Monday, September 24, 2012

Just Checking In

It has been two weeks since I examined that zone where the rubber meets the road or in my case where the cyclist meets the road. Thank goodness for helmets or I would be dealing with a concussion or worse instead of just being banged up. I appreciate all the good wishes you have sent and believe that they are speeding my recovery. I have had a couple more doctor visits and things seem to be knitting pretty well. I did drop out of what was to be my last outdoor show of the season last week but hey more pots for me! I'll sell them next time.

I spent about 10 days in the fog of prescription pain killers alternately napping and watching whatever was on TV. All medications have some side effects and I am glad to put these behind me.I spent too much time in that netherworld that lies between wake and sleep and not knowing which I was in.I felt like doing absolutely nothing. It was what I needed but I really didn't like it. I have just been taking Ibuprofen for the last few days and am feeling much more ambitious. My range of motion has increased and yesterday I even felt up to mowing the front yard. My rib reminds me that it is still broken and my right arm still doesn't reach up like it should but things are improving every day. I can't throw yet but I have been sorting through my shelves and coming up with a lot of donations for empty bowls. I can bathe and dress myself but shaving still hurts so I haven't. I'm starting to look like the wild hairy man from the hills but I know some potters who get by with that look permanently so I'm not too worried about it.

I should be back to my old self in another couple of weeks. In the mean time, thanks again and I'll be back in a week or so.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Ouch !

I'm ok. Monday I wasn't so sure. I had decided to celebrate the beautiful day with a nice motorcycle ride in the country. It was a gorgeous early fall day and the miles flew by. I am a careful and cautious rider but a couple of miles from the house is the steepest curviest hill in the county. I always descend it slowly but it just didn't work this time. Heavy rains last week had washed sand onto the road and as I went around a sharp bend I started to skid. I corrected 3 times and it just started slipping again each time. Rather than hit a guard rail and maybe go down a 200 ft bank I laid her down. Then I was laying in the road with an 800 lb bike on my leg. It took some wiggling but I did manage to get my foot dislodged pull my leg out and stand up. The gasoline that was running down the hill convinced me to turn off the ignition just for good luck.My ribs hurt and my right shoulder had a kink in it but I was basically functional. I flagged down some guys who helped me get upright again. This is not easy when the rubber side is up and the shiny side is pointing down a steep hill but we managed. The bike had a scuff on the fender and a slight bend in the handlebar. I managed to get it started and limped home. After sitting for a while at home, it became apparent that I was not just going to take 2 aspirin and feel better. Tina drove me to the local ER where we spent the next 6 hours getting me poked prodded x rayed, and CT scanned. The verdict is a broken rib (maybe two) a sprained shoulder, and a pneumothorax where the rib nicked my lung a little and a couple of scrapes and bruises. They sent me home about midnight with a handful of vicodin and a referral to a trauma clinic. It could be worse. It does hurt and I may not be able to do my show this weekend or throw for a few weeks but my face is still where I left it and my head isn't broken( thank you helmet). In a few weeks I should be back to normal. I almost said good as new but that ship sailed a long time ago.

Life changes suddenly enjoy the one that you have.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Art Shows

Once again I hit the road and did two shows in one weekend.Saturday I was in Bellevue Ky for Art in the Park and Sunday I was close to home at the Loveland Art show.

Bellevue Ky sits right on the Ohio river and you can watch the boats going up and down. I love this show and I usually do well. They have a very hardworking bunch of volunteers who always seem to have some kind of event going on to promote their redevelopment efforts. They are the nicest folks you could meet anywhere. They know that an Art Show is about getting a crowd in and keeping the vendors happy. They provide generous free drinks, booth sitters, snack packs etc. The booth fee is also very reasonable. They are not wizards and cannot control the weather. Three days out the forecast was for a rainy Saturday. Friday that changed to a rainy morning. When I got to the park about 7:30, it was raining fairly hard but the show must go on. Luckily, this is one show where I can park 10 ft behind the booth so I was able to start with the tent and tables then bring the pottery boxes in a couple at a time and put the empty ones back in the van. By the time we opened, the rain had stopped and the sky was beginning to clear. What happened after that is anyones guess. Even though the show was well promoted, the crowd was very light all day. Judging from the conversations I had with the other potters, most of us did about half what we did last year. It's all part of the vendors life but when I worked for other people, I would have been pissed if I worked hard all week and ended up with half pay in my envelope ( and full deductions taken out). I'm always thankful that I'm retired and don't have to sell to pay the bills. I always marvel at the people who live off talent and tenacity.It takes a lot of courage.

Sunday dawned much brighter and not quite as early for the 20 minute drive to Loveland. The show is in a park and you cannot drive to your booth to unload. This would be a deal breaker for an aging potter with one good ankle except they have a bunch of the greatest high school kids you ever saw. I backed into the loading zone and said I was going to unload then I would need some help. I unloaded and parked the van. When I returned there were six kids in purple shirts who started picking up my stuff ( and there's a bunch of it) and schlepping it across the park.I didn't have to carry one box. The weather was perfect, the crowd came out and stayed out. People bought pots, lotsa pots. Friends came out, some new some that I went to school with 50 years ago. It was a great day. I want to quickly thank Judy Schneider from clay club. Judy comes to almost every show in the area and even though I spend a lot of time picking on her she is always glad to booth sit for a few minutes while I run to the restroom or grab a sandwich. It really helps.

 By closing time, I had several empty boxes Cookie jars, Casseroles ( open and covered ) utility jars, and baking dishes sold well. I had a woman and two grown kids come in . I think the kids were a daughter+ husband. One of the young folk had bought a cereal bowl last month in Yellow Springs 50 miles up the road. they came specifically to get the rest of the shino cereal bowls and a serving bowl to match. Saturday, a woman bought 4 casseroles, one for each grown kid for Christmas. What nice customers to have. I may even have sold a set of 8 plates. The woman loved the shino and iron glazed plates but I did not have 8. She seems serious about coming back. A lot of my sales Sunday were $40 + and I think using the square for credit cards helped. I previously wrote down info and processed on line after the show. This weekend I started swiping with the square and it was much quicker and it gave me instant approval. I think the customers liked it too. For the weekend, about 2/3 of my sales were plastic, one check and the rest cash.That is a big shift to plastic.

At the close of the show, I boxed the pots, struck the tent, and grabbed a bunch of those wonderful kids. I carried one box. Here are a couple of pictures from Sunday including the big yellow jar that was touched by every body who came to the show. I was afraid they were going to rub a hole in it. Thanks for stopping.