I have bid all farewell. Again. Off to Mesa Cultural Center to drop off a resume. It is an impressive complex. The Shakespeare company does not keep an office here so I will send it through the mail. Off I go. Land in Scottsdale, find Trailside Gallery and it is very cool. Most exclusively Southwestern art and artists.
Walk around a corner and I hear an artist talking about a client wanting another one of these "stagecoach” paintings, ugh. As I continue around the corner, I see a guy sitting spread eagle on the floor trying to get something off the painting. “Looks like lint. And I thought Lint was a Sunday in April,” he says. Funny, though no one in the gallery really laughs. “I don’t know, maybe a knife.”
There is a very distinguished, white-haired gentleman – most probably the owner - standing near him watching. The artist now has out a huge pocket knife and is going at it trying to dislodge what seems to be lint from the framed painting, approximately 36 x72" in size. Big. Beautiful painting. By now I am close, though pretending to look at paintings on the opposite wall. I say, “wow, you let just anyone in here, with a knife, to check out the artwork?” Now the people in the gallery laugh. The owner says, “not everyone, but as it’s his work, I figure it is in good hands.” I nod, “so I presumed.”
He then conveys to me, professionally, “let me know if you have questions.” I ask about a couple of artists that I have met, see if he knows them, or even represents them. It leads to my being a painter, traveling and painting. Ah, there’s the trigger. Artists don’t buy paintings (which, of course, is not true), but I am dismissed, with a smile "Enjoy the gallery," he says and turns on his heels. Actually, he will be very generous in spirit and service in a few minutes, handing me brochures etc.
Okay, so a quick walk around Scottsdale, a call in to my mother so suggest that I am off to Jerome and Sedona and here we go. Onto Scottsdale Avenue, heading to Hwy 101. I will be in Jerome in two hours or so. Waiting for the lights to change I note that my engine temp gauge is heading for HOT. Shit. Very anxious. Waiting for one stop light, then another, the red gauge heads for danger zone. I spy a service place, Brake Masters, pull in.
Long story short, could be thermostat, could be hoses. Let’s fix the thermostat. Two hours. Guys takes it for a spin, sees the gauge climb again to danger, though not as quickly. Another hour. I get an estimate for new belts etc, could work on it tomorrow, and over $1,000. Double Shit. No Can Do. Plus I think these guys are winging it.
Get Diann on the phone, she finds a Kia dealership on Scottsdale Avenue, I make the call, set up appointment for 7am; surely the Kia guys will know the vehicle better, after all, well... it is a KIA. I exit the Brakes Experts and suggest that I have a friend in Mesa (keep this up, and soon I won’t have ANY friends left in Mesa, ugh) who will look at it and as he is a mechanic might be able to fix it. It's a good story. They actually are happy for me. So, $100 down, new thermostat. And I head for Mesa with flashers on. Did I mention, temperatures are exceeding 105 degrees today.
Cathy yet again extends her courtesy and suggests I continue to be welcome to stay at the house though she might have a date tonight. I really have over-stayed the welcome and want to get this done, so I can get out of their hair. Date falls through, we go to dinner, this will be my treat, no questions, no arguments. Finish dinner, Cathy begins singing to a song playing in the restaurant (it isn’t busy), guy hears her and comes to the table to buy a round of drinks, so impressed is he with her singing. I just want a shot of tequila. (I lie, I want many several shots of tequila, but one will suffice nicely, thank-you-very-much).
He joins us, brings a bottle of what turns about to be a surprisingly awesome Kentucky bourbon that apparently a friend just delivered to him at the restaurant, the friend has left. The bottle sports a sassy little red velvet jacket; I suspect in Kentucky, they might call this a Bourbon Condom, but I could be wrong. It is good, tastes expensive, we have a “finger” second-helping and the bottle then is whisked from the table out of reach. Cathy and our new friend trade business cards. End of evening. Tomorrow: Take Three for Jerome.