Monday, February 18, 2008

Family Visit

Well, Doug and the kids arrived on Saturday afternoon. Of course I was looking forward to seeing them, but during the previous week I was feeling unsure about whether they should visit or not. I felt really odd about having my life here intertwine with my real life. And in fact I had a hard time keeping pace with everyone the first night especially. It's hard to explain but somehow being with my family, and NOT being back at the Studio Center felt very surreal. After talking to a number of the other residents, I found that nearly everyone has the same feelings of disconnect and readjustment when they leave here. There is something about this place that really grabs you......

But anyway. When they got here on Saturday, I showed them my studio and Doug was able to take a good look at what I have done here, and later on we talked about all of it, which was really helpful to me. We walked around a bit and I showed them my house and bedroom, the dining hall, and we visited my friend Val's (sculpture) studio. She wasn't there but had said we could go on in, as I thought my kids would like her work. And they did. We also saw Amanda's studio and Rachel's next door to mine. Unfortunately, things were kind of quiet so they didn't get to meet too many of the other artists.

Doug had gotten us two of the worst hotel rooms ever in Burlington (I won't go into the details, but let's just say that the badness included all five senses) and on Sunday we drove to Stowe to spend the day there. We had lunch, browsed in the shops and then decided to look for a room there, instead of going back to Burlington to the new hotel I insisted on switching to (we had all our stuff with us). It just so happened to be the busiest weekend of the year in Stowe, but we lucked out and after paying about a million dollars, we were able to get a chalet (above) for one night. It was a very odd place, very Austrian with dark wood and decorated in brown and orange, but it was clean, had two bathrooms and there was a bedroom for everyone, plus a hot tub out in the snow. Oh and on our way to check in, we made a quick detour to visit the Trapp Famliy Lodge. I enjoyed this because "The Sound of Music" has always been one of my favorite movies and I really enjoyed reading the autobiography of the real Maria von Trapp. The kids weren't quite so impressed, alas, but we did get a good picture of them with the beautiful mountains in the background.

We headed back to the "commune" this morning and I have to say that it was very strange when they drove off leaving me here, in a place I feel so connected to now, yet is not my home. I holed up in my studio working for an hour or so and then felt much better after talking to so many of my new friends over lunch.

I worked all afternoon and will skip watching Casablanca in the lounge tonight in order to work a bit more in my studio. I am pursuing a direction with the figurative work that I am finding very interesting so far and since there are only ten days left here, I want to really make some progress on those.

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