What can possibly be romantic about a working honeymoon in the middle of nowhere? And besides, Dan is inviting various members of his family to share the time with us, so the prospect sounds more and more like a working-group-honeymoon-with-people-I-don’t-know-in-the-middle-of-nowhere! All I really want is an interlude to rest and romance with my new husband.
I’d much rather wait for Paris, even if our “real” honeymoon is a ways off, as we build our special Paris savings account to fund our dream. While working our day jobs at artCentral, the Library and R-9, all our loose change and our “art monies” realized from both our art sales and commissions are being tucked away. As soon as we have enough, we’ll make our reservations, cover our commitments, enlist Emily to house sit and off we’ll fly. I can wait for Paris.
For now David keeps encouraging me to stay open to Dan’s proposal. David has his reasons. Dan is a successful Kansas City entrepreneur launching his cowboy-themed Chuck Wagon Café, a new restaurant in the heart of the Flint Hills. He wants to generously commission David to restore and frame the large, vintage western-themed murals he’s purchased at auction, and he wants to put us up at Clover Cliff Ranch, the finest B&B in that part of the country.
Over twenty years David’s completed several art commissions for Dan’s venues. He’s also worked for Dan as a chef, an oysterman and a maître d’. David assures me Dan has impeccable taste in creating all his ventures, treats his people very well and that working with him is fun and satisfying.
I’m still not sold, but I keep listening and learn that Kansas is not all flat, arid and boring. Kansas is much more than the broken down farm where Dorothy got blown away in a terrible tornado. According to world-travelled Dan and many other adventurers, the rolling Flint Hills and the last major unbroken stand of tall grass prairies are considered to be one of God’s most enchanting creations.
While pondering our Kansas possibility, I get an email from our Carthage Press managing editor attesting to this claim. John Hacker writes, “I love Strong City. Been there and to Cottonwood Falls many times. My mother's family lived in Augusta, Kansas, and we lived in Harrisonville, Missouri, so we made that trip dozens of times when I was a kid. I need to go out some spring and shoot a thunderstorm from that overlook southwest of town.”
I like John, a lot. Maybe he knows something I need to learn. Next week I’ll let you know if we find our way to the Flint Hills of Kansas.
In the meantime stop in at artCentral to see “The Beauty of Betsy Pauly”. Checkett & Pauly, P.C. are the generous underwriters for this exhibition of exquisite watercolor and ink paintings.
All purchase proceeds go to the BETSY PAULY FUND for artCENTRAL.
Gallery hours: Fridays & Saturdays 12:00-5:00, Sundays 1:00-5:00, All other days call (417) 358-4404 to schedule a visit.