WILKES-BARRE — Marie Toole didn’t make up an excuse for her rather primitive painting style. “I couldn’t stay in the lines,” she laughed. Then, in a mock defensive tone, added “I don’t have a beer until noon.”
Toole and four other residents at B’nai B’rith Apartments were in various stages of painting pre-drawn mandala designs on small canvas squares Friday morning. They worked with Emma Gallagher from the King’s College campus ministry and freshman Anna Monsurd, who were just two of the college’s faculty and students fanned out through the area doing a variety of activities as part of national Holy Cross Service Day.
Holy Cross is the religious order that founded King’s, and it has always emphasized community service. Along with outdoor cleanups, the college representatives stuffed packages for the Red Cross and held environmental programs for elementary school students. But at the apartments for seniors, the goal was just about relaxing while coloring in the ornate patterns native to Hinduism and Buddhism.
“It’s a stress reliever,” Gallagher said.
“I went out of the lines,” Toole quipped. “Mine looks like a bad Easter egg.”
“I just made new lines,” Jackie Kostelac decided.
“Maybe I’ll get a Sharpie and draw lines on mine,” Monsurd suggested.
Coloring with meticulous patience, Norman Teitsworth worked with the intense silence of a true artist, pausing to look up just long enough to explain why his painting wasn’t even half done while others were making excuses for their finished product. “I started an hour later than them.”
But hey, if you get worked up about it, you’re missing the point. “It’s just a relaxing way to spend some time,’ Kostelac said.
“I was expecting some wine,” Toole chided.
Reach Mark Guydish at 570-991-6112 or on Twitter @TLMarkGuydish