Saturday, May 11, 2019

Pack Your Bathing Suit

Wild Yellow Iris at Farfa/Tevere   Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/paper  17 x 25"  41 x 63cm 

Window on via Margutta  Blair Pessemier  acrylic/panel  18 x 12"  45 x 30cm

 Fun on the Grass Vescovio  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvas panel 10 x 14" 25 x 35cm

Just Kids Vescovio  Laurie Fox Pessemier  Acrylic/canvaspanel  12 x 18"  30 x 45cm

Ancient Stone Bench Vescovio  Blair Pessemier  18 x 12"  45 x 30cm

For the first time in twenty years, we are not going to the USA for the summer.  I get a twitch in my throat every time I think of Hemlock Lodge without us:  no dinners on the glassed-in porch; no bird mobile; no art show on the porch; no swimming in Highland Lake.  Hemlock Lodge was like deluxe camping, and as long as my father was alive, we could go to his house and take a shower or wait out the rain.  But last summer was more difficult, and Harika will be 12 human years old in less than a month, travel by air for her has never been easy.   

Before you run to fetch your hanky, let me say we are taking a vacation – by car.  We’re heading to the beach in Brittany to see friends, and then spending a couple of weeks in Paris.  We’ll visit the old haunts and find new ones in a different neighborhood.   We’ll make day trips here and there and paint up a storm.

I just read in a sample of a book I am buying:  “one of the gifts of being (an artist) is that it gives you an excuse to do things, to go places and explore.”  We can travel with a sense of purpose. You can enjoy the results.

We are having the “Ave Maria” show at Vescovio at the moment, ending Sunday.  I must say it has had the most gracious and wonderful visitors, and I feel terrific about the experience.  Vescovio is much more than a church – although it is an ANCIENT church were St. Peter is reputed to have said a mass.  We are situated in a room by the bell tower and monastery, with our own generous and very visible entry.  The room is littered with old statues missing their heads and bits of masonry which toppled from the 10th century church in various earthquakes.  There are several acres of manicured grounds where children play, teenagers pose, parents watch and old folks perch throughout the day.  There is a gelato shop and a restaurant where they cook on an open grille.  A path winds by us to the top of a hill where there are pre-10th century ruins.  Harika likes it.   I feel lucky to be there.

After trying to meditate for many years, I seem to have finally made some headway this week.  Of course, this comes after having a meltdown and realizing I have to get my imagination under control.  I am thankful to the internet for various free introductions, and innumerable youtube videos which inspire.  I hope to die with a greatly evolved brain.

So, right now, we’re packing our bathing suits from Stimigliano to go up to Rocca Malatina.  They had snow there just a week ago, but we will not be daunted.  I am going to build sculptures for my climbing roses, and to foil Ludovico, our gardener.   I will invest in tools.   I’d like a swimming pool but may have to settle for the Panaro River.

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