Friday, June 16, 2017

Some Summerfest Stories

Every summer for the past 25 years or so, I've participated in Summerfest Art Festival which is held in Logan, most of those years on the beautiful grounds of the LDS Tabernacle in the center of town. I suspect that I have hundred of my creations in kitchen cupboards, on tables, and displayed in homes all over town, and beyond. I hear stories about my pottery every year from returning customers, but tonight I heard one that really broke my heart.

My husband was watching my booth for me while I took a break. When I got back,  a woman was buying a platter that had only been on display for an hour or two. As I wrapped up the sale, I learned that the younger woman was buying the platter for her friend, who was of my generation. That woman said she and her husband visited my booth every year and that my pottery is all over their house. She said her husband bought her a new piece every year. I nodded thinking that was very sweet and flattering. Then she said, this is our first year without him. It took me a few seconds to figure out what was happening. I looked at her again and saw that she had tears in her eyes. I said, did your husband pass away. She said he had. Now her friend bought her a piece of pottery because her husband wasn't there to do it.

This was quite a contrast from a story another woman told me years ago. She came by my booth and wanted me to know that when she and her husband had divorced that year, they had fought over two things, the dog, and a vase that I had made. The vase had a lizard on it and I remember it well.

One of my favorite things about making pottery is meeting the people who love my work.  I've had people tell me that at the time of their mother's passing, they each got to choose my pottery. Whether it's to celebrate love or to end love,  or at the end of life, it's gratifying to find that my pottery is a part of the story.
This is very similar to the platter