Monday, October 21, 2013


Oil on canvas, 12x12

Years ago, a lifetime ago, I had the chance to become the editor of The Carroll County Times in Westminster, MD. I'd wanted to be the editor since I'd started in newspaper 10 years earlier, and I'd worked hard to make it happen.

So I left a great job - copy desk chief of The Virginian-Pilot, in Norfolk, VA - and took the leap.

It quickly became dispiritingly clear that running a newsroom was just not for me. It was a terrible fit with my personality. And the publisher of the Carroll County Times made being the editor there an even worse fit.

But I loved my editors and my staff, and one of the people at the top of that list was Toni Guagenti, a vivacious, energetic reporter who strove to do her best, every story, every time. She was smart and kind and funny. She loved dogs. And she extended a hand of friendship to me during what was a very, very tough stretch of life.

In time, Toni and I both left Carroll County. After a brief stay at the Washington Times, she was hired by The Virginian-Pilot, where she worked until relatively recently, when a round of layoffs eliminated her position.

She freelances in Hampton Roads now, and we have been in touch since I moved to Wachapreague last year. And when a dear friend of hers, Corinne, lost her beloved cat this summer, Toni got the two of us together.

On Saturday, Toni and Corinne came to Wachapreague to collect the painting of Rio, and to take me out. We had a great time, talking and laughing, catching up, getting to know each other - and having a delicious lunch at The Island House, to boot!

Today, the morning dawned crisp and clear, with a cool autumn wind blowing in from the north.

Winter is coming, with its gray days and early sunsets. But as I write this, I'm cooking homefries with lots of onions, the sun is out and the day is full of promise. Peter is in the other room, tying flies and planning his day's fishing. I'm listening to the dogs bark and feeling lucky to have a family I love, friends new and old, and people in my life who enrich me spiritually, challenge me intellectually and help me live my dreams.

ONE OF THOSE people is Lori Chozik, who owns Center Framing & Art in West Hartford Center, CT. My brother introduced me to Lori, and she was the first gallery owner to want to represent me. On Friday, she hung a whole bunch of my paintings in the window.

I think it looks great! If you're in or near West Hartford Center, take a stroll by, and poke your nose in the gallery and say hello.

AS FOR THE houses or coffee cups question, opinions are just about evenly split, with some folks offering different ideas (dogs, trees)... and most people saying just do something that will amuse me. So I am still trying things. And still open to ideas!

Dog of the Day
This dog and her people were dining on the deck at the Island House on Saturday. 

No comments: