Friday, July 11, 2008

When There's a Will, There's a Wall

"Oh my God! That ees JUST what I have been looking for!" Monique was standing in front of my painting "Spirit of Light." Each languorous syllable rolled from her French tongue, entered my ears, leaped from one little bone to the next, did a little dance on my eardrum, then proceeded directly to my heart, which skipped a beat.

"JUST what I have been looking for." Music to my jaded ears.

Then this: "Oh, I am so peesed off. I may be without a home in thirty days."

My heart returned to its usual, humdrum beat.

"You're being foreclosed?"

"It ees my marriage (she said it in three peesed-off syllables--mare-e-ajh) that is being foreclosed. It ees I who ees foreclosing the son of a beech. I am very peesed off. And I may not get the house."

"Oh, I see. Then you may not have a wall for the painting."

"Of course I will have a wall for the painting. It ees exactly what I have been looking for. There ees always a wall for what one has been looking for. Do you take Visa?"

My painting "Spirit of Light" appeared to have found the proper (broken) home. Monique proceeded to describe to me how she would pay for the painting. She would put down a deposit of 20%. In 45 days I would charge her Visa account the balance. Since she might be in the market for a home, as the "son of a beech" might get hers, she wanted to keep all of her credit card balances as low as possible so as to maximize her credit score. I agreed to this. It made sense. Monique was a distinguished economist after all. And I adored her accent.

I know. I know. This is where I'm supposed to explain how Monique waffled on the offer 45 days later, how she called me and with those persuasive nasalized vowels, cajoled me to refund s'il vous plait her deposit. That's what I would be expecting to read anyway. I already told you. These ears have heard it all. They are jaded ears.

Only thing is that's not what happened. The rest of the story is:

  1. I charged the balance on Monique's account 45 days later.
  2. I shipped Monique "Spirit of Light."
  3. I shipped the painting to the same address that Monique had had 45 days earlier.
  4. The son of a beech didn't get her house.
  5. There was a wall for the painting.
  6. Had the address changed, there would have been a wall for the painting.

The moral of the story:

When there's a will, there's a wall. The hard part is recognizing what you've always been looking for. It helps to have your eyes open. Even in the darkest times.

133 comments:

murat11 said...

"There ees always a wall for what one has been looking for."

Absolute beauty in that statement: truth beyond the immediate context. (Corollary: "There is always truth beyond the immediate context. 'Swat truth is.")

It took me a long overdue time to get around to it, but I am currently reading Rushdie's The Satanic Verses. Lush hallucinations: you could have illustrated it.

Peace, Ms San.

aims said...

Having been in retail and tourism nearly all of my life - you certainly do 'hear it all' and you certainly do become jaded. Sad isn't it?

San said...

Paschal, yes there is much truth in that statement beyond the immediate context. Yes, your corollary has been proven time and again.

Haven't read The Satanic Verses. I must.

Paz to you, cuddin'.

San said...

Aims, the oddest thing we hear in our gallery, where we show my husband's art clocks: Why are these clocks all set to the same time?

Answer: Because that's what time it is, stupid. Only we have to say it a bit more politely.

:-0

andrea said...

There's a lesson here for those less inclined to view the glass as half full. I would have done the same thing (and have done similar on occasion with no regrets). She's a lucky grenouille to have such a beautiful painting chez elle. (My kids speak French fluently but nine's just a little patchy...:)

San said...

Andrea, I appreciate your half-glass vision. Not to mention your French.

Patchy? I would say FAR more than half full!

Sandi McBride said...

Oh how I love this post! There is to much right with it to point them out...I'd be here all day...but you wouldn't care would you dear San? I've been coming by for days waiting on a new post and I get this lalapalooza...loved it...I remember the first time I heard a Frenchman say the ugly word for excrement...two very long sylables...like a sheet in two parts...and oh yes, where there's a will, there's a wall...and usually quite a number of benefactors holding their hands out, lol! I love this painting myself...it is just what I am looking for...I see a colony of Pueblo Indians in this...it called to me immediately...what a shame...but I probably couldn't have afforded it anyway...glad it got a home where it will be forever loved and never having to find another wall
Sandi

rebecca said...

what a ratatouille!

b2 said...

Thank you, dear San, for helping me keep my eyes open.

