Monday, June 25, 2007
Visiting is not the same as being there.
Last Thursday, I visited my alma mater. Nope, not my University. Better than that -Trent School of Rug Hooking.
I was there to showcase a possible class for the 2008 year, which I really hope I get to teach. I chose Thursday to do the showcase, since that is Open House day at the School. This was the first time in 4 years that I hadn't been there for the week, so this was the next best thing.
My friend Elaine and I went to Peterborough the night before to stay with my mother in law, since my showcase was at 8:30 a.m. Jo (ma-in-law) treated us to a wonderful Prime Rib dinner at Chemong Lodge on Wednesday night. Amazing food at a ridiculous price (low) in a gorgeous setting - highly recommended.
The following morning, we arrived at the college in lots of time to set up - much better than driving for two hours at the crack of dawn. No sooner had we emerged from the car then I found out I was sharing the spotlight with another showcase. Jon, the best wildlife hooker this side of anywhere, was presenting his course outline as well. As he set up his projector, and I knew they would be images of his amazing creations, I was feeling a tad anxious. I definitely wanted to go before him - to be the appetizer before his entree.
And, lest I forget, I also ended up following a very funny skit about Emily Carr, her prolific monkey Woo and Woo's clean-up crew. I felt caught between the ridiciulous and the sublime and it was more than a little like being on Saturday Night Live.
But the presentation went well, and there appeared to be great interest in this little project after all. I guess there are a lot of hookers like me. They already have many long-term projects on the go. They're looking for something they can design, plan, hook and finish in time to take home.
Everyone gets to vote on the showcases they have seen during the week, to help choose the classes for the following year. I have my fingers crossed that they choose me.
The rest of the day was spent catching up with lots of folks. The rug school at Trent has a very loyal student body. Many return year after year, some since the very beginning. And who can blame them! Where else can you hook all day long - and all night long too if you like, laugh out loud, carry on like kids, have all your meals prepared for you and celebrate the delight of being in the company of like-minded women for a week. It's summer camp for hookers! And it doesn't get much better than that.
The rug display this year had some incredible works. It was fun to see rugs from previous years that people had finished since school last year. There was certainly a variety of topics and techniques and it is a testament to how good the school is to see such great work.
We also saw the Friendship rug and it was as amazing as I knew it would be. Taking on that task is quite an endeavour. Having helped create last year's rug, I fully appreciate the effort that goes into creating it. Sally, Gretchen and Jane have definitely raised the bar for the next rug. It's amazing when you think that one lucky person gets to take it home.
Lunch in the cafeteria included the fries and homemade desserts that I swore I wouldn't have. Then off to the classrooms to visit anyone we hadn't seen yet. Visitng the classes is one of my favourite things to do, since it is often tough deciding what class to take. When you get inside the rooms and see the work, you vow to take that class "next year" if it is offered.
This year, the classroom visits were open to the public only. They opted for an "on the lawn" display of the work to the classes on Friday instead. I'm sure it cuts down on the disruption and loss of class time, but I'm glad I picked this year to be a "public".
I remember Thursday as being a bit of a sad day - only one full day of class left before getting ready to head home on Saturday. The week flies by like any week with that much fun in it. I remember my first year hearing one of the women say, as she packed up on Saturday, "only 51 weeks till I get to come back".
I really hope I get to come back in 51 weeks! This time as a teacher instead of a student. I hope I get to lead a class in my nice little project that they can start and finish while we are all having fun.