Monday, September 14, 2009

Old Settler's Days-Olathe Kansas, September 11 and 12, 2009

What a beautiful weekend to spend outdoors at an art and craft festival. The weather was warm but a steady breeze wafted over Lorita and I. Carried on the breeze was the sugary scent of fudge that was being made in the booth across from us. When we didn't have customers we watched with fascination as the fudge was cooked then poured out onto a marble slab and worked over with a paddle until it was the right consistency. Kansans love fudge! There were so many people that gravitated toward the fudge booth, at times we were a little jealous. At times I thought that maybe we should sell cookies along side our jewelry. Then  a customer would show up and get us focused on jewelry again. As hokey as it sounds, we love the moment that a woman or a girl connects with a certain pendant. They smile, they talk about it's beauty and they become excited about wearing it. Little moments like these are very special to us, its not just earning an income. Another bonus to working an art and craft fair is learning new skills. We are almost certain we can  now make fudge.

The lady next to us was selling "smoking bottles" which we had never heard of. They  are decorated wine bottles that hold burning incense safely without fear of fire. The pungent smoke drifted into our booth, flowing freely from a variety of bottles. Wow, what a flashback to the seventies! The high school and college moments when we would sit around a plant and listen to the deep deep lyrics of Bob Dylan and Neil Young. Memories continued arising throughout the weekend and our sinuses began to clog up from the fragrant smoke. It is always interesting to see what people are passionate about making. An added bonus to making smoking bottles, drinking wine!

There is something so American about these festivals. There is a lot of work involved; hauling a tent, chairs, glass, tables, cash box, office supplies, a cooler, etc. But to offset this is the unique culture that exists within American culture. We watch people drift by from all walks of life, all ages, economic levels, families that travel in multigenerational groups, young families starting out their lives together, the list goes on and on. One of the highlights of the weekend was watching a father and daughter choosing a pendant. The father was sweet and loving and the daughter carefully and thoughtfully looked at everything before choosing the right one. She was beautiful and her father a good and loving man. Good things happen on this earth and it is a privilege to be a part of it.

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