March 2015 UPDATE – Good News & Better News

March 22, 2015 by archiesmith



Good News and Better News



Dear Friends,


First the Good News – my back is continuing to heal nicely although not as quickly as my impatient self would wish. I had surgery last July (my fourth) but this one was a bit more serious. Had vertebra fused and had metal rods and screws inserted. (Have so much metal in my back that I fear I will be receiving alien transmissions at any moment).


Hadn’t thought much about it before, but my range of motion was significantly reduced. It is nothing, however, that I haven’t been able to adapt to. The pain is still there but is nothing that ibuprofen etc. and I can’t deal with. (Believe me, the alternative is simply not acceptable.) It is so much better than it was a year ago when I had to cancel the rest of my shows for 2014. I have learned through experience that if you ignore your so-called limitations and let your brain concentrate on what you want to do, you will figure out a way to do it.


Now for the better news – – after some years of trying, I have now been able to “check off a major point on my “Bucket List’” by being accepted to the SMITHSONIAN CRAFT SHOW in Washington, DC for 2015. The show will be held in Washington, April 22-26. I feel so very honored by this acceptance. I consider it to be, quite frankly, the pinnacle of my creative craft career. Little did I know when I began to make dulcimers in my basement workshop as a hobby back in the ‘70s, whilst I was teaching history at Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, N.C. that I would later be accepted to exhibit at the “Mecca” of American Crafts – The Smithsonian Craft Show – not only this, but a photo of one of my pieces is going to be on the show program! To express myself mildly, one could accurately state that I am pleased. (It would not be in the best taste, I suppose, to use the term ‘YIPPEE’!) For those who are in the area or would like to attend, I would be most pleased to show you my new, one-of-a-kind pieces.


Now for a recent true story that I must relate. I did several shows in Florida this spring and at one of the shows I was talking with a lady who was interested in one of my bowed psalteries. She was asking all manners of questions about the psaltery including a question about the warranty on the instrument. I explained that all of my instruments were guaranteed for my working life and as long as I was able to work if there was a problem she could send the instrument to me and I would either repair or replace it. An anxious look came over her face as she blurted, “How old are you”? You will be pleased, no doubt, to note that I restrained myself admirably and did not break out laughing.

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