Monday, July 11, 2022

Lake Forest: the new and distant view; Maud Lewis; the end of the earth


The photos above and below were taken Friday morning.  We walked down to GANNET.  The wonderful difference since the removal of the detested ferry boat is experienced even as you walk through the gate and down the ramp to the docks.  No giant hulk is looming and lurking in the distance.  And with every step it is better and better.

You can see that GANNET is smiling.

That view while new and enormously pleasing is now distant.  You may have noticed that this entry comes from Lake Forest.  After an enjoyable weekend with Carol’s family we had an early flight from Charlotte to Chicago this morning and were at the apartment before 9 a.m.  I will be glad to be here for a while, but I do miss glancing up and seeing Skull Creek.

I did not know of the Canadian folk artist, Maud Lewis, until my friend Eric recommended a fine movie about her, MAUDIE.  The movie is not a documentary, but from what I have since read it is largely accurate about her difficult and unexpectedly successful life.  Crippled by severe childhood arthritis and without any training, she absorbed the pain, both physical and emotional, she suffered and painted what she saw around her in her native Nova Scotia.

In fact Maud Lewis’s life was darker than the art gallery would have us believe.  She had a child out of wedlock that was taken from her and she never saw.  A scene in the movie where she observes her by then teen age daughter from a distance without ever approaching her is pure fiction.  And the relationship with her husband was at times harsh.  

I have read that she sold her paintings for between $1 and $5,  lacking confidence to ask for more.

We rented the film from Amazon Prime.  I thank Eric for bringing it and Maud Lewis to my attention and now I have brought them to yours.

On the flight this morning I finished NIGHT TRAIN TO LISBON which is an original novel that did not go as I expected and which I am surprised to learn was a most unlikely commercial success because it deals with some serious philosophical questions, if any philosophical questions are really serious and not cosmic jokes, as I believe the central character in the novel who has died before it begins would consider them to be.

Along the way there are quotes I like from a 12th Century Muslin geographer, El Edirisi. written when he was in what is now Spain.

From Santiago we went to Finisterre, as the peasants call it, a word that means the end of the world.  You see nothing more than the sky and water, and they say that the sea is so stormy that no one could travel on it, and so you can’t know what is on the other side.  They told us that some, eager to fathom it, disappeared with their ships and none ever came back.

No one knows what is in this sea, nor can it be examined, for there are many obstacles that confront the ship voyage:  the profound darkness, the high waves, the frequent storms, the countless monsters that inhabit it, and the violent winds.


Anonymous said...

Much better to drive to Finisterre by van. Add that one to my list.

Anonymous said...

Even from afar at Chula Vista Marina
THAT Ferry was irritating 😳
Happy for Gannet and all the others
Peace and Health

Bobby Asher said...

Interesting note about the film Maudie: In spite of Maud being a Nova Scotian artist, the movie was shot in Newfoundland, and specifically in the town of Keels on the Bonavista peninsula where my in-laws spend every summer. The exterior and interior shots of the store are at Mesh's where we buy our groceries, and the house where the art collector lived in the movie is in the town as well.

It's an incredibly beautiful part of the world and absolutely worth a visit.