It’s been a tough week – both emotionally and physically. Paul’s passing has left me reeling and I’ve had to cope with three days of monotonous railings to paint. It’s so frustrating when you’ve just spent four or five hours painstakingly glossing the damn things – when the wind decides to gust seemingly out of nowhere, and proceeds to coat them all in twigs, flowers, leaves and flies!
But during those three decorating days I had plenty of time to think, mostly about Paul and his life. Then eventually I started to think of my own, counting all my blessings and all the wonderful people I am lucky to still have in my life…so life goes on….
I am mad busy with my seashell mosaics and collages. I still get so much pleasure out of creating my artworks and whilst I am working on them, I need music! I mentioned a few posts back how I had trouble listening to Magic FM. Well having Expatsheild on my laptop was becoming a real pain. All the ads, programmes and cookies that came with it – because it was a free VPN – were creating havoc with my other programmes like Skype. Skype is like my telephone and when it rings I can’t answer it until I have shut down Expatsheild, so I binned it! After trying unsuccessfully to install a ‘paying’ VPN I went back to the web and searched the internet for UK radio stations that allowed overseas listeners. Smooth FM was about the only one, apart from BBC Radio 1 and 2, would you believe? They have way too much talking going on though. No – Magic FM can keep it’s ‘UK only’ listeners because I’m a real Smooth FM convert now! I love almost every tune they play from the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and later – it’s a good mix! But the weirdest thing of all is that Smooth FM just happens to be based in my area of the UK yet I never really discovered it until I moved here to Crete. Life appears to be full of synchronisity.
The shell sourcing takes up a huge amount of my time and is really important. Apart from the beachcombing I do here on Crete, I am busy researching the net for shells from all over the world. It can prove really difficult to find certain types – the seas don’t always give up their treasures easily. Yet I have recently been lucky enough to find someone living on the coast of Texas called Jennifer , who is hand-picking lots of beautifully coloured Coquina to send me – how good is that?
They are absolutely the best shells to work with, not just because of their variety of colours but their shape is perfect for mosaic. They are undoubtedly the most precious seashells I have and every batch I receive is a real treasure to me! Grateful thanks always, goes to www.seashellsandwood.com who have been searching their local beaches and beyond for my shells, for over three years now. Jim and Rose have enabled me to produce most of my best designs. Also www.shellhorizons.com , based in Florida, have always provided me with great customer service. Linda agreed to include deliveries from seashellsandwood.com in my order from Shell Horizons because sadly, www.seashellsandwood.com don’t have a shipping license for outside the USA. But still…I need more and that is why Jennifer is such a blessing!
The designs I have been working on this week are the ones with children and young people on the beach. These are becoming more and more popular and so I am producing much more of them. I need to beachcomb in Bali where I find most of the peachy/pinky/browny coquina that I use for the skin tones, but I must wait for a storm and then try and go looking as soon as I can afterwards. January was a good month weather-wise On Crete. It’s been relatively warm with lots of sunny spells and not much rain – perfect beachcombing weather really, but I’ve spent all those days this week painting railings! Tonight I am off to a gig in Georgoupolis, where Lisa’s Uncle Ron is playing in a band. It’s going to be a very late night as it doesn’t start until 10pm. So life goes on…