Overlooking Plein Air

Easton, MD has a Plein Air painting event that is considered one of the best in the country. People paint around the area for a week and significant prizes are awarded. On the Saturday of Plein Air week, activities center on Harrison Street. This painter was smart to put down a piece of cardboard to keep his feet off the hot asphalt.

About six years ago Laura had the idea to get a small group of women together to have lunch at one of the restaurants on Harrison Street and people watch. The first years we had lunch on the porch of Masons. Two years ago the restaurant closed so the following year we had lunch on the porch of The Bartlett Pear. People on the street wondered who we were to have such a great viewing location. Some asked if we were judges. We just nodded.

Bartlett Pear is now on the market and its restaurant is closed. Laura, being the master negotiator, rented the porch for us and we collaborated what each of us would bring for lunch. We started with cheese, crackers and fruit. Betty Ann brought two large pitchers of white Sangria. That was followed by a chilled carrot soup. Then a tomato filled with chicken salad. A mini-croissant completed the main course. Dessert was cookies I’d bought at the St. Michaels Farmers Market that morning and cut into quarters.

We had extra sangria so we shared it with the band. The left over cookies were given to the Bartlett Pear owner’s daughter to share with her friends. While we were still on the porch, artists would occasionally make their way up the stairs to get out of the sun and have a glass of sangria.

One of the signatures of Plein Air is that it seems to occur during the hottest week of July. This year was no exception. Temps in the high 90’s with Eastern Shore humidity. We had an occasional breeze on the Pear porch, but most of us were wearing as little clothing as possible that women of a certain age can get away with. After lunch we walked the streets for a little while and then took shelter in the air-conditioned Armory and the Art Museum where juried participant’s work was displayed and for sale.

I often think the palettes should be framed and sold.

By mid-afternoon we had sweltered long enough and went home. I took the remaining sangria fruit thinking I would cook it up, strain it and use the juice to make jelly.  I never want to waste anything. The juice is in the fridge and I will make Plein Air jelly tomorrow. There were so many kinds of fruit in the sangria that there won’t be one dominant flavor. I’ll see what kind of liquor I have in the cupboard that I could add to make a palate focal point. Peach schapps? Cassis? Port wine? Cointreau? I’ll let you know how it turns out. If it doesn’t jell, we can eat it over vanilla ice cream.

 

They Come In Out of the Rain

The Romance in the Pasture continues as a visibly pregnant wife was seen standing by the fence. I have a feeling this gestation will be brief as it would be pretty boring to see the wife pregnant for nine months.

pregnant wife by fence

Then we see her and her husband under the tractor. Oh, wait, that’s not her husband. He’s on the porch petting the dog. It’s the repair guy under the tractor with the pregnant lady. Hmmm. Is there a backstory here? And didn’t they check the weather forecast? Hurricane Joaquin is on the way.

romance in meadow - people under tractor

I drove past several times with the two of them on the ground in the pouring rain as we got the feeder bands from Joaquin. “Get your wife inside,” I thought, and drove on.

This morning I drove to Easton and was going to stop for a photo on the way back. By that time the couple had taken shelter. Or maybe the wife has gone into labor.

The tractor is still awaiting repairs. I noticed the wheel was chained to the fence. I suppose so no one steals it. And that tool box must be full of water.

tractor without wheel

And last night on my way to my Working Writer’s Forum in Easton the tractor was gone. We’ll keep watching how the story unfolds. Anybody want to suggest names for the baby?

I wonder if the cottage will be decorated for Halloween? Will the couple wear costumes?

Google tells me that the trendiest Halloween costumes for 2015 include Wendy Davis, and Donald Trump. Whatever happened to Star Wars, The Minions, super heroes, and  Disney princesses? Or pirates and ghosts? What do you think the couple in the pasture will wear for Halloween?