Raining on my rug

1 02 2008

It’s a very wet day in Northern Virginia…and as I write this, I notice that my “unfinished rug” is getting soaked outside (yet again). This painted (cement) rug has turned into a 3+ year project. I started it with gusto over three years ago, sometimes enlisting help of a friend to help color in my sketches…but mostly it has been me, sitting with my soda, CD player with Mary Chapin Carpenter, John Denver, Cheryl Wheeler, and Christine Kane to keep me company (and keep me inspired as well), jars of paint, a slew of brushes…trying to make this vision of mine come to fruition. My inspiration for this design was a beautiful piece of fabric. I have long since deviated from my original inspiration; the fabric pattern is ingrained in my head, nonetheless. Most people think it’s done; I know it is most certainly not. The time to paint is in the spring…unfortunately, that is also the time to prepare the garden, plant, and play. So painting takes a backseat and this is why the project is not yet finished.

I knew it was a (partial) success when my friend Norma came by to see me one day last spring, peeked through the locked back gate to see if I was outside, and seeing that it was about to pour, left me a message with sincere concern in her voice, telling me that I better “bring in my rug before it gets wet!” I considered that an extremely nice compliment to this not-yet-finished project. Every year I make a little more progress. Every year the rug fades a little in the finished areas and I get distracted and have to go back to touch those spots up, the color becoming brighter each time. I vow to finish it this spring, without fail. I will seal it, hoping the elements will be kind.