Kilns and Flights and Preference for Empty Space

Yesterday, I went to the sculpture studio early and spent a short while working on a bust that’s in the same visual style as many of my masks; odd and alien. For many reasons, not the least of which was that I needed to drive to pick up my wife at the airport later, I left and did various errands. As I was engaged in my errands, I daydreamed about how nice it would be if I did not have to drive twenty-five minutes one-way to deal with sculpture-related tasks. If only I had a kiln, I thought to myself. That thought was fleeting, though, as I calculated when I’d have to leave to get to the airport at just the right time to meet my wife, who was returning from a brief trip to Charleston, South Carolina. While I was calculating time and distance in my travel plans, my wife texted to say she was on the way to the airport, quite early, because the Hurricane Matthew evacuations already underway were creating traffic issues; she had no idea how long it would take to get to the airport.

After receiving her text message, kiln-buying opportunities started flooding in. First, a woman called and said Nancy told her I might know where she could find a used kiln. Until I mentioned the call to my wife last night, I did not know Nancy’s identity; my wife knew, because she had told Nancy of my interest in buying a kiln. I told the caller I did not know of any for sale, but that I was in the market to buy one. She said she has one for sale; someone traded it to her for some china dishes, but she wanted a jewelry kiln, not a large one.  I know little else, except that I will go look at the kiln this morning. The other opportunity came in the form of a phone call from a skilled potter who works part-time at the college where I take sculpture classes. I had written on a chalk board in the studio that I would like to buy a kiln. The second caller asked if I had found one. Inasmuch as I had not, I told her as much and she went on to explain that she knew of a woman who has a good one for sale at a price that represents good value. So, I called the woman and learned, during the course of our conversation, that we had been in the same class a year or so ago. Due to scheduling issues, I won’t be able to go take a look at the second kiln until a week from Friday.

Jammed roads led to the airport back in Charleston. My wife’s overbooked flight to Atlanta had a very long waiting list. The airport was clogged with travelers including many vacationers attempting to flee the oncoming storm. My wife spent considerable time at the airport, boarding pass safely in hand, waiting for the on-time flight.

Once we returned home, I looked up on the walls where most of my masks once hung. We took them down so I could paint the wall. I painted that one wall, but still have others to do. But, what’s important is that, with the new paint, we decided we really preferred the wall empty. So that leads me to question whether I really want to buy a kiln, because I may not want to make more masks if I have no place to display them.

What an odd quandary. Too many masks and not enough available wall.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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