Today I went to the Rio Grande County Museum in Del Norte to see my friend Louise and to pick up my “inheritance.” Her husband, Alex, whom I had only known in the final 3 or 4 years of his life and during some of the most rapid deterioration he experienced from Alzheimers died on the last day of July. He was a painter, a climber, a wood-worker, a traveler and a nature lover as well as a father and grandfather and lifelong partner to Louise who is a remarkable woman.
I liked what I got to know of him. He had wonderful stories, coherent explanations for things, passion for some of the things I am passionate about and his Alzheimers never interfered with his ability to communicate enough of himself, his life and his story that I couldn’t know him at all. I was sorry I hadn’t met him sooner.
A little while ago Louise asked if I’d like to have Alex’ paints and I went to get them today. It’s a treasure trove in a wonderful old Plano Tackle Box filled with really excellent acrylic paint, new brushes, many other wonderful artist’s tools. I’m so grateful that she thought of me.
As I put the box away in its new home and added some of the brushes to my “bouquet” so I can use them, I looked around my studio. It’s filled with wonderful people; in itself it’s a kind of legacy. My fantastic easel came my way because a local artist died and her executor was scrambling to empty the artist’s house in Crestone and get it on the market. I inherited my much loved life-long friend Sally’s oil paints. I have brushes given me by my dear friend Michael who can no longer see. My most often used tools — my Caran D’Ache watercolor pencils — are a gift from my friend Pietro in 1997 when he was still alive and I was visiting Zürich for Christmas. I store my oil paints in a wooden box made by my Uncle Hank for my Aunt Jo sometime in the 80s. ❤
There is some immortality for all those people in everything I do and the back room in this house I moved into not quite 7 years ago holds tremendous history now — and potential.
As I drove home I heard this song on my car radio. It’s a song I love, and I have never heard it played on my radio — car or home — before. I thought it was cool. It seemed to fit.