WILSONART said...

OH
MY
GAWSH
How I LOVE this story! You've written it so perfectly, I can SEE Monique! Hear her!
The son of a beech did not deserve her,much less the painting.
Well worth waiting for, this post,,,(I'm still grinning!)
You are every bit the writer as you are a painter, and it's a
FAB painting!

Lee said...

LOL What an delicious story, San! I'm so glad that Monique found what she was looking for. It's even better that you were there to help her find it. :)

French accents are fun aren't they?

Hugs!

Celebration of Life said...

San,
What a lovely story, thanks for sharing it! Have a great weekend!
Jo

San said...

Sandi, your enthusiastic words mean so much to me. THANK YOU.

Am currently at work on Spirit of Light's sister painting. Just kidding. Then again...

San said...

Rebecca, speaking of ratatouille, I adore the movie by the same name!

San said...

b2, I would say you've always been pretty open-eyed.

katie jane said...

San, I so agree with Babs. You are such a great storyteller and a great artist. I'm so happy that this story had a happy ending. I have many that do not. This is (was) a beautiful painting. Congratulations!

San said...

Babs, talk about music to my ears. That's what your comment is. And I can dance to it.

WOO-HOO!

San said...

Lee, it was a fun experience. Case of both of us being in the right place at the right time.

Hugs back!

San said...

Thanks, Jo. You have a lovely weekend too...

San said...

Katie, I believe we all have stories with less than happy endings. It goes with our job description.

Thank you much for your kind words.

Blue Sky Dreaming said...

San, You took a great story and told it better...I enjoyed every word! Your painting is a beauty...colors celebrate!
Mary Ann

RiverPoet said...

I love it when a piece of art finds just the right home. It's a beautiful painting, San. I'm so glad that someone who loves it got it for her wall. And I'm glad the "son of a beech" didn't get the wall!

Peace - D

(formerly Momma)

SandyCarlson said...

All I can say is Amen. And thank you. And, of course, God bless.

Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

That's a marvelous story, San. And a grand painting!

Akelamalu said...

Beautiful painting!

Great story!

Congratulations on the sale!

sukipoet said...

Lovely painting, And as someone else said, I love it when a painting finds a home with someone who loves it. How good it must make you feel when someone says of your work, I must have this. As others have said too, the story is so well told. I can just hear this woman. It is so funny really. Hurrah to her for keeping the house and now, with her new art on the wall to remind her of her trip to Santa Fe.

Bruno LoGreco said...

Sorry to hear that Spirit of Light is back in your gallery. It just means that Monique's wall was not the correct wall for your Spirit of Light.

You are awesome San - I don't think you are Jaded at all. :)

Celebration of Life said...

San,
I have a will and a wall.....
I can't wait to see what appears there! ;o)

lime said...

it's so true, it really is. and sometimes where there is a wall there is a piece waiting for it too.

little story...

when we moved to a house with a fire place i wanted something special for over the mantle. there was a little artists co-op downtown. i went to look for something and found a metal sculpture of bamboo leaves (now to me it looked like mountain laurel because [the angle was as if viewing the leaves from the top of the tree]i have seen plenty of both plants) and i fell in love with it. it whispered to my heart and it said to me, "i will remind you of someone you love who told you to always grow no matter where you are planted." i had to have it. unfortunately it cost about twice as much as i could afford. i left very sadly. but i visited the sculpture about 3 times over the course of 3 months. then i came into a small amount of money and went back to visit the sculpture again. the co-op was having a significant sale. between the sale and the unexpected dinero I had enough. i absolutely beamed when i bought it. it's been over my mantle ever since and it gives me great joy.

Martha Marshall said...

So, so true. It's wonderful to know there are people like this woman who loves that painting enough to make a place for it no matter what. I love walking through the homes of real art collectors -- not the ones who decorate with art, but the ones who truly love art. They don't care if it matches the sofa, or if they have to hang it waist-high or next to (or on!) the ceiling.

reat piece of writing, San!

Martha Marshall said...

Damn new keyboard! I meant to say "Great!"

CrazyCath said...

Great writing San. You are always so full of positivity, so open and non judgemental - it is incredibly refreshing.

And as a result, this lady got her painting and you got a sale. Great lesson for us all.

