Friday, May 16, 2008

Carlo's Birthday Gift

Wednesday was my old friend Carlo Pittore's birthday. Friend and fellow artist Susie Drucker forwarded this e-mail with images to me this morning. Thankyou again, Susie! Carlo's spirit is alive and well!!!

May 14, 2008

This morning I left home for a meeting in Bangor. Traveling north on I-95 I experienced unexpected car problems that needed immediate attention. The first exit off the highway was in Bowdoinham. I have not been to Bowdoinham much in the past couple of years. However, from my years living in Bowdoinham I am familiar with the local auto repair shop, and while there it occurred to me that today was Carlo Pittore’s birthday. Without a car, and some time to kill, I walked up the Post Road to Merrymeeting Farm. I had walked that road many times with Carlo. I remember him singing along that same stretch of road, “There are only two seasons in Maine!..." on his birthday, on a day not unlike today, many years ago. I remember him being extra frisky on his birthdays, excited about the arrival of warmer weather and happy to put the long Maine winter behind him. Upon arriving at the farm this morning, there was a woman in the parking area who was about to depart. Her name is Julie; she is an ex-yurter, friend, and former model of Carlo’s. She now lives out of state, and returned to Maine only yesterday for the first time in more then 15 years. She too was somewhat mysteriously drawn to the farm this morning on her way to Lewiston. She did not remember that today was CP’s birthday and she had only recently learned of his death. She remembered the day as the approximate date of the Valerian Festival held by the Bowdoinham Valerian Society in the field at Merry Meeting Farm. Some may remember the festival was held quasi-annually in mid May and more closely coincided with the birthday of its founding member and host (Carlo) than the actual spring bloom in Bowdoinham. Nonetheless it was always a grand event. Many of the yurts have now expired and Julie remarked on how the central steel ring that framed the skylight of her old yurt is all that remains of her once home. The ring of her yurt (and the yurt where I lived) now hang together from the limb of a pine tree. The last yurt that Carlo lived in still stands. It’s in disrepair and has not been lived in since he moved out. Julie and I spoke only for a few minutes before she climbed into her car with bits of grass from the field in her hair and clothes. I then took my turn visiting the field and the yurts. I took a few pictures of Carlo’s remaining items in and around his yurt. I was several hours delayed in getting to my meeting; the car repair was much more expensive then I had anticipated, but it was a good day.


Reed Bartlett

1 comment:

Ron Hunt said...

Happy birthday, Carlo. You are not forgotten.