There are days when time doesn’t move in a linear fashion.  Instead the day is comprised of special, collective moments, time traveling across decades as if no time has passed at all.

Great Grandfather Carter's Pocket Watch

The day began by drawing my great grandfather’s pocket watch made by the Elgin National Watch Company.  According to the beautiful timepiece it has been 2:45 for more than sixty years.

Next stop, the Mac NJ meeting at Voorhees High School … it was my first time joining the group.  Upon hearing my name, one woman turned to me and asked “Are you the Chris Carter who makes those beautiful cards? I buy them in Califon!”  I smiled and told her I stopped making them seven years ago.

Next stop, Meet the Artist Reception at 1275 Gallery and Studio in Fairfield, NJ, an area totally unfamiliar to me. I’m not great at gallery opening small talk with total strangers.  I wondered how I would survive the three hour time slot in a room of unfamiliar faces.  I still didn’t believe that a relatively new friend of mine would make the hour long trek to the gallery on a snowy day.  Seeing his face across the room warmed my heart, gratitude pulsed through my veins.  One should never stop making new friends!  Just as Frank bid adieu, another familiar face walked through the door, Sue Smith.  What a wonder she is!  I let her roam while I chatted with a woman with questions about one of my paintings. After a bit I checked on Sue and glanced at the clock.  5 pm already! How was that possible?  it wasn’t ….. the clock was high on the wall, too high to re-set when the time changed in October. 4 pm… an hour to go.  Hmmmm.

As the crowd thinned the time warp began.  I turned toward a group who had just walked in the door.  How cruel my brain is to think that I am looking at my dear friends Wayne and Dolly whose contact information I lost.  I have a note on my desk to drive to a mutual friend’s house to retrieve their phone number.  It must be because they’ve been on my mind all week long that I’m imagining they’re standing in front of me. It’s been at least five years since our paths have crossed.

Thirty Years Ago

In the photo above, Wayne is far left, playing mandolin.  Dolly is playing stand up bass, the kid’s dad is playing banjo and I’m playing fiddle.

Our eyes met and time melted.  My brain was not playing tricks on me.  In this distant, unknown gallery, friends gathered, old and new.  It’s a bit like showing up at my easel each morning….. If I don’t show up, I am sure that nothing will happen.  When I do show up…… I am often delightfully rewarded.

Drawing:  drawn first with fountain pen followed by watercolor.

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