Material Witness will focus on extreme textile process. Images will be posted here showing the history of my work, new work, developing projects and inspiration.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Pastoral Car Lots

Ashcroft from the higway
Ashcroft Flowering Cactus

The actual cabin

Tim packed me into the car last night and we drove to Ashcroft. Ashcroft is a tidy little town on the banks of the mighty Fraser River and is in the desert. Rattlesnakes, Hoo Doos, cattle ranges and sand mountains filled with sagebrush.

We slept in the car and listened to wolves howl us to sleep last night. We woke up in the back of our van and I decided to go for a walk down the road and up an embankment. Tim went back to sleep.

I was greeted with hundreds of wild rose bushes, mountain asters, sundews and pearly everlasting mixed with little cactus. I climbed up the embankment to get a good sniff of rose and juniper and much to my surpise I started to fall back down faster than my feet or my balance could manage. Backwards! It occured to me that no one really knew where I was and the road was almost 25 miles from any other people. It also occured to me that I was in bear, cougar and wolf country. Tim was still asleep!

So, instead of falling ass over tea kettle, I leaned my large form forward and put both arms out in front and with completely unexpected grace slid down the 35 feet like a slalom skier. Something I haven't attempted for 30 years. The bottom came faster than expected and my heels hit with a force throwing me back at the bank and not on my head.

The day got more interesting.

We went to see a property that can only be described as perfect. Off nearly alone in ranch country on the edge of a desert with a little creek running through it. Greetings came from a yellow bellied marmit, deer and fritillary butterflies. The house is an old log homesteaders cabin with real mud chinking in the logs. We arrived past the hill and discovered...the biggest chop shop in the world. Cars were lined up at least ten deep and wide enough to disappear behind a ridge. The property was to be on an agreement with the neighbour and owner, perhaps, of the cars.

We looked around wondering about the environmental impact of that many cars and drove away only to be followed full blast by two men with waist length hair and a big truck. We decided to be friendly and the men got out of the car looking even scarier. They were accompanied by a gorgeous child and dogs. They were lovely. They were afraid we were messing with their cars.

One is a carver and one a bass player for a country rock band. They fix cars and make a living.
So we leaned on cars and spit in the dirt and compared children and experiences with angry bulls. They said they were going to do a crush on the cars and move them to the section of the 40 acres that would belong to them. They wanted me to tell them about extreme textiles and to drag us back to their house to show us the camcorder shots they were doing of the local wild life.

"Just don't act like prey!"

"Good idea!"

We got an invitation to a smash up 50th birthday party next weekend.

The kid piped in that he wasn't allowed to attend because his mom thinks it will be too wild and the bikers will come. He was disappointed because at eleven he was really looking forward to gettin' drunk. I laughed and told him to drink green tea that it worked better.

They sweetly escorted us back down the hill and told us about the tea room in Ashcroft. One of the fellows slipped me his phone number and e-mail. He has a satellite dish.

So that is how I skied backwards down a little cliff, found nirvana and got a date all in one hour this morning.

Tonight I sleep in my own little bed again and dream about what it would be like living inside a real live car lot 25 miles in the bush!

Paper mache dries in less than an hour in the desert and there are rusty bits everywhere!everywhere

1 comment:

arlee said...

OOOOO I am SO envious!!! I LOVE that area---used to camp in a valley in Clinton near by, every Aug and feel such an affinity to that sub-desert landscape! I didn't know there were HooDoos there though!
Your neighbours actually sound as if it would be a safe area to live in---respect them and they respect you :}
And what could also be more perfect then both natural beauty *and* RB's???????
As for the slide, i bet secretly it was exhilirating :} I DO hope you have suffered nothing as a result though!