Category Archives: road trip

my invention for electric cars

A couple days ago I saw this beautiful new Cadillac. It looks futuristic. This might not be the exact model I saw on the street but close enough. I looked them up and since I’m not 100% sure of the model I can’t be sure of the price but I think they are over $38,000. I want one. Maybe some day. (sigh)

The main thing that would stop me from buying an electric car is that the charge only lasts for a couple hundred miles and then you have to stop and wait for a half hour to charge it. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong on these things. And the car knows where the places are to charge the battery but they need to make a lot more charging places before I’d take a road trip in an electric car.

This is my invention. If you know how to make it you can take my idea, Cadillac. We need cars that can gather wind power as we’re driving to keep the battery charged so I put a pinwheel on top of the car. You figure out how to rig it up.

Did I just ruin the sleek lines of this beautiful machine with a pinwheel?

Energy should be free since it’s so extremely abundant in nature. I know the cost is going up at this point in time but someone will make an invention like this that will pay for itself then energy will be free.

free literature from Maine

When I travel I like to pick up the free papers in stores and the places I visit. It’s raining again today and I’m hanging around Portland another night so I found some interesting shops. The hotel gives you a map and I googled directions but was lost as hell and drove around in a circle and stopped in a store and asked a guy who told me where to turn. I wanted to go to the lighthouses but decided not to.

Portland is supposed to be one of the best cities in the country to retire in.

Now I’ll have to come back to Maine so I can do the dance through Maine’s best cemeteries!! OMG!! I can’t wait!

I still didn’t find my lobster roll but I’ve been searching. Yesterday it was way too crowded at the waterfront restaurants.

I signed up for Plein air camp @ Acadia!!

I had a great time at the Ghost Ranch art camp a few years ago and was waiting for the pandemic to end to go on another art adventure. This is a place I saw briefly years ago and always wanted to go back. The camp is put on by Streamline Publishing, the company that publishes Plein Air Magazine.

There’s no pressure, no contest or prizes, no classes, just do your own thing, no drama. The food was great at the Ghost Ranch so it will probably be good in Maine too. It’s included in the price. $1500 for a week.

It’s in Oct. I can’t wait!!

scouting for plein air inspiration

bird watcher’s paradise

The Marsh Causeway in North Carolina is a real pretty drive not too far from Virginia Beach. I knew Mackay Island Wildlife Preserve was just across the state line but didn’t know how to get there. When I was at Back Bay I saw a sign showing where the boat launches are in the area and a couple days ago I drove down Princess Ann Rd. looking for them and said, to myself,” where in the hell am I ?” because I was so far out in the boonies, but it’s still Virginia Beach. In fact Virginia Beach is huge and mostly agricultural south of the city. It goes all the way to the state line. That part is called Pungo. Then you find yourself on the Marsh Causeway going into Knotts Island.

Mackay Island from an overlook
It’s a huge marsh, looks a lot like Back Bay and False Cape

It was cloudy, cool and windy, which was nice because the wind kept the bugs down. A couple days ago I rode my bike in Back Bay and before I left the parking lot I sprayed with DEET but didn’t really overdo the spray and got a bad bite on my elbow!

gravel road and canal

It’s flat as a pancake. They have the road blocked after you get a mile or so into Mackay but I saw a car from Ohio parked there and no people, so I guess it’s ok to walk or bike, just not drive. I might go back another time and check out that part of the road.

a view of the bay from the causeway
a little chop on the water

This is a view of the bay from the causeway at a bridge.

Probably not a great place to sketch right there by the side of the road.

Anyway, I’m glad I finally found my way to Mackay Island and Knott’s Island. I saw some boat launches and canoe launches.

A couple days ago I found a real picturesque canoe launch on Muddy Creek Rd. in Virginia Beach, not too far down the road but out in the country. There was a broken boat covered with mud and half sunk down in the mud. That would make an interesting subject but it’s also next to the road, but the road doesn’t have much traffic. So, I don’t know, I might go back to that one.

Scouting for good places to draw in plein air is something I have to do and exploring around here is important too. I don’t always sketch, a lot of times I just look around.

a car like this knows the story of my life

1972 TR6

Last night I dreamt I saw the car. It belonged to my best friend, Dick Clayman of York PA who died in 2001. He left the car to me and I kept it for years but eventually sold it because keeping an antique car running can be too expensive.

The car was the symbol of our friendship. He was an old man, I was a young chick. He talked constantly but he was trying to impart his wisdom to me since he and his wife didn’t have any kids. They kind of adopted me. His wife was very kind. They had me over to eat every day when I was in art school. They were my neighbors. Dick drove me all around PA. MD. and VA. in the TR6. We enjoyed each others company. He was an opera singer, a tenor, and he often sang arias while we were driving around in the country with the top down. La Boheme was his favorite. He’d sing in Italian then ask me if I knew what it meant. I didn’t but he told me what the words meant. He brainwashed me on how to be an artist. He taught me more than anyone else. That’s where I got my attitude. (from a tenor)

In my dream, I was going to the mall with another friend and when I saw the car I ran back inside looking for Dick. He was in the bathroom. I called in, “Can I come in, Dick?” He said, ” Wait a minute.”.

I guess I was in the land of the dead in my dream and he didn’t want me to go in too soon.

I’m not afraid of dying. There’s a chance I could see Dick again. I might live a long time. My Mom’s 98 but she has dementia now and is being well taken care of in a luxurious old folks home. She didn’t want me to live with her and take care of her. Now I know it would have been too hard for me to do that. She needs professional care givers. Anyway, I hope I don’t live to be 98 because I won’t be able to drive. And I love driving thanks to Dick.

This is just a little snippet of my weird life. It was always weird and I thought of starting to write it down when I knew Dick but he told me not to. He said. “That path is yours alone and it might not be a good idea to write it down.” It’s for me to learn from and no one else will get the lessons from it. So this is all I’m writing.

He’s dead 20 years now. I had a lot of other friends but none like Dick.

They’re trying to lure me to Texas

I don’t know if I’d get accepted. I’d be up against real plein air professionals. Their art pays the bills.

I had a great time at Fall Color Week at the Ghost Ranch in 2019. This Texas thing is a contest and I’m not real hot on competitions . The Ghost Ranch was like art camp for 1 week, not a contest. It was beautiful and they fed us well. Both events are from the Plein Air magazine.

When plein air contests got popular maybe 15 years ago or something like that, I entered when they came to Richmond but didn’t get in. I never heard why. And back in those days I entered the contests this magazine has but I never even heard from them if they received my entry which was a little discouraging to keep on entering. I got my daughter to help me with the entries to be sure it wouldn’t get hung up on some filing error. So, I don’t know why I never heard back.

I said I wasn’t going to enter anymore but this could be another great adventure like the Ghost Ranch. This Texas thing would be an expensive vacation but fun. I like the part about the artists can stay at the ranches before the event starts. At least I’d have time to decide where to paint.

I heard that they stamp the back of your blank canvases at the start so no-one can have more time to paint than the others. I’m kinda slow but might be able to finish something in a week if I work on it every day.

Should I enter? If I send them my swamp painting in the entry they might reject me because they’ll see it took me a long time to paint it and that’s against their preferred style, but the swamp painting is one of my favorites.

I might trade the Taurus for a Bronco if I take this trip. I need more clearance on dirt roads. I like my Fords. They have the most comfortable seats and they’re strong cars.

the Peachoid / I 85 at Gaffney South Carolina

Peachoid-gaffney

not my photo.

It’s a water tower. Interesting info that was new to me has recently been disclosed by my daughter.

I’m planning an art project which will be a pastel still life featuring representations of celestial bodies and I was talking to her about how to represent the moon.

I drove past this a lot of times on my way to Atlanta, GA. and never realized, people call it the Moon over Gaffney. It’s funny. Millenials  love to use emojis  and the peach emoji represents a butt. A butt represents the moon. So people driving past the giant peach thought of a giant butt. It has been repainted.

One time I took Amtrak to Texas when my sister lived there and as the train was speeding through Georgia and I was staring out the window, I saw a bunch of bare butts on the hill next to the tracks. Some kids were “mooning” the train. I’ll never forget it. I was traveling alone and sitting there cracking up. I stood up to see if anyone else in my train car saw the kids mooning the train but no one else was laughing, so maybe they didn’t see the moons. We passed it so fast.

The giant peach goes to show how public art can mean different things to different people. I decided to draw a peach in my still life. Not every one will get the connection.

This project might take some time. It’s too hot outside for me to enjoy drawing in plein air. I’m only now in the planning stage of my next art project, and I like taking my sweet time doing art, which is not the modern way of doing art. The modern way is to make it look spontaneous. I refuse to conform to that nonsensical attitude. I’ll show my progress on the still life as soon as I get something down on paper. Meanwhile, here’s an inspiration, the giant peach / moon.

the Cow is OK / pastel

IMG_2554

Dang, This is hard to see. My lap top is acting all crazy, still working but the flashing horizontal lines are on it. I think dirt got between the display and the keyboard. It might go away. It did before.

This is another old favorite that did not get stolen. The skull is a souvenir from my 1st solo adventure driving across country in 2002. I drove rt.66 from Springfield MO. to Santa Monica. At Flag Staff I took a detour to go to the Grand Canyon for one night. I bought a bag of carrots in Flagstaff because I was hoping to get on the mule ride but they were all booked up so I went back to 66 and headed West. In Arizona I was looking for wild burros but didn’t see any until I got to Kingman. The burros were all there and smelled the carrots in my car. They had their snotty faces all over my car before I could park it. I barely got out of the car and they mobbed me for the carrots. It was a scream! Then I shopped and bought this skull. It rode on my backseat the rest of the trip because it was too big to fit in the trunk.

When I got home I drew the skull about 6 times in different combinations of pastel colors.

Then I saw a funny article in the weird news section of a magazine I was reading. The story goes like this:

In Fla. there was a flood and a cow was just standing there in the water. Drivers were slowing down to look at the cow and it caused a traffic jam. So many people were calling 911 to rescue the cow that they contacted the farmer who told them the cow is ok. Then DOT took a big sign out there and put it by the side of the road saying, “The cow is ok”. Then the cow moved on and the sign was still there causing a traffic jam because people were looking for the cow.

My daughter, Sarah and I got on a laughing jag over the story. She insisted I call my skull drawings the cow is ok.

Now I’m having a little problem with my computer. I think it might fix itself because it did before. If I miss something don’t worry about me. I’m in a hotel with a good view. I’d like to ride out the crazy right here. I don’t know.

 

existential meme / stolen from cyanide and happiness

IMG_0721

I’m going out for a long drive today and tomorrow. My daughter’s going along with me to bring my Mom to VA from PA. Then she’s taking Mom home after  xmas and I’m staying home. I did that drive alone for so many years then stopped a few years ago. Now Sarah wants to make the drive and asked me if I want to go along this year, so I’ll drive the first half of it. Traffic will be heavy. Weather ok.

Enjoy your holidays, friends! ttyl