Friday, May 27, 2011

A Holiday Weekend Reminder From Splitty The Maul....

"MY BEER KOOZY CAN KICK YOUR BEER KOOZY'S ASS!!!!!!!!!!" Splitty, that's not the "Holiday Weekend Reminder" I had in mind.

"Take Two!!!"


No, no, no, no, NO!!!!!!! Sheesh Splitty, c'mon, get serious.

"Take Three!!!!"



Okay Splitty, go take a break and come see me when you get back.

I'm not sure what's going on with Splitty folks. He doesn't have much body fat so a beer or two sort of hits him hard.

Fortunately, he's not driving today as we head out to the beach for the weekend.

Hold on folks, Splitty's back.

Splitty, you're supposed to be doing a "Public Service Announcement" about drinking and driving. Are you drunk?


Geez Splitty, remember what happened the last time you got drunk?

"NOPE!!!!!!!" *HIC*



Splitty, we really have to get moving here. I have to cut the grass, we have to pack, and you STILL haven't finished the only thing you're required to do this weekend.

Now cut the crap and get it done.

"Taaaakeeee Four!!!!!"


Good work Splitty, now close the deal.........

".....AND REMEMBER FOLKS......."



That's a wrap.

Good work Splitty. Go pack your bags, we're off to the Shore.

All y'all be careful this weekend. I don't have any friends I can live without.

Best wishes to the Downtown gang in Memphis. Here's to hoping it'll be the best "Tube Top Month" ever!

Until the next time, all y'all take care of yourselves.

Air Traffic Mike, ret.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Arts In Bloom 2011, Part Two

Damn, I'm way behind.

It's Thursday and I'm just getting around to updating you folks on last Sunday.

Guess I'll just have to go into the "Reader's Digest" mode and shorten things up.

We left out around 10:00 am and grabbed a quick breakfast at a local restaurant. That gave us the chance to sort of plan out our day.

There was a nice concentration of artists in a little river township called Elsinboro, so we made that our first stop.

For some reason my camera stayed in my pocket while we were at the first stop. I don't remember why. The house/studio hosting a trio of artists was a beautiful place right on the river. The owner/artist was extremely talented in sculpting. There was also a painter's and a photographer's works on display.

We really enjoyed it, but I must not have been awake enough to fire up the camera.

On our way to the next stop, we ran across a fellow who collected, bought and sold art. He had his place open if you wanted to buy some other folk's art, but he was not officially a part of the "Arts In Bloom" tour.

Despite that, I felt obliged to take a picture at his place. He was working on an old Dodge pickup truck.

1939 Dodge pickup truck.

We continued on our way to the next stop. There were two artists showing their wares. We saw a nice little painting that we knew matched a friend's tastes in style and color.

We purchased that immediately.

But, once again, my camera stayed in my pocket.

Sometimes waking up is hard to do.

My camera woke up while en route to our next stop, Salem.

Over the years Salem has attempted to revive its Main Street area. Like in so many small towns, it is an ongoing challenge with varying degrees of success.

A war memorial placed in one of the renovated areas.

A close up of the base.

A seniors complex built in off Main Street.

More shops along Main Street.

These artists were selling their wares outside of galleries and stores. One lady had some beautiful stone beads for sale. Christine bought a really nice necklace for her sister here.

On the other side of the tents a lady was an art gallery. One of the owners was inside working on an oil painting. I hold painters in high esteem. Working in oils or water colors is easy, doing it well takes talent.

I can make either look like a Kindergarten finger painting in two minutes or less.

Salem has a number of old churches around the downtown area.

One of these days I'm going to make a point to go into all of them and take some pictures for the blog.

I'm a big fan of old church architecture. I'm NOT a big fan of churches that are designed to look like arenas or television studios.

Like the Bellevue Baptist Church in Memphis.

I've been in the place. It's as personal as a rock concert. It left me cold. If I can't see the priest/minister/deacon from where I'm sitting, I'm not interested.

The First Baptist Church. This is much more like it for me.

By this time we had seen the works of about ten different artists. We couldn't really spend much more time riding around. A friend's mother had passed away earlier in the week and the visitation was that night.

Still, there was on more stop we decided to make.

I'm glad we did.

I pointed the AirTrafficMobile back out into Salem County.

We only had a few miles to drive.

A sculptor,Molly Sanger Carpenter has converted an old farmhouse into her studio and residence. Like so many old farmhouses, it has had a number of additions built on over the years.

It made this place one of the more unique buildings I've been in.

The front of part of the structure serves as the gallery and studio. Originally a wooden cabin stood here. One of the later renovations was to replace that with this Victorian building.

Side view of the gallery/studio. They done a nice job of preserving the Victorian features on the building.

The first addition to the cabin was this brick section. With the cabin torn down, this is the oldest part of the structure.

Later additions.

We stepped inside the front door. The old foyer and the parlor were full of various sculptures, including one work in progress.

However, it was this piece that caught our eyes:

Libraries are important to the both of us.

You can see more of Ms. Sanger Carpenter's work here.

It had been a long couple of days.

I was just about "arted out".

We got home in time to rest a bit before the visitation.

I'm not a huge fan of anything associated with funerals but I'm glad we went. I hadn't seen our friend and his family in a very long time.

We've been laying low this week.

Good thing, too.

We're going to be heading out of town for the holiday weekend along with "Billy" and Splitty the Maul.

Mauls dig road trips.

Hope your holiday weekend is safe and happy.

Until the next time, all y'all take care of yourselves.

Air Traffic Mike, ret.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Arts In Bloom 2011, Part One

Like I said, it was quite a busy weekend.

After we stopped at Hudock's Custard Stand for lunch, we hit the road to see what we could see.

After all, it was way too nice out to just sit around the house.

Our first stop was at a private home out in the county. Three artists were displaying and selling their wares.

I must say, the home can only be described as "unique".

The gardens in the back even more so.

The home owners did all the work themselves. I particularly liked the log framed picnic table.

They built the arbor (center of the picture) for their wedding. The water feature is actually a very clever drainage system.

There were three artists on site. Christine had seen the fellow who carves bowls at an art show earlier in the year. I like hand carved bowls. So does Christine. Seeing as how her birthday was coming up (Today, Happy 50th Birthday Ms. Hooks!), we purchased a nice black walnut bowl. The artist, Jason Hemsley, is the young fellow to the left of the picture.

As interesting as this backyard was, the next one was flat out amazing.

It was so large and filled with art pieces, we'd have to call it a day.

Just outside of Alloway lies the Ironstone Sculpture Garden.

Rather than describe every piece in the garden, I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves.

After walking the 4.5 acres of art we were pretty tired.

It had been a long Saturday.

We arrived back at the studio.

It's quite an impressive place, well designed to handle the large pieces of stone and steel used in the sculptures.

Like this huge piece of Pennsylvania stone......

or this large steel structure. It's pretty obvious the hoist attached to the white I-beam by the door gets a lot of use.

We really had a great time.

There was more to see on Sunday.

That will have to be it's own blog.

Until the next time, all y'all take care of yourselves.

Air Traffic Mike, ret.