Summer Art and Play Dates

Summer afternoon – Summer afternoon… the two most beautiful words in the English language.
–Henry James

Art is the only way to run away without leaving home.
–Twyla Tharp

All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.
–Pablo Picasso

All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost; the old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost. From the ashes a fire shall be woken, a light from the shadows shall spring; renewed shall be blade that was broken, the crownless again shall be king.
–J.R.R. Tolkien

I love getting lost. In summer I can do what Julia Cameron calls “artist dates,” wanton wanderings to inspire creativity and cultivate sanity. I can stop racing down a linear path like the March Hare late for the Mad Hatter’s tea party, and thus, avoid going mad myself. And when folks say I’m “slow-walking,” KentuckySpeak for wasting my time, I can tell them to take a hike, preferably down a rabbit hole.

Yesterday I had lunch with the Mad Hatter and the March Hare at The Italian Market. Growing up four months and one street apart, my daughter, Taylor, and niece, Emily, were in Alice together their freshman year of high school. Many-an-audience-member said they stole the show, and I felt again like we were in Wonderland. Like childhood Sunday lunch that lasted all afternoon at Mama Sargeant’s or Torino dinner that went til near midnight at Anna and Antonio’s, we took our sweet time…Limoncello Torte and all.

A few shiny objects later (what my son calls distractions but I call decisions when I get off the clock)… buying lavender and cilantro, book-hunting at McKay’s, snapping pictures of a church in Sylvan Park… we parked in the shade of the Parthenon. At The American Artisan Festival, our original destination, we talked to artists, patted dogs, sipped strawberry lemonade in the shade. I bought an “original” sketch from a boy with his grandmother working the crowd for camp money. He’d traced a crow, either Heckle or Jeckle. The perfect souvenir.

We’d blown off the direct route, “the way a crow flies,” to the park. Like freebirds we picked up bright and shining things along the way…good conversation, laughs, leisure. We met artists who reminded us we are all made in the image of the Great Creator. By honoring their inner children with their work, they invited ours to join and play.


My friend, Cindy David, of Cindy David Designs.

Monica Chantada, another friend modeling one of Cindy’s latest designs.

Vintage bags from Lisa Toland (California)

Beverly Hayden Art

Not much of a games girl, but always loved Monopoly and Operation…The Junk Bunk is cool.

Artwork above by Lisa Norris, the one girl.

Love these by Ynon Mabat (Florida)

Also liked the work of Nicario Jimenez, Brent Sanders and Big World Photo (cause it is).

Cindy McCain

I'm Cindy McCain, Southern Girl Gone Global, who flew from my empty nest to write/teach for three years in Marrakesh, Morocco and the Caribbean. Now back in Nashville, I'm sharing tales, tips, and takeaways from exploring 27 countries and finding treasures in my backyard. My blog offers itineraries, travel/hospitality reviews, and inspiration for letting go of fear, holding onto faith, and finding freedom in roots and wings. Featured in Yahoo!, US News and World Report, Expedia, Orbitz, StyleBlueprint, Named a Top 35 Baby Boomer Blogs 2020-2023 and a Top 50 Travel Blog of 2016.

One thought on “Summer Art and Play Dates

  • June 20, 2011 at 10:46 AM

    Would have loved to have been there with you!!!!!!!!!! Here’s to sippin’ in the shade, Sally


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