San said...

Mary Ann, thank you. Living with joyous color encourages our own joyousness, don't you think?

self taught artist said...

too wonderful
miss your posts...you must be doing summer like everyone else

San said...

Doris, I love that too. Destiny seems to come into play.

And I love your new moniker.

San said...

Sandy, thank you for sitting in the amen corner!

And such a lovely new profile pic you have.

San said...

Nick, that's a grand compliment I will accept most graciously.

Thank you.

San said...

Pearl, thank you so much!

I need to get over to your place and see if you wrote a wordzzle this week. You're so good at that.

San said...

Suki, thank you for your thoughtful comment. Yes, many people tell us that they love to buy art when they travel, since it reminds them of a special time and place. Makes us feel as though we're conspirators in keeping good memories alive.

San said...

Bruno, it means a lot to me for you to say I am not jaded. And awesome. Wow! Thank you.

San said...

Jo, yes, you have a WILL. All caps and in bold (except I haven't figured out how to use HTML tags effectively in comments.)

:-D

San said...

Lime, I love your story. Again, a case of art and collector being matched in heaven. That destiny thing.

Your sculpture is most fortunate to be in your loving care.

San said...

Martha, you are so right. Art doesn't go with decor. It opens us into another world.

Congratulations on your reat new keyboard. ;-)

San said...

Cath, tell me about positivity. You are a big breath of fresh air and honesty.

Thank you for being who you are!

San said...

Thanks, Paula. Yes, summer is busy--at the gallery and at home. Houseguests arrive today!

Bruno LoGreco said...

I misread your post this morning. I must have still had sleepies in my eyes. :) - still don't think you are jaded. :)

I'm happy Spirit Of Light has a new home - I was trying to find a wall for it here in NYC.

San said...

Bruno, how thoughtful of you to stop by again. Thank you.

You're in NYC--WOO-HOO!

smith kaich jones said...

This is just so GOOD! I wanna take this woman out & just sit & talk to her. Of course there's always a wall! How incredibly easy it really is. I am on my way out the door for a photo safari, a little kick start for my inner artist, a little play time. This story makes me say YES - just do it - there will be a wall. If you build it . . .

:) Debi

Mima said...

San its a really beautiful painting, and it really does sound as if it has found its home. I know the feeling though I have one picture that I just had to have whatever, and I did eventually manage to get it!

Sparkling Red said...

Go Monique! I aspire to be that gutsy.

Velvet Ginger (Rubye Jean) said...

LOL @ the way you imitated Monique! Cute!
Good for her! Great choice in paintings...I love oranges and purples together!

Dianne said...

reading this makes me want to hang something beautiful on all the walls I usually bang my head against ...

Daryl said...

So true!

I am so happy it has a good home .. I love it ...

:-Daryl

Hilary said...

Sometimes we're just destined to find the right things to compliment our lives. Your story is proof of that. Well told.

Indigo said...

Indigo Incarnates

At least the picture is pretty :)

San said...

Hey Debi. I hope you captured a lot of big game on your photo safari. And I'm glad the Monique story proved inspiring to you.

San said...

Mima, thanks for sharing your own art/destiny story. How cool!

San said...

Spark, let's all aspire to be that gutsy!

San said...

Rubye Jean, I'm glad you liked the accent bit. It was fun.

So glad you like the painting!

San said...

Diane, just don't go banging you head against any expensive painting you might hang!

And thank you for visiting.

San said...

Daryl, you are always so supportive. Thank you.

San said...

Hillary, I love what you say about "the right things to complement our lives." Well put.

San said...

Hi Indi. Thanks. Hope you're having a nice weekend.

Jimmie Sue said...

thank you for sharing this post for a variety of reasons.

San said...

Jimmie Sue, thanks for visiting.

Jeff B said...

Tres magnificant!

How nice that things worked out for you as well as Monique

whimsical brainpan said...

How wonderful! Sounds like she could have used a little light in her life and your painting was just the thing.

Meg Wolff said...

San,
I loved your description of how you heard her words "Each languorous syllable rolled from her French tongue, entered my ears, leaped from one little bone to the next, did a little dance on my eardrum, then proceeded directly to my heart, which skipped a beat."

