Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Orchid in the Gulf and a Story: Storms

Once of the graces that has been given to me during this illness, is the ability to create art. It's somewhat sporadic as I have to spend so much time lying down. This time I wanted to create something special for another sufferer, who is also a friend. I found out her favorite colors - yellow and the colors of the Gulf of Mexico. She has to travel to get to the Gulf, so she doesn't get to spend time there now. She also loves flowers.

Orchid In The Gulf
(click to see details)

I knew I wanted to be able to get it to her as soon as possible, so I chose a small wrapped canvas- 8 x 8. It is mixed media, with collage, gel medium, acrylic paint and oil pastels. The flower comes from an old English botany book, and I made a copy to transfer on. However, it did not do very well and I ended up painting most of it. I also included  a postage stamp to bring out the bits of red, and a strip of muslin, dyed blue with paint, runs along the bottom. I love to extend my collage to the sides, so what you see collaged folds over the edges. I chose that particular flower because of the colors, they resembled the colors of the Gulf water. She notified me when she received it, and she loves it. That just makes my day!


61st in the Tuesday Story Series

Watching the path of Sandy for the past several days, and praying for all of the people in the congested area it was aimed for, could only bring back memories of another severe hurricane we went through in 1989 in Charleston - Hurricane Hugo. It made landfall in the Charleston area about midnight on 21 September and wreaked havoc through the early morning hours of 22 September. 

When I was a child, we went through Hurricane Gracie in 1959, and it was a Category 4 when it hit the South Carolina coast. We battened down the hatches and rode it out, since no one was warned to leave. I was eleven at the time, and a few memories that stand out to me was the wind and rain, the fact that my mother boiled several dozen eggs and when it was over, she stated "Well, I was expecting buckets and things to be flying through the air! Wasn't anything like that!" She was from Pennsylvania and this was her first hurricane to go through. The major damage from that storm was in Beaufort SC, although we were without electricity for a couple of days.

When Hugo started taking aim at Charleston, I was not concerned. By that time, I had been through numerous hurricanes and thought it would be just like the others. We made preparations and settled in to wait. When the electricity went off around 10 PM, that was the last we would see of it until 8 days later. Tabitha was about 6 years old, and doesn't remember anything about the storm, just the aftermath.  We had bedded her down on the floor of our closet, as it was the most protected place in the house.

Hugo made dead aim at Charleston, and I remember when the eye went over around midnight, we went outside and there was not a bit of wind. The stars were gorgeous and several neighbors called back and forth to make sure we were all okay. Then the wind started picking up and we all scooted back inside.

During that first half, we had heard all 15 trees fall, and each time they hit the ground, our stone fireplace shook. We heard several tornadoes go though between our row of houses and the houses behind us, and they do sound like trains! In another story, I will describe in more details about the destruction and how it affected us. For now, I will just say we were all right, but after that whenever a hurricane took direct aim at us, I packed the car and left for my parents. John stayed at work, in the emergency center area, because he couldn't leave. 

Hugo was a Category 4 when it slammed into our area, and the damage from it was the costliest in the US history till that time. Now, it's ranked as the 11th costliest storm to have made landfall in the US.

And they still built large beach houses right at the water's edge after that. Dumbest thing I ever saw.

Come see my latest postcards I've received on Postcards Buffet!


  1. buckets flying through the air :) that sounds like something granny would say...

  2. I remember all those boiled eggs! And the trees in the front yard bending all the way to the ground in the wind! It was fascinating to watch Gracie. The piece of art is beautiful, I love the flower and the colors! Love you!


Hi! Please leave a comment - they mean a lot.
Thanks for coming by to visit!