The second part of that fabulous field trip was touring the chocolate factory in Hershey. I remember smelling chocolate from miles away as the bus approached the town. Once again, we went right out onto the factory floor and milled around the huge vats of melted goo, watched the candy get formed into various shapes and then packaged up and boxed. Of course we got free samples. And of course we were all on a sugar overload for the trip home!It must have been the inspiration of those kisses. The third part of that trip, as I remember, was that my pals and I sat in the back of the bus and had a kissing contest. The game was to see who could kiss the longest, and I was sitting with my boyfriend, Bill H., going for the championship. We were lost in a seemingly endless smooch (no tongues yet) when everything went silent in the bus. I felt a large hand on my head, opened my eyes, and looked up to see the face of Mr. Flynn looming above me - not looking pleased because we had won the kissing contest, but looking pissed because we were not "behaving". We ended up in the principal's office the next day with an embarrassing lecture about public displays of affection, good behavior, yadda yadda. I think our parents were even telephoned - yikes! The photo below shows Mr. Flynn, on the right, and Mr. Vosseler, the principal, on the left, in front of our school.On Thursday this week (in 2006), I went on another student field trip, with my Painting class from Cabrillo College. Our instructor, Tobin, packed the day with a wonderful array of treats. First we toured the campus at California College of Arts & Crafts (CCA) in Oakland, where we were drooling at the magnificent art facilities available there for students. They seem to be a place that has everything. Want to borrow a really high-end camera and then print a wall sized mural of what you photograph? No problem. Want to cast in bronze, or blow glass, or make monumental sculptures? No problem. Want to make stone lithographs, or have your own jewelry workbench? No problem. I am already planning my next lifetime - I'll go there to school and try it all, seriously!
Next we went to the studio of Thekla Hammond, a painter who is making a room-size installation consisting of hanging, painted life-size plexiglass panels (and some mirrors) of all the special people in her life. We walked around among these panels and could easily identify a couple of the people (our teacher for one), even though none of them have faces. It was a beautiful piece, very evocative of the "soul" of each person, with simple sketches and luscious colors.The photo above shows our instructor, Tobin, near his portrait (tall, in orange, on his right).After a quick stop at Blick Art Store and a bite to eat in Berkeley, we went on to Kala Art Institute to look at a "white on white" show with some great pieces by fellow Santa Cruzan, Rob Larsen. Then we zipped across the Bay Bridge to San Francisco and spent a couple of hours at SF MOMA, looking at paintings and thinking about how to begin our next assignment - abstraction - scary for me! We had an early dinner, then went to a few galleries in the downtown Thursday Night Art Walk event, and finally home. We felt full to the brim with art and color and inspiration. So today I'm thinking "hurray for field trips!" , and for the memories stirred up by this one. THANKS, Tobin.