Barn red rain boots

I'm fortunate to have landed an artist residency spot at Hambidge this spring. Christine, who I suspect I am going to call the "resident wrangler", sent an email saying we should pack boots because it rains a lot there this time of year. I'm from the west. This is what I got out to pack:


Emily, who is from Mississippi, laughed a bit and mentioned that perhaps she had meant rain boots. So I went online and found out that there IS such a thing as rain boots. Who knew?! I have lived in the western USA almost all of my life and believe me, we have no need for these things. But I couldn't resist these:

They are barn red with chickens on them. I am thrilled. (I have no idea when I will wear them once I return from Georgia though.)

Then a kind student of mine from the South mentioned that perhaps indeed Christine had meant waterproof hiking boots. So now I have to bring both the barn red boots and the hiking boots. I'm definitely taking a hike on the Appalachian trail while I'm there anyway, so hikers were needed. You can't come so close to the AT for a couple weeks and not hike on that iconic landmark. At least not if your heart's deepest secret is to do long-distance hikes whenever possible. (Shhh. Don't tell.)

So I'm headed to Georgia this month for a couple weeks as artist-in-residence at Hambidge. I am thrilled to have this opportunity as competition was stiff this spring. I'll also have the opportunity to visit Penland School of Crafts and see the marvelous work that the students there are doing with Tommye Scanlin and Bhakti Ziek... and I hope visit the miraculous Milissa Ellison Dewey, antique weaving/spinning equipment restorer, bobbin maker, wood turner, and weaver extraordinaire (seriously, that woman has more energy and talent than anyone I have ever met).

Sloshers and hiking boots in tow, I will manage whatever Georgia can throw at me... except tornados. I don't know what I'd do in a hurricane or a tornado. Do they get those in the mountains*? (Black bears and mountain lions however, those are welcome sightings... just keep me clear of the nasty water-filled weather!)

*I remember tornado drills when I was a kindergartener at my elementary school in Columbia, MO shortly before my parents moved us (thankfully) to New Mexico. I distinctly remember the teachers having us crouch with our arms over our heads right under a long row of internal glass windows that looked into the administration offices. Even as a 5-year-old that seemed really weird to me. I have vowed I would never live anywhere with tornados since... though sometimes they are seen in Colorado.