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Nothing Could Be Finer

Perhaps that is a slight exaggeration, however, this past weekend was pretty darn nice.

Friday, it rained early, and lots. In fact, I'd only just finished mowing the lawn, with garden chores remaining, when the sky began to darken. Within minutes the rain came down, fast and furious, hanging around for much of the day. I took the opportunity to pick up prints from Mr. Roger's house, but as you can already guess, I didn't get around to the signing until late Saturday. Nothing like a little pressure to get me moving!!

Most of you already know that my son, Bill Peck is quite the guitar player, that is, when he's not working in banking. A mildly rebellious teen, we bought Bill's first guitar from a newspaper ad, followed by another one from a pawn shop. I'm thinking he was maybe 14? Anyway, Bill took to guitar like a duck takes to water. Poor David, his twin brother who shared the bedroom, had to put up with Bill practicing six to seven hours every day! Throughout the years Bill has been with various bands, once even opening for 'N Sync at the Superdome in New Orleans. For one reason or another, none of the bands ever really worked out, and fortunately Bill was smart enough to realize that although his playing is amazing, making money doing so would be a life-long challenge. He got an Economics degree at Rollins, and his day job for the last years has been in banking. But, once a musician, always a musician, so when the opportunity arose to reunite with Sam Stone, his former band mate, to perform as part of a benefit concert at the House of Blues, he said YES!
Strange that they asked them to do acoustic because Bill really rocks electric, however, as it turns out, the seven songs they did were terrific. They both look pretty intense don't they? I'm thinking this is one reason they often clashed!
He was not too thrilled that they were the opening act, going on at 7:30 sharp, but I sure was! Bruce and I drove to Downtown Disney a little early, eating for the first time at the House of Blues restaurant. Not bad, but we were rushed and did not order a full meal, so I can't vouch for the whole menu. Anyway, before leaving the house I remembered a time we went to Hard Rock Live to see Bill perform and I was not allowed to bring my Nikon inside the venue. Walking back to the car with it was not an option. Bruce begged the door folks and they allowed me to go in with the promise that I would not use it. I didn't because we all know I'm a rule follower!

So, recalling that event, I phoned HOB, asking about their policy. Same deal; the only exceptions were for those with a photo pass. How do you go about getting one? Ask. I called Bill, he talked to the stage manage,r and Voila! I had my pass waiting at the Will Call window. So far, so good. I packed the new Nikon, a lens or two, and at the VERY LAST MINUTE, the Olympus with the 20mm lens. A few miles from home I said to Bruce, "I wonder how much battery life I have on the Nikon?" Checking, it looked like about half full. WELL, that was a misreading if ever there was one. Just as the curtains opened, the battery died. Thank God I had the Olympus with me! This was the only time I've ever been allowed to get up close to the stage and all I have is a fixed lens, albeit a fast one. Duh! A fully charged battery was sitting on my desk! I took a bunch, hoping for a few good ones, and thankfully that was the case. Because the photo pass only allows you to photograph the first three songs, I took this one from the crowd.
Instead of some close ups of Bill playing, I had to settle, however, I was darn lucky to get any! Afterwards I took this shot of David, Fallon's (Bill's latest girlfriend) brother, Julian and Bill. Oftentimes I don't realize how much alike they look because Bill typically has longer hair and David weighs a little more, but with Bill's hair pulled back, the nose, eyes, ears, lips, they all looks alike. It really struck me while looking at this photo, which I had to convert to black and white because the lighting made them all look red!
So, Bill has come a long way from having a pawn shop guitar--see above link. Afterwards we met David and Michelle at a cool place on Sand Lake Road called, Vines--a very adult place to hang out, which both Bruce and I appreciated!

Saturday, our own Florida State Seminoles, well, not really ours, but, because both Matthew and Jonathan graduated there, we call them ours, won their first big game of the season. Woohoo! It was a pleasure to see them beat the pants off of Wake Forest after having lost to them four times in the last six seasons. It's too early to say for sure, but the team sure looks like those of old.

We went to the strangest art opening downtown on Saturday night. Hardly anyone there, and just plain odd. It happens. The artist was Decoy, one of my favorite local street artists, however, I did not even see him there.....

Because there was rain again on Saturday, we set up at the market with trepidation. Mr. Bruce puts up the sides, which is a real pain, for what he calls "insurance" against having rain. By golly, it worked, and with the cooler temperatures there were lots of folks. Now, I know it is easy to say that my slow summer was because of the extreme heat, but, folks, it's not as easy for me to accept that. BUT, you were right because I had some buyers, and more importantly, new buyers who had never seen my work!! Because I have so many repeat customers, this is definitely a good thing. Strangely enough, this photo, taken just as a market shot shows off the purchased pieces before they found a new home.
The canvas on the outside, the big orange and green one, AND the set of three green flower on blue sold. Plus, loads of paper prints. Let's see, checking my sales book just now.... I had to go back to February 12th of this year to find the last time I sold anything near this amount at Lake Eola. Hip hip hurray! Plus, my niece Katie and her boyfriend Joe came to visit,
Although I have another photograph with them looking straight at the camera, this is the one that makes me happy. We met Joe at the little birthday party for me in December at Katie's parents, and I'm so glad that things are working out for the two of them.

The weather is slightly cooler, as I've mentioned, but still pretty darn hot. Thus, after the big day yesterday I was drained both mentally and physically, going to bed early and falling asleep in seconds. After a long summer's nap, I am ready for a brand new week! Bruce is working from home today before being gone for the rest of the week so I'm soaking up his presence while I can.

When folks ask me about my photography skills, I always tell them they are minimal. This is in no way an attempt at modesty, merely the truth. If you've been reading this blog for any length of time, you know I'm not exaggerating, and if you need further evidence, see this post!

Given another opportunity to photograph Bill on stage, you'd better believe I'll have a fresh battery with me. Learning from my mistakes--now that will be the real test!
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