Thursday, November 12, 2015

"Rising Together"

Now that Biscuit is in school, Jeff and I don't get to take our annual anniversary trip anymore. So I ended up with an extra week of vacation time and no good reason to take it. I decided I would just pick a random week and enjoy some time off to myself.

When I looked at the calendar, I realized that the week before Biscuit's birthday would be a good week to take some days.

It was wonderful. And I only checked my work email once. I was very proud of myself for that.

I made plans for Biscuit's birthday party. I had lunch with a friend. I did a little Christmas shopping. I rearranged my chest freezer and my regular freezer. I also rearranged some other closets and areas of the house. I did things that nobody will notice but me. But they were things that make my everyday life easier and more organized.

I also planned to use some of my time off to write some blog posts I've been meaning to write. But did that happen? No.

So here's one from a while back.

The week of my surgery, there was a big folk music festival in town. I had edited so many stories about that thing that I couldn't decide whether I wanted to go or whether I was already sick of it before it had even happened. I read so much about the artists and events that I felt like I had already seen it.

As part of the event, this sculptor came to town and created a ladder sculpture called "Rising Together."

About two weeks before the festival, the sculptor asked for ladder donations from anyone who wanted to participate. They could be old or new, decorated or plain. My boss (and luckily also my friend) suggested that she and I decorate one themed for the paper. She asked one of our maintenance guys, and he actually had an old ladder he was willing to give us.

We covered it with sections of the paper, comics, business cards, PR materials, even branded drink koozies. And we had a great time doing it.

After all, who gets to spend a part of their workday doing what we all did in kindergarten - cutting and gluing and coloring?

Here's our ladder partially done. We painted
a layer of watered-down glue over top of
everything to smooth the edges and protect
our creation from the elements.

My boss and I wanted to document our work, so we got
one of our staff photographers to take a picture of us.

When we finished, the maintenance guy who got the ladder for us also offered to deliver our ladder to the drop-off site. He said he wasn't creative like us but that he could drive a truck and do some lifting.

I went home that evening and told Biscuit about the ladder my boss and I created. He got a funny look on his face.

"What's wrong?" I asked him.

"Mom!" he said, getting excited. "You'll never guess what."

"What?" I asked.

"We made a ladder today at school, too!" he said.

The school's ladder was painted white, then all the kids were allowed to add their fingerprints in red or blue paint. (The school's colors are red, white and blue).

So we traded details about how our ladders looked, and I told him that once the sculpture was done, we'd go see it and hunt for our ladders.

Well, my appendix decided otherwise. I didn't get to go to the festival or see the sculpture.

But remember that boss and friend I mentioned? She DID get to see it, and she was kind enough to take pictures for Biscuit and me. She got an overall picture, then she made sure to get close-ups of each of our ladders.

Check out our ladders:

The sculpture looked kind of like an igloo to me. It had a dome shape, and you could walk into it.

This is the ladder my boss and I decorated. It's hard to see the details because
it was overhead, and the sky is bright behind it. It was quite a hodge-podge, though.

Biscuit's ladder was on the outside. I think it showed up well because it had a white background.
Biscuit said his fingerprint was blue, but of course he couldn't remember where he put it.

I'm not much of an art person. I can't really explain the technical aspects of this sculpture. But I can say that I did get the symbolism of having these ladders donated from people all over the city piled up together. It did fit its name.

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