Great this story had a good ending, and this women found your beautiful painting!

Paula said...

Oh San. I love this story. I DREAM of the people who will walk up to my paintings and buy. *sigh*

Guess I have to get busy and figure out how to get my work in the public eye. Task #1, right?

Great story.

Take care. I'm coming to Santa Fe next Sat for the Farmer's Market, will try to stop by the gallery on my way out of town.

Max Stone said...

Perfect story for me today and I thank you!

jameil1922 said...

lovely concept. hmmm... now let me think of how to apply it to my life. where there's a will there's a wall... i should paint a wall...

indicaspecies said...

Monique, whom you have described so well, is lucky for she found what she was seeking. The Spirit of Light is attractive and inviting.

Your sweet little post is having a delightful effect on my heart. Thank you San.

- celine

TheElementary said...

I too thought this would end badly.
What a super, super story to share. I love the title, the moral, and the ending. You said it so well.

Maggie May said...

Glad she got what she was looking for. Lovely picture.

Raven said...

I'm with Monique. This is a wonderful painting... and a wonderful story. Oh, how I wish I would win PCH already. I'd buy at least one of your paintings for certain. Monique is a true teacher, isn't she? And you had the wisdom to trust. Cool story on all counts.

Kim said...

Hi San,

Sorry I have been away from blogland for a little while...and only back for another little bit...I had to say I love this story! It is so funny!
And your very beautiful painting is living near me!

I also have the feeling Monique probably has the skills to get exactly what she wants in life...from you or the 'son of a beech'! :)

Thanks for the great view and the great story!

Carol said...

Slow to come back to "reality" after one trip or another, she finally emerges to say THANK YOU for the wonderful Always A Wall story.

Maybe if we look just right, there's always a (fill in the blank) for a (fill in the blank). Maybe. Just pondering the idea...

What an honor to have something you birthed gracing the walls of the homes of so many people!

A.Bananna said...

I really liked this post san! great job! you made my day today!!

have a great wednesday! Anna

Lori Skoog said...

San,
I, along with the rest of the world, love this story!
You sure do have a following and a great writing style.
Ironically, last night my husband and I were sending an email to a friend in China and we were trying to do the ranguage thing. Such fun.
Lori Skoog

San said...

Yes, Meg, as someone with far more writing skill than I said, "All's well that ends well."

:-D

San said...

Jeff, something tells me you have a great French accent.

San said...

Whim, how cool that you connected the title of the painting with the light needed in life. Just like you to do that. Thanks.

San said...

Paula, I look forward to seeing you!

San said...

Max, don't tell me. You've stolen Heather's eyes.

San said...

Jameil, you are going to paint some beautiful walls. I'm counting on it.

San said...

Celine, "a delightful effect on your heart"--that's what I'd call a nice side effect.

Thank you. Smile.

San said...

Yes, The Elementary, I believe we are all trained very well in skepticism.

We need a happy turn of events now and again, don't we?

San said...

Maggie May, yup, things turned out well for her. It was fun to play a small part in that.

San said...

Raven, you're right. Monique was a wonderful teacher!

And when the Clearing House rep knocks on your door, let me know immediately.

San said...

Kim, I thought about you when I was labeling the image of the painting with its location. Not far from Kim, I thought!

I've been a bit missing in action of late too. Business, houseguests, and rafting on the Rio Grande!

Hope you're enjoying your summer journeys in and out of Blogland.

San said...

Carol, welcome back from your travels! You've been missed.

I do believe there is a fill-in-the-blanks-with-whatever-fits lesson here. Now to fill in the blanks...

San said...

Anna, thank you!

And what a sweet new profile pic!

Happy Thursday. (I'm getting to this a bit late.)

San said...

Lori, the ranguage thing is fun! As are your visits.

Thank you for staying in touch. It means a lot to me.

John-Michael said...

Like slipping into a favorite cashmere sweater ... such is the reassuring comfort found in your skillful presentation of a timeless Truth. I sigh the breath of One who enjoys being at Home in your Spirit's warmth. Thank you, Dearest San.

Lovingly ...

Velvet Ginger said...

Everything you paint is absolutley beautiful. But you know that...thus the success of your gallery!

CoyoteFe said...

