purple neck

Summer Smiles

I’m really trying to write something every week that’s worth reading.

I have big plans to keep introducing you to the artists we work with that make our shop so special. I am going to convince Jen to do some photo and video shoots showing you how we like to wear our wraps and tie our scarves. I promise these things will happen.

But somehow, SUMMER AFTER THE PANDEMIC has begun, and that’s where my words are today.

I write this knowing that we are not past this horrible thing. I write it fully vaccinated…for now. I write it as I watch families gathering and laughing even though their Memorial Day weekend was awash. Rain and wind and cold temperatures could not dampen the joy all around me in Kennebunkport this week. Live music. Dinner with friends. And smiles.

That’s what keeps resonating as I contemplate the new now. We have worked diligently to show our feelings through a pair of eyes above a swath of fabric for so long, and now we are seeing smiling faces again!

When our smiles meet, connections are quicker, humor needs no explanation, and pain has nowhere to hide. The word fellowship comes to mind.

As we continue to be careful, cautious, and considerate with our friends and neighbors, there are happy dances all around me. And hugs.

I am so excited to see your faces again, and as Amy and Ed and Dan and Cindy will tell you, I may not recognize you at first. Please don’t take it personally. I too, have been watching the world from behind a mask for over a year, while meeting new people every single day. And have I ever mentioned that I am face blind?

I used to hide it by forgetting to wear my glasses or contacts, and using that as an excuse. When Jen and I were at art shows for almost twenty years, she would whisper in my ear, “that’s Joe, we’ve been out to dinner with him 3 times!” And as for Jen, she swears that she won’t go away from me for more than a few days at a time. She is certain that, after 25 years, I will forget who she is! At fifty-one, I’m trying to come clean.

When we meet in the shop or at an art show, our conversations are real. Jen and I watched “salespeople artists” decades ago and promised to alert one another if we ever slipped into that behavior. We are who you meet, the fun we have in our little visits is real, the laughter is sincere. So, if you’ll just bring up something from our last conversation, it’s almost like your face magically comes into focus for me. It’s weird, but it’s true.

As summer rolls along, I hope you will get a chance to stop in and say hello. And I hope you get to share laughter, hugs, and music with the people who have been too far away, or just behind a mask.

4 Responses to Summer Smiles

  1. Julie Ann June 1, 2021 at 4:36 pm #

    “i too, have been watching the world from behind a mask”… as an individual who has been seen by you, thank you. Being seen, with or without a mask, and with some JAK goodness draped on my body, feels so good! xo

    • Tanya June 2, 2021 at 8:08 am #

      Thank you! Not only for your sweet note, but for doubling the readership of the JAK blog 🙂
      Looking forward to seeing your face live and in-person very soon.

  2. Jack June 2, 2021 at 2:28 pm #

    Oh my gosh…face blindness…so mortifying. I suffer right along with you. Is it okay to just start saying things like, “would you mind contextualizing your beautiful face for me??? What did we laugh about the last time we met?” If they can’t answer that, then maybe it’s not MY fault I forgot your face. It didn’t laugh! 🙂

    • Tanya June 2, 2021 at 3:31 pm #

      Jack, I can’t wait to try your “contextualize your beautiful face” line! Thanks for checking out the blog.

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