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Art for the rich

Today my mum found some of my old painting materials in a closet. It reminded me of my mission to buy a few more before I head back to Germany. I have yet to find an art store in Heidelberg, this seems to be the easier way so long as the little tubes of acrylic paint don't burst in my suitcase on the way home.

Then I got to thinking of all of the different arts I enjoyed in school, particularly pottery and clay work. What I wouldn't give to have access to a potters wheel and a kiln now. I innocently thought I'd look up how much they'd cost on ebay. Not a chance in hell.

Painting materials aren't cheap either. Those little tubes of paint cost a lot of money and they're essentially lost money, what am I going to do with my "creation" after I've finished? Probably put it in a cupboard never to look at again. Or in the case of my paintings from school, behind the bookcase in the spare room of my parents house.

Then there's the hassle of finding somewhere to buy canvas, getting together (and probably having to build) the wood frames to stretch the stuff. All of that crap. Have to buy the wood, nails and various tools with which to create said frames.

But I do remember that at home I have rather a lot of scrap wood. When we arrived in Heidelberg the movers broke one of our tall bookcases in half. They also only delivered a few parts of our wooden bed frame so we were left unable to put it together. I still have to buy a saw to cut the pieces to size and some sandpaper to take off the gloss. But then surely I can paint right on those? Now that sounds like a plan. Not that I'd have anywhere to put hunks of wood splattered with acrylic paint... but that's all part of it right?

As for sculpting, there's always good ol' chicken wire and papier mache. That could work right?

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I am a 24 year old British stay at home mother to a two year old boy. Married to a U.S. soldier and currently living in Germany.

I have seen the Vatican from the very top of St Peter's Basilica, the mud in the World War I trenches outside Ypres. I have walked through Montmartre side streets bustling with people in the evening, gotten lost in the streets of Greenwich Village NYC, run through cornfields on the Welsh border and sat outside with a cup of tea watching fireflies in the fields of the outer Chicago suburbs.

I have held the hands of others through addiction, fear, suicide, despair and come out the other side. I have left everything behind to begin anew.
I have fought mental illness and walked through snow in the mountains of the lake district, England. I have explored the morgue in the bowels of an abandoned hospital on a summer evening, climbed to the top of scaffolding on the outside of a five floor warehouse to look at the city lights of Nottingham at night and I have watched the sun setting on the Texas horizon.

I have held my son's tiny hand through the plastic window on an isolette in the NICU ward. Walked, speaking only in whispers, through the catacombs beneath the ground on the outskirts of Rome and seen the fireworks over Heidelberg castle.

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