After the Storm
Updated: Nov 8, 2021
Spending four hours under a fragile canopy during a series of rain storms and wind gusts serves as a powerful reminder as to just how delicate and vulnerable we and our material goods really are.
I went out to Bayou Boogaloo determined to put the ghosts of the worst disaster of my art career firmly to bed. The first two days were everything I could have hoped for. The crowds were happy and friendly. Sales were good. The weather was warm with lots of cooling gusts blowing off the bayou. It was exhausting, but a good couple of days.
Sunday threatened a different sort of day. The weather forecasts went back and forth. Some of the vendors packed up and left Saturday. I absolutely don't blame them. I thought about doing the same, but realized that if I did, I would probably regret it (especially if the rain never came).
The rain did come, however. Having learned my lesson the previous year, all my art was carefully packed away. I lowered my canopy to the lowest setting. The corners were all carefully weighted down, and then I waited. I sat through the rain and the wind, sorting through the memories of the year before when I sat in almost that exact same location on the same weekend, confronted by soaking artwork and a twisted canopy.
I've weathered storms before: Katrina, Gustav, the flooding of 2016. By now, you'd think I'd remember the lesson: that everything is ephemeral. Our material goods, the meat suits we wear; everything is temporary, but I realize that sometimes we need to repeat things. I need to be reminded just how unimportant these cozy little nests that we build ourselves are.
I can lose material goods. I can see things that I've worked hard on; loved; been proud of; I can see them all destroyed and lost. It hurts, but I can get through to the other side.
I can weather the storm just like I did last year and just like I did on Sunday. Eventually, the weather cleared. The storm passed. The music started and the people came.
Destruction is inevitable. Everything is temporary, but we are more than just our possessions, more than just these meat suits that we wear.
The Star promises us that our spirit is resilient and what we really need is with us always.
Let the world crash in around us. Look within and remember what really matters. Be the Star of your own reality.