You have a nice touch. I like your blog, and I like Monique. I think I see why she liked your painting. It is always unexpected to run into people who know themselves.

Celebration of Life said...

I have my computer back and I have a new post! Have a great weekend!
Jo

San said...

John-Michael, such a lovely metaphor is your favorite cashmere sweater.

Your comment is most comforting, friend.

Love to you...

San said...

Rubye, you make me grin. Thank you!

San said...

Fe, it is "unexpected when we run into people who know themselves." You speak the truth.

San said...

Jo, congratulations on your computer being successfully nursed back to health.

And a fabulous weekend to you...

CHEWY said...

San, oh, San,
(big smile) Angel, bird, flight... the spirit wins the fight. Great post!

San said...

Chewy, your angel/bird/flight/spirit allusion is pure poetry.

Now I'm smiling. THANK YOU.

Poetikat said...

C'est magnifique!--the story and the painting.

I happened upon you at "This is My Patch". I shall return.

Kat - Purveyor of Poetry for the masses.

Poetikat said...

Oops! No. I got that all wrong. You found ME through Lavinia and I'm replying to you. Ha ha. Too many great blogs to visit (and yours is definitely one of them). I love how your phoneticized the French accent. Brilliant!

Kat

Peter said...

Hi! Terrific painting! But you wouldn't want me as a customer, as all our paintings are used to cover up the holes left by the kids.

However, if you did, would an Aussie putting on a fake french accent help win you over when it comes to getting my hands on one of your paintings? or would I be bashing my head up against a brick wall?

Take Care,
Peter

San said...

Kat, no matter your trajectory, I'm glad you landed here and anxiously await your return visits.

San said...

Peter, when it comes to an art acquisition, I find cash, an unusual accent, and a little head-banging are all components of a winning technique.

Tammie Lee said...

I love this story.
Tis written with a rhythm that held me to the end.

david mcmahon said...

I'm back from Malaysia, San - and I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed this post.

I agree with you. There is always a wall. Believe me.

San said...

Tammie Lee, thanks much for your kind words.

San said...

David, welcome back. My guess is you're back with a trove of brilliant photos.

Cris in Oregon said...

I love this story. It made me chuckle. So glad it worked out for both of you. lol

Shantanu said...

Ha, ha! Are all your customers this interesting? :)

Pat - An Arkansas Stamper said...

I've arrived here for the first (but not the last) time from David McMahon's authorblog Post of the Day. Your painting is beautiful, your narrative delightful, and your closing paragraph inspirational.

San said...

Cris, yes, I too laugh a bit when I think about the whole episode.

San said...

Shantanu, there's something about people who buy art. They tend to be rather interesting. Maybe it's because they allow themselves to be open to possibility.

San said...

Pat, thank you for such stampingly approving words!

Please do visit again.

indicaspecies said...

I dropped in to say hello and a bye for the moment. I hope all's well at your end. The Spirit of Light is definitely worth the admiration it has got here. See you in a few weeks San.:)

SandyCarlson said...

San,
Just want to thank you for taking the time to visit my blog and leave so many thoughtful comments.

San said...

Celine, I will miss you. Thank you for stopping by on your way to adventure.

San said...

Sandy, your blog is always a pleasure and I wish I got by there more often.

And I return the thanks to you. Sorry you stopped by here to the same old post. Time is tight this summer.

Daphne said...

An awesome story!

San said...

Daphne, we all love happy endings, don't we? Especially when it comes to finding homes for our art.

Angel... said...

San, I am back dear sorry I took too long..lots of new things are going with me.

i love your painting..its so amazing. I am now trying to find a wall at my home.

catch u later

San said...

Welcome back, Angel.

And thank you for your lovely compliment!

Angel... said...

Thanks San..actually I missed you guys alott

Anna said...

San this is the funniest, and I mean it, funniest post I read in days, lol, and you are right I can only see her speaking this adorable accent, lol. Thanks for sharing this story, Anna :)

BTW I added your blog to my blogs I visit if you don't mind.

Cookie Sunshine said...

a very important story.

San said...

Anna, do I mind? I'm honored. Thank you very much!

San said...

Cookie, a visit from you is a treat.

Blog Princess G said...

My word, but that lady has great taste. I love that painting!!!

San said...

Princess, you are too kind!