A raft guide/philospher/potter walked into a champagne bar in downtown Asheville. He ordered a dark beer, opened up his David Foster Wallace book and sat down in a big leather chair.
A songwriter/author/illustrator walked in and set up her microphone stand, one eye on the traveler. She saw that his hair was curly like hers, but unlike her, he had a beard. It was too hot to be wearing her wool green but she did not brush her hair because she was late.
She began to play, just like she did every Wednesday under the big moose. She talked to the moose in-between songs. She did not talk to the raft guide/philospher/potter. After the show was over she asked him “Are you reading that book or is it just a prop?” The raft guide/philospher/potter defended himself. “I was distracted, okay!” Then they went out for Indian food.
He kept saying he was going to ride a far off river but he never left. Instead he stayed and cooked food for her and her little brother, Leonardo. They fell in love and made up shared memories. “Remember ten years ago when we. . . “ He set up a slingshot range in the backyard. When winter rolled in she went with him to Costa Rica. She was sad because her Dad had died and she cried into the sea. She played shows and wrote her second book Falling Together : A Songwriter’s Journey from Death to Love.
When summer came, she felt better and they went to Colorado. He told her he was not going to work on the rivers forever, only until the fall. They thought about getting a sailboat, but she wanted to hug land and he wanted open sea. They thought about a bus with a kitchen and a bed. His calluses were thick from rafting. He missed making things. He wanted to be a potter again.
She said this would be nice. He asked if she would make drawings for his pots. She said yes. They cleared out a shed in her backyard. He built a bat system with tiles and shelves from old wood. Their neighbor Angie let him use her kiln. Ten Cent Pottery was born.
photo Veronique Gagnon