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Wednesday, April 9

location, location

So, last year at Allentown, we set up in the wrong spot. It was a lovely spot. Under a tree. And in front of a driveway. We are not totally crazy, the spot had a number on it. 105. My number. Well, it should have been my number except that my number was 015. It is not my place to wonder why a number was painted in front of a driveway or why dyslexia suddenly became part of my life.

Sure enough, 5 minutes into the show, a flotilla of officials with clipboards and walkie-talkies came to stand before me and declare me brain dead. I had to move, they said. This was not a space. I looked down at the bright yellow "105" I looked at the clipboard that said "015". I looked at the cars stranded in the driveway behind me. I sighed.

(whatever you hear about the heavy-handed Allentown officials, know this. They were kind and patient and have a sense of humor.)

I schlepped down to 015, a spot that had no tree. A spot that was near the noisy corner of Allen. I schlepped back and told Russell we were being sent to art show hell and we began to dismantle, even though the folks said we could do it at the end of the day. I knew we would be hot and tired then. And then Russell had an idea. He pointed out that a spot just 2 tents down had gone unclaimed, could we go there? Under the tree? Clipboards were consulted and the OK given. Yes!

We unattached all that had been attached and with neighboring artists each holding a leg of the tent, marched it down 2 spots and set it in place. They helped us drag racks and shelves and the whole thing was done in 10 minutes. HIgh fives all around.

I made sure to note the number of that spot so we could ask for it the next year. It was perfect. On Franklin Street which we love, across from Troop I where there is breakfast in the morning and a row of porta potties tucked into the parking lot. Under a tree. Art show heaven. On the app this year, I gave the number, described the area, asked to be near Virginia, not Allen, etc, etc. I was so sure....

The envelope comes. It is thick, a good sign. When I open it, a red ribbon falls out. "congratulations" . Perfect so far. I pull out the card with my space number. 017. What?? No! I know that 017, Mister, and you are no 107! Expletives ensue. We live in the neighborhood, we go to check it out. (the painted numbers from the art festival are a permanent part of the landscape).

Just what I remembered. No tree. Close to Allen. Broken curb to encourage law suits. Slanted sidewalk that will make my tall artist chair feel like a ride at Darien Lake. Grumbling happens. Acceptance follows. We will make the most of it. That's what you do. No tree? Bring your big umbrella. Hole in the street? Put down a rug. We will be near Cafe 59, a familiar haunt for us. A place with good food and better coffee. There is a parking lot we can use near the spot. I will try not to set up in front of the entrance.

It's all good.

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