Friday, July 20, 2012

If you don't like something change it; if you can't change it, change the way you think about it.


My house smells like a spice factory.  Or what I romantically imagine the Spanish galleons of old must have smelled like, heavily laden with riches.  Ponderous and wallowing things filled with cargoes  of spices, timbers, silks and other luxuries from the orient.  Enough to make you sneeze. 

Before I left adventuring in the land beyond laundry, I concocted a set of spice packets which I delivered for sale at the Ice House Gallery where I sell my art work.   Little envelopes designed  as glorified postcards, a place for a message, a stamp and an address, covered in my art work, and containing spices and associated recipes for Rockfish Chowder, Savoury Salmon Spice Rub, Halibut Chermoula and Kickin’ Crab Cakes.  A fun little addition to my more staid and traditional series of prints and cards. 

When I got home from camping... there were no less than four messages on my machine...
1.  I’m just not sure about these spices you’ve brought in.... please call me.
2.      I’m not sure we can accept these packets – they aren’t part of your original application describing the products you planned to sell
3.       I’m not sure we can sell these – the spices included are not grown locally and as you know we only sell locally made items and art work.
4.      Could you please bring some more spice packets down  as we have sold out of all of them.
Change is such a difficult thing.

So I spent an entire day mixing spices and loading envelopes to satisfy the demand of a new product in a small town.  

It was, in the end, no hardship to spend the day indoors, as I found much to my chagrin, the temperatures had plummeted, and I was dressed (in mid-july may I remind you!) in woollen slippers, long pants, long sleeves and a few extra layers looking out at the downpour wondering why I continue to live in this cold and dismal climate. 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Camping: The art of getting closer to nature while getting farther away from the nearest cold beverage, hot shower and flush toilet.

Too many projects, not nearly enough time. 

©RiverWalker Arts
But the best time of all is when you go away and there are no distractions.  No dishes lurking in the sink, no laundry slowing getting  sour and beckoning from the basement, no looking through windows covered in dog slobber and thinking how much better the view might be if only I spent some time washing the windows,  which then leads to cleaning the mould out of the aluminum tracks, which reminds me that the floor need a good clean to remove dog prints, slobber, dog hair, dust, baby drool and other miscellany... where upon I open the closet for the appropriate cleaning apparatus and realize that although I can get my closet doors closed (barely) they really need a thorough cleaning , sorting, organizing,  purging and general dung-out.... and while we are talking about closets – the linen cupboard, the fridge, the pantry and pretty much all storage locations in the house need a full on cleaning if I ever hope to find anything ever again..... did I mention my plant needs watering?  And there is a pink ring around the bathtub.  And the dog needs walking.  And the garbage needs to be taken out.  And the hedge needs trimming......  *sigh*.
©RiverWalker Arts

While some folks eschew camping as some form of sadistic experiment in biting insects and poor hygiene ...  (one friend told me “ why would I go live in a tent for fun? ...  I work hard to earn enough money so I don’t have to huddle around a fire in a barrel, and hunker down in the down pouring rain under the dubious shelter of  a tent” )   - I, personally love the way that all the jobs evaporate. I realize that out in the campsite, I have absolutely nothing better to do that nap on a blanket on the grass with my Chicken Little.  Nothing more pressing to do than roast a hot-dog slowly on a collection of warm coals in the fire pit.  Nothing more important than to throw the stick for the dog to chase endlessly. 
©RiverWalker Arts

It is a slice of freedom, a way to clear away the clutter and put some perspective on what really is and is not important. 

©RiverWalker Arts
Yes,  there were bugs, hundreds of thousands, Billions upon Billions of them, and yes I accumulated a lot of black gunk under my fingernails, and my feet looked pretty black on the bottom by the end of the day,  and yes in fact there was a flood in the camper, and yes in fact there were some problems with refrigeration, and not everything went as smoothly as one might hope....   but I rested.  And I came home inspired.  Inspired to write, to paint, to sew and to appreciate the little things....

Standby – brilliant works of art, and witty words will be forthcoming.. 


If I find time.

There are, after all, nearly four hundred and fifty six loads of laundry to do now that we are home, Oh and the garden needs weeding, and the bathroom needs scrubbing.... and....  and..

You sometimes see a woman who would have made a Joan of Arc in another century and climate, threshing herself to pieces over all the mean worry of housekeeping.  ~Rudyard Kipling