I've been back from Cuba for a whole week. At times it seems like way more than a week and at other times I can still feel the sand between my toes. While I was away I crossed a few things off my bucket list. Some of those things don't need to become public knowledge, but one of the most fun was my experience with Cuban cigars!
My children are pretty disgusted with me - I don't smoke and I certainly don't advocate smoking, but it seems to me when in Cuba you should embrace the culture and that surely must include a cigar or 2. I wasn't expecting to enjoy it so much and herein lies the problem. Perhaps it was the atmosphere, the warm Cuban nights, the muy caliente staff, the 7 year Havana rum... Apart from a couple of accidental inhales (that was not so pleasant) cigar smoking was one of the highlights of my day and I think that Monte Cristos and I now have a special relationship that should be nurtured and relived on special occasions!
Not having/being able to worry about the Gallery for a whole week made my Cuban experience even better. Last time I went away I was in almost constant contact during my week, but in Cuba email and internet are virtually non-existent and I was not about to waste precious beach time standing in line to use the phone.
I feel that February was a turning point for the gallery (and for me and my lungs!) It was so great to go away knowing the Gallery was in good hands and knowing that we had already had our best month ever (we almost doubled our sales from our previous best month!). This was a month where everything seemed to just click: great artists, exciting shows, an appreciative audience, some amazing publicity, off the charts sales, rum, Cuban cigars....
Life is good indeed
Happy Leap Day!
What a week we've had! As I write this I am on a bit of high, I suspect tomorrow will be my crash day and I'll be more than happy to stay home in my pjs and reflect on one of the most exciting weeks in the gallery and my life. For today though it's one more day of enjoying Tom Wilson's great art and music
In case you missed it Tom Wilson, Junkhouse, LeE HARVeY OsMOND and Blackie and the Rodeo Kings has been our featured artist this week. His canvases with flat noses, big blue eyes, song lyrics and moons have graced our walls this week and the response to them has been amazing! Now that I've met Tom I understand some of this love - his presence just seems to excite the room and, despite all his past struggles, he could be one of the calmest and coolest dudes I've ever met. No red M & M demands for this rock star. I felt like I'd known him for years - conversation was easy, funny and diverse (and not necessarily repeatable!) I even teased him a bit about swearing in the Gallery. It was a fantastic night.
And then last night I was lucky enough to get a couple of free passes to the concert at Festival Place (what a beautiful hall that is). Don't hate me B&RK fans, I worked pretty hard this week, I think I deserved a little job perk. The night began with Harlan Pepper (featuring Tom's son on bass) and as soon as they stepped on stage I knew we were in for a real treat. Those boys are so talented and boy can they ever can sing! Don't be surprised if you stop in today and hear their CD playing.
I feel like the gallery has arrived this week and I am grateful to Chris Mak for making this happen and of course to Tom for taking a chance and trusting us to display his paintings. Thanks also to all my friends and colleagues who have put up with my stress levels this week, especially Cora Thayer who is taking me to Cuba in 10 days to recover!
Thanks everyone for making The Daffodil Gallery truly Shine this week!