Thursday, April 23, 2020

A Casualty of the Pandemic

I just learned that Hallowell Clay Works, one of the studios I taught at pre-pandemic, is closing its doors. I imagine this is only one of many businesses that will shut down as a result of Covid-19, and I know people have lost far more precious things, but I am feeling it all the same.

Like all the best teaching studios, Hallowell Clay Works is a community. Clay has a really steep learning curve, and having supportive people around you to celebrate your successes - sometimes point out to you your successes! - and sympathize with the failures, helps you over that hump. I've never known anything that can knit a group of strangers into a group of friends faster than a pottery class.

Malley Weber, the proprietor, is a remarkable person: clever, creative, resourceful. This is not the first incarnation Hallowell Clay Works has had and I trust it will not be the last.

This is the first Covid-related change around me that isn't just hitting the pause button; this is the first thing that won't be the same as it was, whenever the crazy is over. Though it has been 5 weeks since we hit pause on our lives here, my head still swims with the speed of it: one day I was excited about all my new accounts & upcoming shows, delighted that I had the perfect number of classes - could basically write my own ticket on that score -and thinking about refinancing my house. The next day all that was over. Some of it didn't know it was over yet, but it was over - it just didn't have to good sense to fall down.

Ugh, this is a bummer of a post, when in fact I have a great deal to be thankful for: my own health, and my family's; I am stuck at home, true, but I have a studio to work in, and a garden, and all the books anyone could want. The money will start to get iffy eventually but we are ok for now.

I hope all of you are coping, staying well and staying safe. Just stay well. Just live. The rest we figure out later.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Bummer but no choice

Surprising exactly no one, yesterday I officially cancelled the 2020 Maine Pottery Tour. It had been obvious for a while that I needed to do it, but I kept hoping for a miracle. I can't tell you how bummed I am about this! 2020 seemed to be gearing up to be the best year yet for the Maine Pottery Tour - we had more studio than ever, and were getting some really great publicity. I was going to be on the radio, on Maine Public's Maine Calling program!

All that went out the window.

This fucking virus. I am 100% on board with the stay-home approach, but that doesn't mean I am not vastly disappointed. It doesn't make sense to be angry at a microbe - it's just doing what it does. It's like being angry at the weather. But emotions don't always make sense, so yes, I am angry at corona. Angry, and worried, and downright scared.

I got my jury results from the Saint Louis Art Fair - I was actually kind of relieved to get a rejection, as I feel like an acceptance into such a great show might have jinxed the nation, causing the pandemic to extend all the way to September. But I was rejected, so HEY UNIVERSE, YOU CAN QUIT WITH THE COVID-19 NOW.

Anyway. I hope all of you are staying home & staying safe.