Monday, July 18, 2011

Cutting the Stencils

Routine changes. The 100+ temps have finally broken, and a cool breeze is blowing. We soon learn the downside of this blessed relief: a category 2 storm is on its way to Baja, complete with high winds and torrential rain. Just in time for our outdoor event. Oh yeah.

But we welcome the relief, pray for the storm to disperse, and get on task. We have about 15 hours of work ahead of us, before the event begins, and in real time, only about 9. But we have our design, our word, and a jury-rigged table to work on, with 3 mat knives.

Divide and conquer: those not teaching workshops will start drawing and cutting the stencils. Those teaching classes must join them as soon as possible. By 4 pm, we are all at it, cardboard flying in all directions, in spite of not-so-great mat knives.

The kids sense our energy, and flock to our room; we assign bouncers to keep them out. With the sharp mat knives, the need for concentration and speed, we can’t risk little ones tugging at our sleeves, or bigger ones flirting with our girls!

We are to meet with the dancers and musicians at 6 at the main square, for final set up and a review of the program. A frame would be waiting for us there, so we could stretch the canvas for the graffiti wall. Could we finish, transport the wall to the square, and frame it, by 6? More or less, I hedged, promising to let everyone know by 5 if we were on track.

My own questions were: when would we finish? How were we integrating the dancers into this? Did we have enough paint? Would the winds be too high? What could we use for a drop cloth to protect the town’s stage? Did my artists, none of whom had ever done this before, have the wherewithal to pull it off? Would the stencils actually work?!

To be continued...

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