Saturday, July 2, 2005

Last Class Day and Wrapup

It's actually Tuesday morning and I've been home in Seattle for a day. I'm trying so hard to separate the week I've just had with what surely awaits me at work. I love my staff and my work so I'm looking forward to the challenges that show themselves every week but the stress I feel at the torch (yes, there IS stress - will I burn the glass, will those wings crack, why can't I do hands and feet very well yet?) is an entirely different kind of stress than keeping business going so I can keep my staff (and myself) employed.

Let's see - final class day. I was a bit mopey without meaning to be. I think I woke up and realized a few things - It was all coming to an end, I was not leaving "a master" of anything (not that I expected to be but it's a little like starting over), I was having to say goodbye to a great group of people I had met, I was coming back to my grandma's passing, a long trip lay ahead... I managed to squeeze out a few smiles during the day but the emotions were right under the surface. Even Lucio noticed to my dismay and I told him I was just tired.

The class got more relaxed as the week wore on. Six full days with Lucio was both wonderful and at times too much. We spent a lot of time at the torch on Friday and Saturday with fewer demos. When Lucio did demo, however, he showed us some new techniques. For example, he made new little birds, showed us how to make more avant garde figures using similar techniques and how to incorporate everything into one big piece. This last skill culminated in a goblet that was just breathtaking - he took the Medusa figure and combined it with Perseus and an angel and an "architechture" to make a piece that I'm sure is worth thousands of Euro. It was an amazing sight to see.

My trip home was uneventful, if extraordinarily long. Next time, it will be worth it just to cough up the dough to fly direct. Once home, I felt like I was in a different world. I was greeted by my adoring little posse of animals. Cats and dogs alike were jubilant at my return (it's nice to feel loved). Getting in the car yesterday to do simple things like grocery shopping was foreign to me after not having stepped foot into pretty much anything but a water taxi for the week. I couldn't muster the strength or the time to torch - so many things to do and as it was the 4th, the 70lb dog was almost in my lap at the sound of the loud bangs of fireworks. I can't wait to get into my studio though - it'll have to wait until tonight. There are new tools to use, new techniques to try.

I plan on assembling a series of thoughts and tips on this training opportunity in the next day or so. I know I was desparately searching for info before I left and some things were truly left unsaid - as simple as bring mosquito repellant (think DEET) if you're prone to bites and what tools to bring, etc.

I'd better get dressed and start my day. Thanks to all of you for reading my blog. I've had a fun time writing it. I will continue on with glass news and musings. I plan on offering much more of my work for sale in the coming months - gotta pay for that next trip to Italy!

By the way, I've assembled all the pictures I took into a web page. Feel free to browse through and take any that you would like by right-clicking on them. I have the (huge) originals as well if you need copies.

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