Chasing Down the Muse: The calm before the spring

Slowly, balance comes once again.—Deng Ming-Dao, 365 Tao

The sea was busy after the rains. Roiling and churning, waves pounded the shoreline at high tide. Deeper water farther out rocked and rolled as if boiling up from beneath. There would be no sightings of whales or dolphins in these waters. My eyes turned to the clear blue skies filled with gulls and a pod of pelicans. What a day!

Part of me seems to feel busy like the sea — roiling and churning, with lots going on underneath. Maybe it's just the advent of daylight saving time, with longer daytime hours and sights and sounds of spring everywhere. There is just so much to do. How to choose what is important becomes the question right after, "How much can I manage to do?"

Life does seem to gear up about now, post-winter doldrums, even here in the West where we don't know really harsh winters. Activities abound, and by mid-March, weekends are filled with bustling movement. Laguna is vibrant.

First, there was our annual Patriots Day parade on a glorious sun-drenched weekend. Next came Laguna Beach a la Carte — a grand four-day food and wine experience. This was capped Sunday by a lovely art and dining event under the trees at our own Sawdust Art Festival.

Talk about busy! The team that put this last event together did an outstanding job in a very short time. We hope for another similar event next year. It was a beautiful day, the art was lovely, the food and beverage were delicious, and the group convivial. Nice job.

Busy continues to be the order of the day with so many activities here in town from now on into and through our summer festivals.

For me, I am busy with Sawdust Studio Art Classes, which continue to take place each week for locals and out-of-town guests. In April, we add the annual Spring Into Art classes, which are more in-depth classes in a myriad of mediums. There is glassblowing, painting, jewelry fabrication, mixed media, fused glass, copper enameling and more. You can check it all out on the website at

Speaking of festival season, artists and others throughout the town are busy, busy, busy gearing up for our three summer festivals. The summer promises to be another bright and beautiful draw for the multitude of visitors to our beautiful beach community.

Days after the rollicking ocean activity, I spotted a lone grebe floating on a much calmer sea. While I really look forward to spring and all this busy-ness, I've gotta say that there is always a sweet longing to be like the grebe.

Guess it's all about finding balance, eh?

I know I will, for everything does have its place and its season. Knowing what is here and what is coming, being in harmony with it, letting things simply be at times…that is sublime. And balanced. What a life!

CHERRIL DOTY is an artist, writer and director of the Sawdust Studio Art Classes in Laguna Beach. Always fascinated, inspired, and titillated by the beauty and the ever-changing mysteries of life, she can be reached at or by phone at 714/745.9973.

Copyright © 2019, Daily Pilot
EDITION: California | U.S. & World