Back in 2001, just before I left Alaska and the USA to return to Ireland, I took a last-minute whirlwind tour of the south. Along with my good friend RosaB, I flew into New Orleans and hired a car. From there we headed to Biloxi, Mississippi, over to Birmingham, Alabama, across Northern Florida and into Savannah, Georgia.
One of my lasting memories of the city was the sweltering heat – it was November and it was in the eighties. We took a carriage tour of the city and our driver apologised: ‘If only you’d come last week; the weather was warmer then’!
Savannah is laid out in squares – 21 if I remember rightly. And being in the South, it’s, well it’s so southern… polite. Yes ma’am. I have a morbid fascination with wars. And prisons. And cemeteries. And ghosts. I found this painting by Kathleen Gorenflo in a gallery on River Street. The widow in the picture is visiting her husband’s grave. He was killed during the Civil War sometime between 1861 and 1865 and you can just see his ghost behind the tombstone. The picture haunted me. I’ve been packing and unpacking it for eight years and now it finally is hanging up, on the wall. My wall. In my living room. In my flat. In Budapest.
It’s double-matted – the bottom mount is a pale green, which is now the colour of my walls. The frame is a goldish bronze tinged with a copper green. It’s not an antique but it has an ‘old-world’ look to it so I wanted an ‘old world’ feel to my living room. Take a look and see what else I found.