A visit to Les Poissons Gallery is reminiscent of the Sunday drives of my childhood. Those of us of a certain age remember those drives when our parents piled us into the car to wander the country side with an occasional stop at a roadside market, scenic overlook or local tourist attraction. With gas prices hovering around 30 cents a gallon and long before seatbelts were installed in cars, all six children were loaded into our station wagon for a day-trip adventure. If my memory serves me correctly, the only person excited about these weekend explorations was my father as the rest of us were roused too early from our beds and were reluctant passengers in what we thought would be a very long, boring day. But these memories are over 50 years old and well-preserved lore over which my siblings and I reminisce.
I remember fall excursions to Butler’s Orchards in Darnestown for apples to make applesauce and apple butter.
Another weekend, we walked on the Appalachian Trail in western Maryland stopping at a picnic area to build a fire where we heated cans of apple juice and roasted hotdogs for lunch. I recall that it was freezing that day and the sweatshirts we wore were little comfort from the mountain winds, but the hot “cider” was a delicious treat.
I remember shutting my eyes and slurping a raw oyster freshly shucked on my Great Grandfather’s workboat in St. Michaels.
Rock climbing at Great Falls, leaf peeping on Skyline Drive, jaunts to Southern Maryland to see the Amish in their buggies and searching for ponies at Assateague…we were the weekend warriors!
So when I look at the paintings at the gallery, they trigger memories of those Sunday escapades. I look at Mike Budden’s beach scenes, and say, “I’ve been there!” I smell the brackish water and hear the frogs in Joseph Burrough’s Marsh Maze Ablaze, because I’ve been there. I hear the halyards flapping against the aluminum masts in Elaine Lisle’s Moored for the Night, because I’ve been there!
And yes, I have been there, on that boat beautifully captured in Docked in Annapolis by Julie Riker.
Morning Lane by John Eiseman
To trigger your own memories of past outings and places you long to be, please visit our gallery in Chestertown or shop virtually at www.lespoissonsgallery.com