This week

This week marked my sixty-third sail around the sun, and feeling just fine with the added years. In fact I embrace them. I feel fuller, richer, and more calm now than in my bumbling, awkward youth thank you very much; as long as I can keep the body in good health.

This week also is host to my best “Artist’s date” yet. Currently I’m sequestered in Emily Carr’s historical artist’s studio for three days; soaking in the ambiance. I am re-reading the books I have about her as I take in the exact location she inhabited, the very spot where her life’s work came out of obscurity, where, in my mind and in the minds of many, she took her (unofficial) place as a member of the Canadian Group of Seven, representing the West. But then, she is in good company as a non member; Tom Thompson, the artist most thought of as part of the group is not in fact a member either. So, if you’ll excuse this brief post, I’ve got to get back to it.

Cheers!

New Look

Time for a fresh blog-site look, like a new spring wardrobe, a makeover, spring cleaning of sorts. Open the windows let the breeze in and sweep away the musty fustiness.

I spent the week under-glazing mugs, and still working to finish them, and also took a drive up island, to Coombs market to buy corn tortillas. Yes, it’s a thirty minute drive, perhaps too long for a tortilla. But they make them fresh and plentiful stacked in a bag. And it was as good excuse as any to get out on a fine day for a drive. Like a vacation, something we see little of these days, but I’ll take it- humble as it is.

Laying out under-galzing palette colours

And visual stimulation is key. I need it. I am surrounded by trees on a tiny island and sometimes a long drive to anywhere sets things right. A long drive is like an “Artists Date” for me. An opportunity to reload with a bit of new stimulus. Images and sensations flood my visual field, my mind can wonder, yes even while behind the wheel. You know that sensation, the hum of the road, your eyes can stretch in all directions as can your mind, you’re on automatic pilot. Many people get their best ideas while driving.

What also works for me is walking around a downtown, an urban centre. In fact that is my favourite way to load up on stimulus, ideas, material. My downtown of Nanaimo isn’t much, although we have a population of nearly one hundred thousand, we have one old quarter street of any interest. (oops, I’m not being a good ambassador). The rest of the city’s development flows north in a series of malls along a four lane highway. Not lovely. But there is Victoria, an hour and a half away, and of course Vancover, a ferry ride away. These cities I love to wonder through.

Back to Coombs and the market. They didn’t have any tortillas. Next week the sales girl said. Deflated, but undeterred because next to the market in a rustic wooden a-frame is Billy G’s fresh gourmet donuts. Talking small batch.Totally not what we came for but it took the pout off our lips. Fresh donuts are magic. We bought six, which you can’t see in the photo because they are stacked, and in reality was four too many, but how can you not want to try dulce yum-yum or pineapple coconut rum, or strawberry delight, or that one with salted caramel inside?

A side note: The Coombs market is known for their goats that graze on the roof shown behind the box of Yumminess. Unfortunately, it’s too early in the season, so no goats on the roof in this shot. And not many people either. That will change when the weather warms up. Masked and social distanced of course!