Yesterday, in honor of the Ninth Annual Worldwide Paint Out, I stopped to paint a snapshot of Kingston, New York.
I was struck by two old houses, both of the same design. One was covered over with white asphalt shingles and the other still kept its wood details, though the paint was peeling.
The houses stood side by side on Highland Avenue, one of the steepest streets in Kingston. A guy walking his Boston terrier stopped to tell us what it is like to live here.
“In the winter, when this street is covered with ice,” he said, “it doesn’t matter if you’re trying to go up or down. And it doesn’t matter if you’ve got a big four wheel drive SUV. Either way you end up at the bottom. There’s nothing you can do.”
He pointed to a spot in the weeds at my feet, where his dog was snuffling, tugging at her leash. “My truck ended up right there one time,” he said. “It slid all the way down out of control.”