The night Beezy Bailey blew in

We have the luck of hosting a celebrated avant garde artist out of the blue - correction, out of the dead of night. And Angel the hotel cat gets herself immortalised on the hotel 'quote of the day' sandwich board.

A bit like Brad and Janet in the Rocky Horror, Beezy Bailey and Ashley arrived on our threshold on a dark and stormy night. An average Karoo dorp hotel concierge may have been forgiven for thinking that the tall dark stranger was dressed in his Pyjama's.  But we know  our artist's and we know Beezy's an unusual dresser; The two piece paizley rig would obviously be a suit. Indeed, he'd just been presenting 'Camera Obscura' along with Graham Abbott at The Barrydale Analogue Festival

A pair or two  of pajamas may have helped right then though. This was a couple in distress. Somewhere out there alongside the R62 on a dark and wind swept night stood their German saloon with a shredded run flat tyre. Their luggage was somewhere else entirely. A brand new toothbrush and toothpaste  was found (well done Sue) and into the beautiful Magnolia room they went. The work of the 'king of kitsch', Vladimir Tretchikoff, to whom that room is dedicated, is a long long way away from the kind of thing Beezy Bailey is famous for but Beezy and Ashley survived the night. In Fact enjoyed themselves so much that they remained there for a second night.  That's when  Angel the hotel cat got her proverbial claws into Beezy.

Some months before we found this little lost soul taking refuge on top of a gas bottle out back near the dry store. We named her Charlie's Angel in the hope that that was how it would be between her and our own Charlie the dog. When at home in Kalk Bay Charlie lives for his  green belt walks in Tokai and Constantia on account of one thing; the squirrels. We feared that a cat and a squirrel might equate to the same thing in Charlies brain. Thankfully not. Angel came through the first meeting unchased . She was  a gift. Still not quite yet a cat then  she was the most engaging kitten you could wish to meet. And in the mind of Beezy Bailey she provided a spark of inspiration. Seizing on one of  our whether worn 'quote for the day' sandwich boards, Beezie decided to do something inspired by Angel over breakfast. It was a beautiful scene, the famous artist working in the East doorway of the lovely breakfast room with the morning sun streaming in. Angel in attendance. Watching him work was a revelation. He doesn't take briefs, doesn't do commissions. He works in the moment. The hotel  sandwich boards are made of plywood. The weather hasn't been kind to them. Seizing on some strips that were delaminating Beezy added his own marks to those of the sun, wind and rain. And there where he'd stripped the lamination away he saw too legs. So he painted some high heels on those. Then came the face of Angel peering past the legs , and her tail. And so it went.

What a beautiful momento we know have -  of when our hotel cat Angel was still a kitten and when  Beezie Bayley dressed in his 'pyjamas' but without a toothbrush blew in for a night that became two.