Last night we tore down the Vasa Park show, and it felt like the last day of school. So many hugs, and "let's keep in touch", a few tears, lots of phone numbers being passed back and forth as we packed up and headed off. As I mentioned before, Sue is selling the show, and it was her very last one. We've had a lovely run for many years together and it felt like family.
Of course, many of us will run into each other at other shows here and there. Familiar faces as we travel some of the same paths. But this was a special group and it just won't be quite the same.
Actually, all week was a fizzle. Sales were lousy, customers were sparse, even a bunch of the usual artists were missing. Sort of like the air had already escaped the balloon. Or exactly like the last week of school, when lots of kids had already snuck out for family trips, schedules were different, teachers could care less - just wanting to get it over with and start their own vacations. It had a completely different feel and all the usual routines were gone. Part breathless anticipation for what was next and part sadness for what was never to be again.
I think it's probably a good thing, this unexpected kick in the pants, to shake things up and re-think the "usual." Because the same old routine quickly becomes a rut, and thinking outside the box or trying new ways of doing things gets shoved aside for what's comfortable and easy. We'll all have to come up with new shows, or new schedules, or new ways of marketing, or even new ventures altogether. Lots of talk about retiring, new part time jobs, different work.
Somehow I don't feel afraid, or worried, or upset -- about the money. I do think something better will come out of all this. It just doesn't feel that way yet. It still feels like I'm going to be missing something. So as we all head off to college (or beauty school) in the fall, I really hope I can keep in touch with my bestest friends better than I did the first time around.