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Monday, August 16

chautauqua crafts alliance show

This is the one I pin my season on. It is the envelope I open with shaky fingers. Because a "no" means my best show is off the schedule and I need to find 2 to fill the gap. I also love the thing. Stellar committee, beautiful grounds, cello music in the air. It's not just the sales.

So, this year I was wait-listed much to my disappointment, but then I was called in for August, much to my hooray. Since I had virtually no shows for a full month prior, this was a much needed infusion of funds. I hoped for the best.

As it turned out, it was not the best, but it was pretty darn good. I got the last of my nagging obligations taken care of and put away a little bit for our upcoming road trip. The next 2 shows need to be good or we will be traveling with an air mattress in the back of the van!

The committee that runs this show is the best I've ever seen. They are everywhere, wearing bright red cobbler aprons, from load in to load out, helping, checking, chatting, offering. Trust me, you don't get that very often.

We were neighbors with a slightly older couple that loves Fox news but we got along anyway. We had a couple of political debates, but they were good ones. Passionate but respectful. When we left, I hugged the husband and he told me I was the nicest Liberal he ever met. Heh

Across from us, a guy who used to be one of my brother's best friends. They drifted apart, but we had fun reminiscing and we traded some of my widgets for a great wooden train set. As we were packing up, he came over with yet another car...a passenger car with little people in it...and said he thought the train needed it. He had already thrown in an extra. Our little Kylin is going to love it. His 3rd birthday happens while we are visiting next month.

Spending the weekend on the grounds means you are experiencing the music and dance from the ampitheater every time you take a short stroll for the "facilities". People are playing cellos on the lawn behind you. A big difference from the street fairs we usually do, with their porta potties and kettle corn. Not that I don't enjoy those, too. Well, except for the porta potty thing, but the grace of this show cannot be overstated.

I met a sweet lady from Virginia who came in to buy a card she had seen earlier and it was gone. We got to talking and it was one of those odd but lovely things that happens when you just connect with someone. I know she felt it too because she gave me a long, hard hug when she left. I promised to send her the card as a gift.

We spent Friday night in a cheapy "lodge" that exists mostly for fishermen. During the season, accommodations are very pricey, so we deal with lumpy beds and a kitchenette with mismatched plates and cups and glasses. A coffee pot with no filters. Bath towels the size of credit cards. Saturday night we went home for the night so I could restock. The show doesn't start until noon on Sunday, so there was time for the hour commute. It felt good to have more things on the shelves.

And now on to the last 2 shows of Summer.


1 comment:

roller coaster teacher said...

Pat, that sounds truly lovely! I'm somewhat familiar with the grounds and am very sorry I missed my one opportunity to visit for a day when poet Billy Collins was a speaker, back in late July :( But I enjoyed reading this post and thinking about your great experience there.