This past month I have been so totally absorbed in all manner of things that I just haven’t found the time or the inclination to write. I had my last day of selling in Almyrida Bay on October 15th and the weather that day was fine, sunny and hot. I have never worked the beach as late as this, but there were still tourists around and they were still buying, so I sold five pictures that final day. This year has definitely been the best selling season I have ever had and I am more than thrilled with the continuing success in sales of my unique style of contemporary art. I am also becoming more and more recognized for my seashell mosaics and collages. As happens from time to time during the summer months, I have tourists telling me they found and read this blog and then came to visit me!
Although the main selling months are over I have now started the winter chapter of building up my stock again and sourcing all the seashells I can’t find on Crete. Sourcing the seashells takes an enormous amount of my time in research, emails and phone calls to various suppliers around the world – not to mention the shipping logistics!. I think I have managed to sort out the buying side but still have lots of beachcombing around Crete to do. Also I still have to re-stock on around 400 blank canvases of all sizes which I usually purchase each year.
However, for the past two weeks my work has had to be placed on the back burner because life threw one of those unexpected crises at me. Much of my time and thoughts have been devoted to family issues and although I am not prepared to go into any details, suffice it to say that I have been well and truly engrossed and distracted.
Whilst I have had these personal matters going on, my laptop was having a major crisis of its own. This has also been a massive worry to me for the last ten days and still the problems are not fully sorted. There couldn’t have been a worse time for me to lose access to my PC. As I have probably mentioned before – My PC is everything to me in terms of contact with my family. Skype is especially valuable and email access is essential to my business in all sorts of ways.
I took my laptop in for the necessary repairs last Monday morning and only got it back on Friday night. Luckily Nick was able to lend me his PC for the five days I was without mine. He doesn’t have internet access where he lives and is quite content with just his iphone. This has been such a blessing because I was able to access all my emails and add my sister’s Skype contact to Nick’s account. Basically, my PC has had a total inside clean, windows 10 uploaded and now I have to take it back for a replacement hard drive. At least (touch wood) I haven’t had to buy a new laptop…yet!?
On top of all this a few weeks ago I decided to apply for my own broadband installation as I have been bouncing off the landlord’s signal for the past four years and was fed up with the constant freezing as happens when too many people are using the same modem. Getting broadband – like everything else on Crete – is no easy task! Admittedly things have improved greatly in the world of telecommunications here in the last few years but, without going into details, it has taken up too much of my valuable time – at a time when I haven’t had enough of it to spare. Despite this, I am still happy to report that it was well worth it! I finally have the ‘real deal’! For the first time in four years I have a landline again and my family are chuffed to bits! I just need to get my PC restored to its full fitness again and have my emails, Skype, TV and radio back.
I have just spent the afternoon at my dear friend Lisa’s home in Vamos. There hasn’t been an opportunity before in which to catch up on what’s been going on in our lives lately and believe me – there has been plenty of dramatic goings on in Lisa’s life these past few weeks as well. Oh and I did manage a night out this week at Vangeli’s – my local taverna in Plaka, which was followed by a visit to Captain Jack’s for their ‘End of Season’ Party. Needless to say I drank copious amounts of alcohol… wine, cocktails and baileys resulting in a very dodgy next day hangover!
And so it’s been rather a trying and worrying month all told and I am ever hopeful and optimistic that things are on their way up again. After all, I need to get back to my work, start producing more pictures and stride out onto those marvelous beaches in search of the beautiful seashells that can be found all around Crete’s coastlines and which make up so much of my artworks. There’s so much coming up in the next few weeks too – most importantly and very excitingly – the birth of my first grandchild is due around the 17th of this month! Wow! It still hasn’t quite sunk in…….!