest stop.  “Yes,” she said enthusiastically, “we’ve got four adults and a chihauhua in this car.  But I kind of like it, lots of conversation.” 

“Like us,” I told our group, “it’s what the holidays are all about”.   You could have heard a pin drop.
The Frenchman and the “tough” longhair debarked in Greenwich.  My smelly seatmate got off in Shelton.  I wished the round woman in her fur coat a Happy Thanksgiving as her husband chided her “don’t fall” as she stumbled out of the car in Middlebury.  “We’ll be alright now,” she told me, “now that we are almost home.”

Luxembourg Gardens Boules November   Blair PESSEMIER   Oil on canvas  9.5 x 12 inches  $450.00

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