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Fiona Graham-Mackay



  • Writer's pictureFiona Graham-Mackay


Updated: May 10, 2018

The weather was atrocious but it just goes to show, you don't need the sun to shine for the magic to happen.

Taormina is a magical place to start which helps.

The hotel was splendid. My beautiful apartment had stunning sea views, snow capped Etna quietly bubbling away, spring flowers well ahead of us and the air smelled of ozone, Sicily and lemon trees everywhere, we drew and sucked (eyes smarting) and made thirsty for gin which we decide smells like turpentine and why perhaps we painters tend to drink quite a lot of it.

It really did rain, great sheets and swathes scudding across the bay. Water streaming down the mountainside, waterfalls truly from the Gods, gushing through streets channeled by tiny barriers, directing its flow downwards, downwards somewhere, away from us. The amphitheatre presides at the top of the town, yawning, clearly used to such things.

But the sun did shine brilliantly at times and when it did the land was hot and steamy as were we as we worked to beat the clock. Work with the flow whilst it's there because we know it won't always be so. Follow the hunch, throw in your energy and hope for the best, mm? Like the flood barriers my job is to guide the creative flow somewhere. It's natural, frightening and exciting, full of powerful energy you know is short lived and must be ridden with a passion. Too soon it will be gone and so will we.

So kiss as it flies I say, kiss it as is disappears before your very eyes. The best we can hope for is an imprint, some sort of memory that the fumbling fingers try to grasp.

Nobody was lost or ill, no squabbles, jealousies nor pettiness just a wonderful creative companionship. A quiet getting along, a background hum and the assurance of a great hand, the conductor holding the orchestra. We sang the same song with different expression and it was a lovely time spent with truly lovely people exploring one another, doing something we enjoy.

My apartment and lemon tree already booked for 2019.

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