How nice to reminisce on this white snowy monochrome day, on the glorious autumn colors and red earth, and the burbling of rushing water down by the creek. For years one of my favorite drawing/camping spots was down a red dirt road on the other side of the mountain. I’d never known there was a creek at the end of it until my sister and I walked the road last fall. I was surprised and delighted when we reached a stream, and that despite bumps and rocks, twists and turns, Aphrodite would be able to make it down the road. And there was even a lovely flat spot to park and camp.
The first time I camped there, the cottonwoods were still a bright green. I kept seeing new drawings I wanted to do as the shadows crept across the scrubland backed by siena red cliffs. On that trip though, someone took my camping table and chair when I was out exploring. So this next time I decided to stay put and not investigate the fall color elsewhere. I’m now grateful to the thief for giving me such a lovely, long, and peaceful day in one place. It was mid September and the leaves had started to turn. The combination of the green and yellow leaves with the gray blue-green of Russian olive and the red rock and pink-orange sand under the blue blue sky was breathtaking. Sophy snoozed while I enjoyed drawing by the running water. The day stretched on luxuriously.
Such a wealth of visual wonders kept changing as the day progressed. There’s an old fence there that I want to get get back to. Time has caused some posts to lean, some to drop, some to turn silver and others black-brown. It has changed spaces and angles. From man made and functional, nature has created yet one more splendid piece of art.
Sophy, my travel and painting companion of many years, is an old dog now. She’s always loved the extended dog bed I made in Aphrodite’s front passenger seat with plywood and foam. She squeezes through the two front seats to her bed as soon as I reach for my pastels. There’s a console between the seats with round holes for coffee and a big square one for pens etc. This trip she stumbled and caught her leg in one of the indentations and became leery of her beloved bed. I helped her in in the evening, saddened by yet one more limitation for her. But in the morning, lying on my bunk, I had a brain wave. I filled all the holes with dirt. And Tada! Sophy was able to come and go unassisted, though Aphrodite’s rug is turning red.
The next day turned overcast, so my unfinished pastels were not to be completed on that trip. I would need to return soon. Yipeee!