Work, work, work… with Rita Andreeva

Even Broke Artists Have to Get Away Once in a While

 

Rita Takes a Short Vacation

“I got help from above (literally) and caught the eclipse on videoafter I have almost given up and was waiting to board the bus to Seattle:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQcTlUR_bf4

I am sure it took some divine intervention to thin out the clouds just in the right spot at the right moment, since I only was able to film a few seconds of it after walking around Wenatchee completely disgusted for hours. Every time I looked at the sky it was overcast and raining.

Just before boarding the bus back to Seattle I texted Eva saying that I wasted the trip for nothing, but she said, “It’s doing it now!” So I climbed up the stairs to the parking lot with a good view of the sky and sure enough – clouds parted just for a few moments so I could film the eclipse and be happy! No one else on my bus was able to catch it, I was the only one.

My trip started out not so good. I ordered a ticket to Leavenworth, because that was the only place the weather report said was going to be cloudy, partially sunny. First thing, as I got to the train station at about 8 am I had 50 min to kill and I was hungry and went to the only coffee shop around there that was open, but there was a huge bunch of school kids that ran up to order stuff before me, so I did indeed kill the 50 minutes, since that’s how long it took for that whole class to get their lattes. And to make the matters worse, the barista made a latte for a guy who was after me in line before I got mine. So I expected problems to continue. Sure enough, when I got off the bus in Leavenworth the sky was just as overcast as in Seattle. So I paid additional $26 and got back on the bus to Wenatchee.

I hated Wenatchee right away: first, a ditsy blond almost ran me over as I was crossing the street on the Walk light. Then I couldn’t find anything opened except a church where everyone was Mexican and everything was in Spanish. I kept walking, and finally found a restaurant that was open, and I had a long lunch. The soup was good, but the rest of the food was way horrible and way overpriced. I walked around downtown and on river trail after lunch. It was very overcast there too and started raining as I was just starting to enjoy my walk and filming the art exhibit. I went to the Wenatchee library to check my email and encountered the most disorganized and incompetent librarian on this planet. When I finally, after 3 times of coming back to the librarian’s desk and explaining to them how it would really be nice if they printed the guest access code on a little piece of paper with some instructions instead of just giving one a code that never worked, I finally got on line, but left immediately, because it smelled horribly of sweaty feet, booze and puke. There were no alternatives, everything in historic downtown Wenatchee was closed. I walked around enjoying the most stupid display windows I’ve ever seen hand painted sloppily on the glass. Like: “It’s good as gold but dirt cheap” and “Childrens clothing and tobacco” and “Tax tax can’t pay it sale”.

I did get involved for a few minutes in a treasure hunt game. I sat first at an outside table at a cafe that was closed, of course. And a minute later a woman sat down with a kid. They were a part of the game. There were 4 teams of kids. When they reached us a woman gave them a piece of paper with further instructions which said: “Take a penny and trade it for something bigger and better from a total stranger.” I was the only stranger for miles. So I ended up trading 3 pennies for 3 teams for nickles. In the case of the fourth team I gave them the useless map of Wenatchee. They were losing too, but because the map was bigger, and then they traded it for birch log from a bum who pulled it out of some display thing, they won that round, since it was the biggest damned thing that anyone dragged in. I wasn’t paying much attention, but, thinking back on it, I wish I filmed it all. It was so stupid, it was funny. There were no strangers anywhere on the avenue. I should have guessed! I was the only stranger in town. Well, it was purely by accident that I gave those kids the map. I got it at the library, but had no use for it and had no more nickles left.

I guess, looking back, I did have fun, even though, at the time, I didn’t think I did. I thought I was lonely and stuck somewhere weird. But as I was watching the mountains passing by my bus window, watching the trees and the old snow and the river go by, I realized how much I lived and experienced from 7 am until 7 pm. And how full of life and energy I was as compared to doing nothing, staying at home. Even though I was tired, when I got home, I was still energized, and still am at 1:25 am. I discovered a bit of truth about life as I followed through with my trip, determined that I was going to have fun, no, to be alive and present. And even though I lapsed into occasional self-pity, I still lived more fully than if I hadn’t done it at all.

So I discovered that it’s okay to be sad about unfulfilled stuff, but if one were truly opened, god opened up the clouds and let me have a few seconds of what I came here for – a shot of the eclipse. And everything was all right then, and the sight of the black circle creeping over the sun was awesome, even if it only lasted a couple of seconds.

The main thing I got out of it was: we need to venture out and have adventures. Being stuck in a rut is the worst thing ever. And the only thing we will regret on our deathbed is not making mistakes, but not making enough mistakes!”  – Rita

Photo by Carl Nelson

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