Sunday, 25 August 2013

Love and the sea...

Home again. It has been a long, hard couple of days and this is one of the only downsides of going to our part of Brittany: leaving the house around 10.30, having to kill time until the night ferry from Roscoff (admittedly we have got this bit down to a child-friendly tee with a day trip to the local zoo followed, I'm ashamed to say, by dinner at the Buffalo Grill, a bizarre and very popular American country and western chain that is a curiosity of French culture), then a dreadful night's sleep in a cabin with two over-tired and yet over-excited children, wake up calls at around five in the morning then driving back to get home at the time most people are thinking about what to have for Sunday breakfast, and then having to kill another day without killing eachother. But it is worth it. That's how much I love it there.

On the drive home this morning it suddenly occurred to me that it was usually my time for a morning swim, well, usual for the last two weeks anyway. The thought of it nearly brought tears to my eyes. I will miss that so much. Imagine as a taster starting to walk down to the shore on a beach with only birds' footprints in the sand:-

Imagine then that off to the left the sun is shining and leaving blinding sparkles on a small stretch of the sea. A few weeks ago I was baffled about why for me putting beads on the right hand side of the sea in my pictures felt so wrong, and while I was away I realised that it is all based upon my first-thing-in-the-morning swim here and where the sun is at that point. Imagine too that the sea is usually calm and clear and you can see through the water around your feet and occasionally spot a shoal of tiny fish or a little crab scuttling. Imagine though that everything is a little bit fuzzy, just because you haven't bothered to put in your contact lenses yet. Imagine the cold around your legs, enough to make  you think of turning back, but not as bad as the ribbing you would get if you went back indoors still dry, or the shame of the thought of any strangers watching you give up. So imagine the final immersion, the gasp-inducing cold followed by a warm internal glow a couple of minutes later, all bleary-eyed sleepiness gone from your existence. A shower, a pain aux raisins and a coffee and all is good in the world.

Coming home today was also hard because I had to find about my two exhibitions. First the one in Nailsea: no sales but apparently some interest. So the Clevedon Art Club one was doubly tense and I felt a little emotional in my fatigue as I was driving there to pick up my pictures; should I give it all up if it hadn't gone well? I was wondering if any had sold but more pressingly had any of the four even been selected to be exhibited? What if nothing had even been on show? Well it turned out there was not a lot to be concerned about: all four had been in the show, and one had sold! And weirdly, aptly and tellingly the one of the beach where I was on holiday had sold:-


And that feels good. Odd that I had made it so many months before and yet had to wait until I was back on that beach for it to get sold. Great that I hadn't taken it with me to try and sell over there, which would never have been easy. And proof once again that love of something in a picture comes through and appeals to other people. Must do more sea pictures...

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