2004-08-02

Crossing Fences

The last outing here motivated me to develop my ideas into a collection of thematically similar works. I returned only days after the last outing with two new canvases. Only this time I knew more or less where to go. It seems that I?m a bit of a spectacle here. The guys in the motorcycle repair shop stared at me and further down the road the old men sitting in front of one of the roadside bars looked at me curiously. They are the same folks that I saw the first day out and probably the same ones I?ll see each time I pass. This time I go with more confidence than last and as I head out towards my valley, I ponder what to paint. A herd of bulls stop their grazing and contemplate me from behind a fence made of narrow bamboo poles and a single wire. I figure as long as they think the fence is electrified, I?m OK (later I checked it and it wasn?t). Two bulls closest to the fence back off to put some distance between us. This gave me hope that they?re more afraid of me than I of them. I came to one of the gated hunting grounds, opened the gate and headed in continuing on until I reached the next hunting grounds which I enter by stepping over the barbed wire fence. I have concluded that if someone went to the effort of putting a fence around it, its worth visiting. A tree sitting at the back of the valley caught my attention and so I made my way to it and sat and took a rest. The view looking back over the valley was spectacular with the late afternoon sun just hitting the tops of the hills. A few hours later I nearly finished and darkness started setting in. I made my way to the same campspot as before and ate the sandwiches I brought for dinner. In the morning, while eating breakfast, I found that a night bird had come and perched on top of my painting as I slept beside it. It left prints in the blue paint of the sky some of which I have left as a permanent part of the painting. Once again the man on horseback made his way over to chat. He?s a ranger of sorts and makes sure that all hunting is done according to regulations. I get back to painting and finish up the fourth of the series by two in the afternoon. Eating an apple, I head back out to catch my bus.