Monday, November 12, 2007

ROAD LESS TRAVELED

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth

Then took the other as just as fair
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet, knowing how way leads onto way
I doubted if I should ever come back

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence
Two roads diverged in a wood
And I took the one less traveled by
And that has made all the difference

Robert Frost


It is good to be home. Obviously the wear and tear of traveling all year long and the physical nature of constructing then tearing down a booth 21 times this season has made me feel my age. I can report that I'm in a better mood this week. Sales weren't great but we had a decent show. I sold a couple of originals on canvas and a bunch of smaller works on canvas paper. Also I accomplished one of my goals for back to back shows in the same area: repeat customers! I'm certain we'll be able to feed the kids this week for a change and we might even get to pay one of our utilities. Good stuff, my friends....good stuff.

As you can see my newest bestest buddy came out to see me yesterday. Lindsay Ashman came with a purpose too. I mentioned last week in my first blog entry about her that she couldn't touch her toes. As you can see she proved me wrong.

Obviously getting to introduce her to several of my artist friends was the highlight of the weekend. Every now and then I get a HUGE reminder of why I love this profession I'm in. Part of it is the community that I travel with. As I introduced Lindsay to them, explained our new friendship, and mentioned her fund raiser I literally saw the light bulbs turning on. Every time I stepped back and let Lindsay do most of the talking (she discovered my penchant for wanting to be a part of the conversation unnecessarily). My friends were curious about her but phrased their questions in the most respectful and thoughtful manner. Since Lindsay will most likely read this I also wanted to mention how every one of them came to me after she left to say how impressed they were with her. Not just because she's a "special needs" gal but they actually see what Lindsay has been all along: passionate life-loving Lindsay Ashman.

These are the same folks that see Ben on occasion; he gets the same respect and response. I know the reason too: there is no fear of things that most people would label "not normal." Instead there is an appreciation for the courage and energy it takes to step out into the world just to say "this is me - I'm having fun, how about you?" I've known this connection for three years now and it all boils down to the artist and crafters' appreciation of creativity.

Every one of us has made the decision to unveil ourselves to the public in some form, way, or fashion. We create and let the public decide if the product is acceptable or not. The things we produce won't be carried into the afterlife (fortunately) but the way we choose how to deal with exceptional folks, special needs individuals, or people with challenges just trying to live life to its fullest have a life-changing opinion. Do you encourage and affirm that person or do you alienate that human being for being different?

I'm very proud of my artisan friends for appreciating the nature of Ben and Lindsay. They are both incredible individuals that deserve accolades. But they are also our friends, neighbors, church members, fellow shoppers, travelers of the Highway of Life. Their choice of roads was essentially made made for them. What is your choice?

3 comments:

edgyartist said...

what a nice post and what a great picture of both of you! I sure hope i get to meet Lindsay sometime soon, sounds and looks like she's a maaaahvelous person to be around!

Gretchen said...

Love the photo--Lindsay seems to be a wonderful person--I'm so glad you got to meet her.

Kyla said...

She is adorable! She looks like she might be close to my age? I love that she proved you wrong. LOL.