Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Saturday, June 16, 2007

I've been wanting to blog about my recent trip but haven't made the time for it until now.

I went to the Salem, Massachusetts area for an encaustic painting conference last week. It was a lot of fun.

Dennis gave me a pass for Southwest, so I had to fly standby, which is scary to begin with but a little more scary during peak travel times. The conference started on Friday evening but I had been invited to a reception on Thursday evening, so I had to fly on Wednesday just in case I got stuck somewhere and wasn't able to get there in time. I made it to Manchester, NH late Wednesday night.

I was originally going to take a flight from Dallas to Chicago that stopped in Little Rock and then I'd catch another flight to Manchester. Unfortunately the flight out of Little Rock was full, so I got bumped and had to wait there for 5 hours. I finished my book (The Sweet Potato Queen's Book of Love - hilarious). I had brought another book (Off the Wall: a Portrait of Robert Rauschenberg) but it was very slow and hard to get into, so I went to the bookstore and bought Shopaholic Takes Manhattan. Trish had mentioned the series and said she liked them. Fluffy chick lit, but perfect for the plane.

I finally got on a flight to Baltimore and then got right on one to Manchester. I ended up getting in around 9:00 and then had to drive to Salem, which is about an hour away.

I had actually been to Salem when I was about 10. We lived in Rhode Island for 2 years and visited a lot of places while we were there. I remember visiting the Witch Museum and The House of the Seven Gables (although I have to admit that my memories of the House are mixed with my memories of that episode of Bewitched where Samantha is teased by the haunted bedwarmer or something or other in her visit there - yes! I looked it up - it was a bedwarmer...).

On Thursday, I drove to Lexington (that whole "shot heard round the world" thing happened there) to meet my cousin Rebecca and her girls. Rebecca is from the Atlanta area but lived in Providence, Rhode Island for a few years. She met her husband and they got married there but moved to Georgia after the wedding. They just moved to Massachusetts about 3 weeks ago.

Rebecca, Jenna, and Janelle

It was fun to see them. I hadn't met little Jenna. She's very cute and very busy.

When I got back to Salem I considered taking a nap but decided that I should go out and see stuff. So I walked around near the harbor and went into some shops. The weather was gorgeous - in the 70's and low 80's. One shop owner asked me where I was from and when I said Texas, he said, "Oh, then you're used to the heat." I said, "This heat? Are you kidding?"

I walked by The House of the Seven Gables and looked at the harbor.
I'm still amazed at all the history there. There were lots of houses that had these signs on them, listing the builder and the year they were built.

So much history, culture, and natural beauty... but of course I wouldn't last a winter...

That night I went to a reception of encaustic artists that was really great (I'm blogging about the conference on my other blog).

I need to process the rest of my photos in order to continue, so...

to be continued...