We parked two blocks away from the city park and stepped out into the warm arms of a summer sun just starting to emerge after a spate of early morning showers. It was the perfect day for walking by the lake, and we did, slowly, mingling with the crowds as we poked around booths full of handcrafted goods and the shops along Sherman Avenue. There were musicians of all kinds playing and singing in the streets, and we gave the kids change to put in their cases as we passed by. Buskers, they’re called; isn’t that a fun word? Art on the Green is one of my favorite Coeur d’Alene holidays, and we never miss it.
The work of artisans, both local and “imported”, were displayed everywhere we looked: hand-thrown pottery, unique jewelry, copper sculptures gleaming in the brightening light. The air was redolent with the smell of hot funnel cakes, fresh kettle corn, and tangy barbecue. In between clamoring for frozen lemonade and ignoring the “please do not touch” signs bedecking some of the more delicate artwork, Katie and Caleb both found souvenirs to take home. Caleb fell in love with a small green dog with a shiny coat in a booth that offered stuffed animals of every kind imaginable. Katie chose a marionette made out of yarn, and she’s been dancing it around on its strings ever since we got home.
As for me, I also got to choose a souvenir. Since Art on the Green falls on or near my birthday every year, Paul always gets me something lovely and frivolous to commemorate the experience. Last year, he bought me a sweet ceramic sushi set (nice alliteration, right?):
The year before that, he helped me pick out a beautiful blue sarong. I wore it today, tied as a skirt.
This year, I wandered into a booth that I have been drawn to for the past several years. The artist uses recycled glass windows and bottles to create graceful and exquisite vases, which hang on the wall. No two are alike, and they look like something that Titania herself would have used to decorate her leafy bower. Some of them incorporate flowers or dragonflies, and others are pebbly with the texture of the the broken glass that has been melted down to create them. The hardest part of my day was deciding which one I liked best:
Isn’t it wonderful? I’ve put silk flowers in it for now, but it can hold water and fresh flowers, as well. I love it! Thank you, Paul.
After a few hours on our feet and a hot meal, the whole crew was ready to call it a day. We set our sails for home… and air-conditioning. Collapsing onto the couch, I could only feel gratitude for the wonderful day. The lake, the mountains, sunshine, treasure, food, and air-conditioning. Am I blessed, or what?