My name is Alison Galvan and I am an artist.
The funny thing about telling people that you are an artist is that as soon as you say it, 50% of the people immediately think ooo she’s really cool. While the other 50% of the people, are thinking, ooo she’s really crazy! And with a lot of creative people you’d be right.
Actually though I think what makes most people think that artists are crazy is that our imaginations are always running wild and on the whole we get bored super easily and because of that, in our efforts to spice things up, we seem to do stuff, that to your “normal” person is just totally right off the deep end.
I know for myself I really love change and doing things that scare the bejesus out myself. But most people it seems like they really hate to rock the boat. To make a decision that changes their life is something that they need to chew on. They need to mull it over for a while. For several days, weeks, months and or sometimes even years before they feel comfortable enough to make that final decision and then act upon it. But with me, we are talking seconds. Actually I have been described as terrifyingly decisive by some who are close to me. Let me give you an example
It was the Christmas of 1995. I was 25 years old, single with not a date in sight. I had a children’s wear company that I was becoming more and more discouraged with.
I wasn’t happy and I needed to make a change. So spontaneity being my middle name. I decided chuck the usual holiday traditions packed my bags, jumped on a plane and flew to New Orleans to spend Christmas and New Years on a cruise.
On December 27th after a riotous three days of Christmas celebrating, I traded in my party beads for a lifejacket and bounced on board a Holland America cruise ship for a 10 day cruise.
That night as we drifted down Mark Twain’s Mississippi River I got gussied up in my lucky red dress and ridiculously impractical red patent stiletto heels and set about exploring the ship from the bottom to the top.
Cruise ships have a wealth of entertainment and I found myself going from to lounge to lounge circling higher and higher and higher still until finally I came upon the glass domed piano bar right at the top of the ship called the Crows Nest. I pushed through the brass doors teetering on my ridiculous heels and quite suddenly pulled up short. Before me with a daft expression on his face stood a tall handsome young Filipino bartender doing his best not to spill the tray full of drinks as he stared at me.
As cliché as it sounds, it was love at first sight. We talked all night. Told each other all our hopes and dreams, our plans and goals, and as the sun came up and kissed the bow of the ship, he proposed with an origami ring which he had handmade by candle light. My answer, of course was the only one that made practical logical and responsible sense after knowing someone for only 8 hours. It was Yes!
The cruise came to the end and I went home to tell my conservative family my news. My parents were shocked speechless and I’ll never forget the moment I told my traditional as a white picket fence brother that I was getting married. He looked at me sternly and said, “so let me get this straight… You are going to marry some guy you met on a 7 day cruise?” No, stupid! Blasting him with a withering gaze, “I am going to marry some guy I met on a 10 day cruise! Duh! Thank you very much!”
Two weeks later, I sublet my apartment, packed my bags and was on a plane to the Philippines. Two months after that, as our families and friends were quietly laying bets on how long we would last, we were married.
A lot has changed since that fateful Christmas of 1995. I now have a beautiful and very tall 17 year old daughter. I also have a son who is in University for his first year studying Criminology. My parents have since divorced and so has my traditionalist brother and his first wife. But as for me and my handsome young man, while he may not quite be so young, and I couldn’t stand for more than 5 minutes in those red stilettos, as of May 26th of this year we will be celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary.
So I guess the question still remains, am I cool or crazy – I don’t know, I’ll let you be the judge.
All I do know is that my name is Alison Galvan and I’m an artist.