People love to brag -- I mean, tell you -- about their vacations (it seems the girl who cuts my hair always goes on better ones than I do, for instance.)
The conversations go something like this:
I'm going _____________!(You're thinking, "Rats! That's somewhere I've always wanted to go. . . ")
I'm ACTUALLY going to get to see _____________________!(You're thinking, "Hey -- that's umber one on MY bucket list.")
You smile and say, "Take lots of pictures! I can't wait to see them!"(You're thinking, "Drat Jimmy's orthodontics. I haven't been on a real vacation for ages. Now I will have to pretend to enjoy the pics.)
People used to come back from their trips and then invite you over to watch their millions of slides . . . at least our technological leaps have brought some advantages.
I could brag about my own upcoming trip . . .
I mean the jealousy-inducing 20 hour drive to Virginia in the pickup truck to stay in an aging Holiday Inn because everything else in the state seems to be booked! But bragging isn't really very nice.
On the upside . . .
And I can certainly
brag about her!
You might ask (like the girl who cut my hair did)
WHY ON EARTH ARE WE DRIVING TO VA INSTEAD OF FLYING?!
That would be a good question. An even more specific one would be, "Susan, why are you driving that exceptionally uncomfortable truck to Virginia, when you're not even doing a show there?"
(Which reminds me that, looking on the bright side, I'm not doing a show on this vacation!)
The answer to that would perhaps be best illustrated by one of the very first posts to appear on Small Works, written while Hannah was packing to go to college. I'll replay some of it now:
Stuff to the Ceiling, Stuff to the Sky. . .
(Her piles of stuff are a mile high!)
Not MY stuff of course, but that of a certain soon-to-depart college student whose mounting piles have now mostly cut off the entrance to my studio and are threatening to choke the upstairs all together, if left unchecked. Can't we start loading some of that into the trunk of your car? Actually, CAN'T YOU START LOADING SOME OF THAT INTO THE TRUNK OF YOUR CAR??!! I thought I had taught her to "have nothing in your home that you do not find to be useful or believe to be beautiful." Well, in all honesty William Morris taught us both that, but the problem appears to be that: 1) She either can't differentiate between useful and beautiful or, 2) She thinks its just beautiful the way everything might become useful if she hangs on to it. Of course then she comes up with things like Venus made from a Captain Crunch box and I have to forgive her for everything and put it on my coffee table because it's just so -- for lack of a better word -- STUNNING. Everyone should have a Venus made from a Captain Crunch box. In fact, perhaps no one should ever throw away empty Captain Crunch boxes. It's like pouring possibilities down the drain with the leftover gold-tinged-crumb-floating milk. What's that quote about hating most in others the qualities we despise in ourselves?
Here's a PARTIAL list of things I had to step over to get into my studio today:
--2 LARGE metal daisies (these will look great on the walls of my room!!)
--2 expandable peg coat racks (these will be great for hanging my vintage hats on!!)
--1 set hanging baskets (these will be great for keeping STUFF in!!)
--1 enormous plastic bin - ENORMOUS - of painting supplies (I need more painting stuff!!)
--1 large vintage spice rack (I could paint this and put stuff ON IT!!)
--1 big blue IKEA bag full of dishes and rugs (we need more rugs!!)
--2 3-foot pieces vintage wood molding (I could put hooks on these!! And hang stuff!!)
--1 stack empty picture frames (my room needs more pictures!!)
See, she's only taking the essentials.
I understand completely.
Fast forward to 2011. Hannah's been living in a room that was designed for 4 girls, but she needed a private room (having once been voted off the island [freshman year] for having too much stuff -- we thought it would be wise) and it was the only room they had left.
She admitted sheepishly when she was visiting for Christmas that I may be "a bit surprised to see just how many THINGS have made their way to Virginia with her!"
Nonsense. I won't be a bit surprised. I know what's missing. And I saw her take a fully loaded car every time she left the house to go back to school.
Hence the need for the truck. Her car just can't do the job. No car could. What I'm worried about is the fact that Hannah's room is the only other room on this floor besides MY wonderful and spacious new STUDIO. Where is all that stuff going to go when we unload the truck? And how long is it going to be here?
You see the problem.
But it's going to be so good to
have our Hannah back again!
(Love you, Sweetie! You know the drill --
keep your head down and no breathing before the wall! Just a few more days!)
And of course no mother can help but
be excited to hear which song
her little fledglings are going
to attempt to sing next . . .
It's going to be a great trip
(no guarantees about the aftermath).
Small Works will return on or around May 4 (if I can find my computer in the rubble).
Y'all come back now!
(Going South. Just getting ready.)