It just seems as if I should be waking up soon, but the dream continues… I never thought this coronavirus would overtake our country and the world. I thought the cases would be caught and isolated and things would go on as they were.
How wrong could I be?
I think back to the gallery shows that I enjoyed and the community that shared the love of art and it has vanished. Artists are in their homes and lucky to be creating art in their own studios.
The opening in January in NorthCountryARTS’ 2nd Gloor Gallery in Glens Falls, New York, that showed the work of fiber artist and friend Kris Gregson Moss and my own Batik paintings was such a great time. I am grateful I had that chance to show my batik this year and mingle with artists I do not often see. Now shops and galleries are closed and I am glad to have my art in my Etsy shop.
I have to confess.
My husband and I are isolating at home with our three cats, Star the pony, and Vanilla the llama. I miss friends and yoga class, the gym, and my sessions with Kate Austin-Avon with her helpful guidance and enthusiasm, but after our days on the farm it is not such a huge adjustment for me and I do get to create my art.
On the farm, we rarely went away and our routine became a ritual of caring for our animals day in and day out. We had a dairy farm and cows to milk twice a day. There was almost a monastic element to it with the bare necessities for ourselves.
Clothing was worn to shreds and got covered with poop. Trips to anywhere were rare and Dick and I occasionally visited farm machinery repair shops for parts and maybe one or two times a month I made a trip to the grocery store. I liked to clean up before going, but still remember the day I had no choice but to go as-is and a little boy remarked to his mom, “Something stinks” — and it was me!
Jaka was a little girl when we married and she wanted to help from the first. She saw us working and always contributed what she could. We had so many good times with her. She learned to care for animals and showed her own Jersey calves and cows and later helped with harvests. Now she is a grown woman and has given us three beautiful grandchildren, but they live near Boston and are isolating as well, l so we have not seen them.
I feel a connection to people in the ages past, and the struggles humanity has gone through are so many. The past is full of violence, plagues, oppression and unspeakable things have rained down on humans and animals. Our problems with the virus are not new to the world, but they are to us. We have not seen anything like this before.
We will rise again. All must sacrifice for now and we can go back to the earth, respect it, and hopefully, we can grow some of our own food. It reminds me of the Victory Gardens of old. I feel sadness for those who can not do this. So many are suffering tremendously.
So I go out to care for my animals, make our supper from scratch, plant more seeds for our small garden, and take in all the beauty around me. It feels like a trip back in time for me…