Thursday, September 2, 2010

A Growly Day

What a growly day today!

Opened the bigger kiln today and.... yikes. It had gone off after an unusually long 12 hours but I couldn't remember how long it had been on low so I wasn't that worried. Mistake! Totally underfired. Bleah. Yuck. Of course I need the stuff for Saturday....

So I unloaded and sure enough, another element was broken. Luckily it was the last of the old ones (I wanted to replace all elements last time Jim the kiln guru was here, but he talked me into only doing the ones he felt were the older ones) and even more luckily, he had made me one extra element. This sounds odd, but this is an old kiln, made almost 20 years ago by a cheerful carefree sort of a guy. Eric made excellent kilns for a few years and then decided he liked motorcycles better. So, in his carefree way, he stopped making and servicing kilns and all of us who had purchased them would have been in the soup if it hadn't been for Jim getting into the business. I'll always remember one thing Eric said to me once. He was late and explained it by saying he'd been delayed by a truck ahead of him on the road. "Everywhere I go," he said, "there's a slow truck following ahead of me."

I got the new element in without too much trouble and turned to the real work of the day.

First of all, it has been extremely hot this week. Even without the kilns it was over 30C in the studio.

Secondly, we seem to be having the mother of all mosquito crops. Late every summer we get a hatch of a certain species of mosquito. I don't know what it is, but it is a tiny critter, only about a quarter of an inch long, and I swear it has a blunt stinger because it hurts.

So I painted small bowls all day in the 30C + heat with a zillion microscopic biters sneaking up my pant legs, into my hair and under my glasses. I had to keep the doors shut and even Kip the dog couldn't stay outside. He lay under my feet on his dog bed and snapped at the mosqies. Really relaxing!

A possible customer called and wants a custom canister set. Fine, but she doesn't have a car so can I just come down and see her kitchen so I can see what it is she wants to match.Where is she? Right down in the busiest part of the City, of course. Is there a place to park at her condo? Of course not. Did I say, 'no'? Of course not. She sounded so sad about having been forced to sell her house (mansion?) because she was getting so old and couldn't do all the work anymore and her daughter made her get a modern kitchen and it just isn't 'home' etc etc etc. I fell for it and didn't even hear the violins in the background until too late.


It had better be cooler tomorrow.

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