Tuesday, April 02, 2019

Surprise Road Trip

Well, I guess a gradual surprise. This phase began when we finally got the official word about the special Kean faculty show down on Long Beach Island.  I learned of the show back in the fall, but it took until a few weeks ago to get all the details.  At that point we got the dates, including drop off dates and reception, and I decided to go ahead and finish preparing my pieces for the show.  We were sent an online registration form, but these things often have problems.  Did my best with it and maybe it worked, but just to make sure they got all the information they needed, I also sent it as an e-mail directly to the gallery coordinator.  (address included on the registration form) The form, with images, statements, etc was due around the end of the week, but I saw no point in waiting once I had it done.

What I did not expect was that the coordinator would reply quickly to the e-mail, this past weekend.  She received it, all was in order, and she mentioned that she would be there to accept works every day this week.  This was a little confusing, as the dates we were given said that drop off would be next week.  I could handle either one, but didn't want to cause any problems, so I sent an e-mail yesterday asking for illumination.  They were closed yesterday, so I didn't expect an answer right away.

But this morning I did hear from her, and she said I could drop off work either this week or next week, but preference was for it to be this week, before the current show there came down and was returned.  And since the forecasts on the tv weather station declared the today was likely the best day this week, I decided to go ahead and do it today.  After lunch I called her and let her know I was coming, carried my framed pieces to the car, filled my gas tank, and took off.

As far as I could remember, I've been to Long Beach Island once before in my life, but I had a vague idea of where it would be, and I estimated about an hour trip.  From the time I left my current home town, it indeed took about an hour to get there.  No traffic on the Parkway South in the early afternoon, nor on the local highway that I took over to the coast, then across to the island where my destination was found.

The website directions were accurate and I easily found the Long Beach Island Foundation for Arts & Sciences.  The parking lot and the building were both nearly empty, but eventually I found someone in the ceramics room who could direct me to the coordinator's office and location.  The main hall is a large room, white walls covered with lots of art, and a stage at one end, used in various performances I am told.  There were also a few classrooms, where activities (such as ceramics) could be held, plus space in some adjoining buildings around the parking lot.  I was told that the place tends to be a lot more crowded in the summer months (I was not unhappy to have no crowds to deal with today) and that summer population would be starting to arrive in time for the latter half of our show, so people should be seeing it.  I dropped off my pieces, was told that everything was in order, walked around to get a quick tour of the place, then started my journey back home.  Went back the way I came with no incidents.  The round trip covered about 100 miles.  Just after I left the property the rain began- not hard, just a sprinkly thing.  So much for the nicest day of the week, but at least I got my delivery in before that happened.

So I don't have to worry about anything involving this show for the rest of this week, or next week, or for about a month after that.  The reception is on the last day of the show, with the idea that we can pick up our pieces at the end of day and take them home.   It's far enough away that I don't expect to go back to see the show again until that day.  I'm told that postcards are in progress and they will be distributed through our organizer at the college, so I hope to get those in a few weeks.  When I see that, you will as well.


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