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T’is the season: Bell, Salinero, and some Reminiscing

Just Because

"Life's splendor forever lies in wait about each one of us in all its fullness but veiled from view, deep down, invisible, far off. It is there, though, not hostile, not reluctant, not deaf. If you summon it by the right word, by its right name, it will come."

Franz Kafka

With Christmas around the corner, December is once again on its final stretch. This may be the perfect time to reminisce a bit about all the good things as well as the not-so-good things we got to experience in 2021. "How did it get so late so soon?" –Dr. Seuss.

Calmness - ©NLew 2021

Starting with the insurrection at the Capitol on January 6, many Americans were dumbfounded about the events taking place -- all to overturn a perfectly legal election. Never in our lifetime did we expect to see a mob -armed and ready- storming the national seat of government. The fact that the coup was averted doesn't make it any less bitter because let us not forget that 4 people died that day. #januar6 #capitolinsurrection #whitesupremacy

Snow Leopards

The pandemic created by Covid19 is still in full force, and even though testing and vaccines are now readily available, we still have ways to go. claimed on December 18, 2021, that 62% of Americans were actually fully vaccinated. Not really a number to brag about. Covid does not spare our animal friends neither. In November, three snow leopards named Ranney, Everest, and Makalu died at the Lincoln Children's Zoo in Nebraska of complications from Covid-19. #Sad #vaccinate #wearamask

We've had to deal with extreme weather patterns due to climate change (even though some still believe that too is a hoax …). Still, we cannot set aside the disasters created by extreme cold, heat, fire, rain, hurricanes, tornadoes … Even this winter in Florida seems to be different … warmer … wetter … Annoyingly so.


But good things too happened. We decided to celebrate thanksgiving in Key Largo. I had never been to the Keys, and it was one of my bucket lists of things to do. So, I got to see the Mile Marker 0 on Key West and the Southernmost Point in the Continental US (90 miles to Cuba). Okay …. Okay … a bit corny there … the standing in line to catch that "perfect" picture next to the marker …. Key West, on the other hand, is beautiful. Full of history, writers –Ernest Hemingway and Tenessee Williams among others--.

Ferron Bell, a Whimsical painter from Fire Pines Island, NY, moved to Key West in his later years. He was known as Key West's Salvador Dali. I reckon the weather must have gotten to him at some point. He never really achieved financial stability and missed the pines greatly. He communicated with the residents continuously throughout his stay in the Keys. He opened a gallery called "Ferrondippity" but continued to struggle financially. His health began to decline. He never really left the Pines and planned a return in 2013, but it was not meant to happen. Shortly after, he passed away, leaving a legacy of his art reminding people that Ferron Bell, artist, painter, was here and that he made a difference…

Sal Salinero, an internationally renowned fourth-generation native Key Wester, is considered an "Island treasure." He divided his time between his studios in Boulder, Colorado, and Key West, Florida, and is one of Key West's favorite artists. His paintings of wildlife and tropical foliage and flowers reflect his understanding of the subject matter as he lived there most of his life. His paintings are simple, colorful. They mostly depict a world of beautiful birds, flowers, and sun-drenched landscapes of the rainforest and tropical regions he is so familiar with. He is a definite "must recommend looking into further …. 😎”

In short, Key West is definitely a great vacation destination. I’d move there on a whim were it not super expensive to live there. Who knows, maybe when I start selling my art (😉😉😉) …

Oh, and last but not least, one of my birthday presents was a ticket to the Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit” in Orlando, Florida. I went with my daughter (she gifted me the ticket) and a friend, and it was nothing short of fantabulous. A must-see if it ends up exhibiting in your area.

We have, once again, come to the end of this column. But before I go, I’d like to mention that “The Witcher” by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski has been made into a fantastic tv series available to watch on Netflix. (And no, I am not getting paid to endorse this …) Just throwing this out there.

Wine and Candles- ©NLew 2021

Life is too short to wake up with regrets.

So, love the people who treat you right.

Forget about those who don't.

Believe everything happens for a reason.

If you get a chance, take it.

If it changes your life, let it.

Nobody said life would be easy,

They just promised it would most likely be worth it.

--Harvey Mackey—

I wish all who celebrate Christmas a fantastic and merry celebration, a great end of the year, and a better 2022. Stay safe. Stay healthy (masking up is simple and helps keep you and others healthy). Get vaccinated. And above all, be kind. Until next year peoples of the page. Namaste.

"Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts."

― Charles Dickens

Artistic Expression Quotes Goodreads. from the author: ALL IMAGES shown in this column are courtesy of NLew/Reflectionsandstuff. All artwork of NLew is ©NLew. All other images belong to the respective artists and/or the galleries/museums that own them and are used here under the creative commons license for instructional purposes/non-commercial use without modifications of which the sole purpose is the sharing of art only. (In this case Wikimedia Art)

Please note that if you want to copy/use any material/photo from this website you may need the permission of the owner/s. Please respect this and do not misuse them. Again, respect Artists' copyrights, please. Never forget to mention the source. As always, I am thankful for your patronage.

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