I was paying our restaurant bill, inserting my credit card into the POS machine, with the waitress waiting patiently at the side. I started some small talk with her while waiting for the POS machine to go through it’s machine process. I live in a university city, so the first question that came to mind was, “Are you a student” . The answer was a smiling “No”. I then said, “Is this your full time job” and the answer was a smiling “Yes”. Absorbing this information, I further queried “What is it you like to do when you are not waitressing”. She hesitated a moment before replying, “I like to draw and paint”. We entered into a conversation and she further explained that she had started an artist’s evening in the restaurant. People would gather in the restaurant for a meal, share ideas and then create their works of art around the evenings theme.
I mentioned that I had been thinking of having a mural painted on my basement wall. I have some knights on tables in the basement and wooden training swords hanging on the wall and thought it would be nice to enhance this with a mural of a castle. I explained that my vision was a castle on a hill, with a stream nearby and some trees and flowers. Would she be interested in taking on this project. Her word’s came out in a confused rush, “I’m really not that good, I’ve only painted on 8.5′ x 11″ canvass, I couldn’t possibly do it justice. I really don’t think I can do it, sorry”. We ended up exchanging email addresses, because, I had talked her into at least letting me send her a photo of the basement wall so she would have an idea of the dimensions. It took two months of back and forth before she eventually agreed to take on the project. I enquired how much she would charge for the project and she replied, ” I couldn’t possibly ask for money, thank you for allowing me to express myself on a larger canvass”. I gave her money to purchase all the supplies she needed to complete the project and she was very happy with that arrangement. She worked at her art for about four hours a week over a couple of months and the results can be seen above. She shared that she had really enjoyed the project and it had expanded her horizons as to what was possible. Soon after she was called away to a family emergency and we lost touch.
The above is a print hanging in my basement. Christ of St. John of the Cross by Salvador Dali (1904-1989).
One dark night,
Fired with love’s urgent longings
I went out unseen,
My house being now all stilled;
( a song of the soul’s happiness in passing through the dark night)
Rose Meditative by Salvador Dali hanging on the wall in my basement.
Blue Roses by Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936)
Roses red and roses white
Plucked I for my love’s delight.
She would none of all my posies–
Bade me gather her blue roses.
Half the world I wandered through,
Seeking where such flowers grew.
Half the world unto my quest
Answered me with laugh and jest.
Home I came at wintertide,
But my silly love had died
Seeking with her latest breath
Roses from the arms of Death.
It may be beyond the grave
She shall find what she would have.
Mine was but an idle quest–
Roses white and red are best!