Another most interesting day in Ireland.
I was set up in the gallery to paint by the window this morning when I received a message from Olive. She let me know that Ann forgot to mention the wood she gave me (see "Treat Day!") was from the Jeanie Johnston Ship Project, and suggested I look it up. Intrigued, I googled it immediately. That's when the tears started. This ship made 16 trips across the Atlantic between 1847 and 1855 carrying new immigrants to the U.S. The Jeanie Johnston carried more than 2.500 people without losing a single passenger. And a replica of this ship was built here in County Kerry so that people could experience first hand what Irish immigrants went through. The original Jeanie Johnson carried people away from the famine in Ireland to the U.S. and Canada. Could my mother's ancestors have been on this tall ship? And here I was with a piece of the replica in my hands, waiting to be transformed by paint. Just as with pub theater night earlier in the week, I felt the tug of my grandfather and Irish family now long gone.
And then there were the cows. Diane noticed the sound of cows bellowing right outside our door. I thought perhaps it was a strange engine gone bad. But no, actual cows in trailers, pulled by tractors past the window of the gallery. The cows were quite vocal, perhaps unhappy with their accommodations behind the tractors. We don't know where they were headed, but we got the feeling this was a regular occurrence in Listowel.
Today's piece was inspired by the beautiful pastries we received yesterday. The artists here before us painted these treats, and we thought it was a lovely tradition to continue. Besides, if we keep painting treats, maybe folks will bring us more. :)