How to not visit an art gallery

Not a happy shopper.

Not a happy shopper.

I’ve been hearing about the Van Gogh show at the Clark Art Institute since this spring. I’ve been in western Massachusetts several times since it opened, but I always seem very pressed for time. It closes this weekend, and I really would like to see it.

“Well, Monkeyboy,” I said to Jake as our hospital visit drew to a close. “What say you and I head over to Williamstown and take a look at some paintings?” His parents looked at each other. “Er, Mom,” said my daughter, “I don’t think Jake is old enough for an art gallery. He will raise the roof.”

Not only is she right about that, he’s too short to see the paintings. I reluctantly admitted that it was a terrible idea and headed to Target instead.

The high temperature in Pittsfield yesterday was 89° F. That may not seem like much to Southerners, but Jake and I were both suffering from the heat. We were cranky and overtired. So we intended to play and relax after our shopping trip. However, it was impossible for either of us to settle down.

If you’ve ever tried to rock an overtired baby, you know it can quickly devolve into attempted lobotomies through your nostrils or fast escapes when you loosen your grip. Mercifully, the sun finally dropped enough that I could give him a cool bath and a snack and put him to bed. I’m going there in a few minutes myself.

Yes, I’m intrepid. Yes, I can work all summer with only an occasional day off. I can drive to Alaska and not lose my composure. I can blog even after working from sun-up to midnight. But one tiny boy reduced me to a quivering mess yesterday.

In short, absolutely nothing has changed about babies since I had my own.

Carol Douglas

About Carol Douglas

Carol L. Douglas is a painter who lives, works and teaches in Rockport, ME. Her annual workshop will again be held on the Schoodic Peninsula in beautiful Acadia National Park, from August 6-11, 2017. Visit for more information.