It’s the end of July, and tourist season is well upon us here in Oregon, land of hiking, windsurfing, and organic farms open for tours, among numerous other attractions. Contrary to popular belief, Oregon does have a perfectly respectable summer; it’s been sunny and in the 80s to 90s for much of the past month (with a couple of brief exceptions) and appears to want to stay that way for the next several days at least. You know when the last time I hiked before yesterday was? May. So much for my attempt to go hiking at least once a week.
But there’s been good reason for that. I’ve had an event I was vending at or otherwise working at every weekend for the past month. While I do a fair bit of online business, I really love meeting people face to face in my booth. (Well, okay, except for that one guy who tried starting an argument over hide tanning methods and wouldn’t take “This conversation is over” for an answer–that wasn’t so much fun.) But vending is a lot of work, especially as I’ve created more and more artwork, and acquired more display apparatus to show it off to better effect in a ten by ten (or sometimes smaller) spot. So vending essentially involved loading up my little Corolla and its roof rack full to bursting, getting it where it’s going, offloading and setting everything up, one or more days glued to the booth, and then undoing one’s setup work and packing it all home again. It’s enough to make me want a Looney-Tunes-style suitcase that I can just open up and everything pops out and lands in place, perfectly. The work is worth it most of the time, and even while I work I get to see people I don’t really get to spend much time with otherwise, and usually have good people-watching opportunities as well.
But I am quite glad to be home. I packed up from my last event Monday, went hiking at Eagle Creek with a couple of out of town friends yesterday, and today I’m carefully easing my way back into my routine. There’s plenty to do; I haven’t written a blog post in a couple of weeks, both gardens need weeding, and the apartment is a disaster area strewn with the detritus of four major events involving both me and my partner over the past month. Bills need to be paid, errands run, dishes cleaned, and the scrub jays have been complaining that the bird feeder has been empty for hours. I have artwork left over from event preparation that needs to go online, and in a few days I’ll need to get the rewards for my patrons on Patreon prepared and sent out.
But it’s a mess of problems I’m happy to come home to. There’s a rhythm to home that I love. It’s the green of bean vines outside the porch door, and the sound of the rock tumbler churning away at the latest batch of stones. It’s running random art supplies over to SCRAP for donation, and getting my hands in the dirt to pull weeds that have had growth spurts in my absence. It’s waking up with an idea for a blog post in my head, and walking downstairs to get the mail. I’ve missed being in my home, be it ever so currently cluttered, and as much as I love seeing my festi folk and traveling to favorite sites, I’m glad to be back in my own space now.