A window with a different view, a bird feeder with a slight variation of birds, new rooms to arrange furniture, different community and culture, ease of visitations with family, a golden retriever and a chocolate lab joining on walks and at our side. Many changes occurred in 2016. After living out of state for a number of years, the year 2016 was the year of coming back home. In a way, it was like stepping into a suit I once wore, but it not fitting, the fabric familiar in appearance and feel, but the stitching something before I never took note of. I was adapting though, and my body and mind were finally easing and beginning to find comfort in my new home.
Do you hear it, the rattling of tins and old pales, the banging on skillets, the clatter of bones? The sound of Rough Music?
“The Rough Band played on occasions such as a marriage which the village considered reprehensible, or in cases of adultery, incest, wife – or husband – beating. Although its’ playing was nearly always reserved for sexual offences, unpopularity of any sort sometimes called out Rough Music. It was used to ‘drum a man out of the village’ if his offence had been a gross one.”
-Evans, George Ewart. The Pattern Under the Plough: Aspects of the Folk Life of East Anglia, p. 110
As I move into the New Year, amongst the worries and fears that echo across the country, I first aim to follow my heart.
I’ve taken an interest in woodcarving, and my first class begins this evening. In preparation, I’ve collected my chisels and gouges, some new, and some old. To feel the “pleasure” of carving through the wood, I must first find pleasure in the process of sharpening.
As I sharpen the curved edges of my tools, I sharpen my character as well. Winter is a choice time for this. Reading new books and learning new bits of history, experimenting with new fingerings and styles on the guitar, and discovering new fiddle tunes. Which reminds me, I’ve opened my heart’s door to a region specific fiddle. I never knew I’d take interest in a Hardanger fiddle until I moved to Stoughton, WI. While I’m here in this town that identifies greatly with Norwegian culture I might as well take in as much of the heritage as I can. My Grandpa would be proud.
It’s nice to envision a future, but things can change, and they can change fast. So today I’m going live and try to notice how beautiful the view out the window is, and how lucky I am to be able to watch the birds, and how grateful I am to have a roof over my head, and how awesome it is that I can take a wood class in my small town, and how easy it is to have a meal with family, and how comforting it is to have a couple of worry-free dogs laying beside me...
...and I better pull out the old pots and pans too.
Madeline Fendrick and Brian Peck
We're happy to share with you stories from our journey as artists. Stories from the road, and stories from our home base in Stoughton, WI.
Logo Art by:
Robert Peck (Brian's Dad)
Cover Photos by: