Day 2: Attempted Robbery, Ashford Spinning Wheel, and Sand Paper

*** Warning: Unweaverly Language and Many Exclamation Marks!! ***

Pay attention; this was all in one day. I forgot how wild and dangerous the world outside my basement is.

Just before we left this morning, always-lovely Sharleen from the furniture rental place rang in response to the message I left Friday night; after a brief conversation, we discovered that the chairs delivered to the gallery just came back from someone's home and the ones intended for me were professionally cleaned and waiting in the storage and were indeed navy blue. Sharleen offered to replace them, but I didn't want the already installed Exhibit(ion) disturbed, so I declined.

When we got to the gallery, Ben noticed two police cars nearby, but I thought the policemen were having morning tea in a cafe. We unlocked and opened the gallery door and found the lights on. We went up the stairs and heard a radio. And shock, horror, I found the bathroom window open and the removable windowpane removed!! Then I noticed a policeman's holster (no guns in NZ) on the bathroom floor. Lloyd the gallery manager was in his office, and told me that over the weekend there was an attempted robbery at the pharmacy downstairs; the robbers broke a pipe on the roof, and therefore all the gushing rain-like sounds all weekend!! They suspect the culprits wanted material to manufacture P! They could have been walking on the roof while we were installing inside.

Taking a deep breath, I hung "Deep" in its rightful place, and I was pleased; I was pleased because I like this piece, but more because it seems to have completed the Exhibit(ion), not just in numbers but in color/value balance, and in terms of showing a bit more of what I can do.

I didn't want to write letters on the footpath/sidewalk with chalk advertising the Exhibit(ion); but in the end, I did; in skinny meek letters in white, I wrote, "Weaving ->".

A young lad (possibly Lloyd's son) sat in one of the chairs and watched me weave, which made me nervous and I made mistakes. I knew that I should use a simple weave structure while demonstrating, but I didn't imagine I wouldn't cope with an 8-end, two-faced twill. I thoroughly enjoyed the young man's company, learned that the cartoon South Park is named after a real town in Canada, and appreciated his interest in what the different parts of the loom do.

Another German/Dutch-(??)-speaking family came, and asked how long it takes to weave a shawl. Hummm.... I read in the American fora that this is asked often, so I was prepared, but I wonder if there is at least some kind of an appreciation that handweaving takes a long time, at least among those mildly interested in the craft, or if it's just a way of making conversation.

Two weavers came; I know they were weavers though they didn't tell me. I got so nervous because I was having terrible tension problems on the demonstration loom; I remembered why I "temporarily" abandoned this particular warp 20 months ago. But one of them complimented me on "Wind Print". I love you, unknown weaver; thank you!!

Then I met Laura, and here's a story. Laura was living in the Netherlands 30 years ago when she bought an Ashford (NZ) spinning wheel. It came wrapped in old newspaper back then, and her husband became interested in the newspaper's contents, and shortly after he uplifted his family and moved to New Zealand. Laura knows the Marlborough Weavers so she's going to come again tomorrow for Weavers' Hour. What a treat!

When Laura left, at 2:50, I heard this horrible noise, and to my shock & horror, Lloyd was sanding down holes on the wall right behind "Deep"!! I offered to remove the shawls, but he said the dust would fall right down and so not to worry. Yeah, right! I really wanted to take them down, but I didn't.

I noticed someone had texted me. I own a cell phone, but it is never on, except this week, and I don't "do" text. It was Kath Bee, but I didn't understand the text language, so while Lloyd was sanding the wall behind "Paua" (!!!), I asked him to translate Kath's text; Kath and I arranged to meet in front of a bank.

While waiting for Kath, I rushed to Page & Blackmore bookshop, because they kindly put a shawl (the rejected Shawl Four) and my poster in the window. They've hung it over textile, costume, and fashion books and I was very grateful. I also saw a woman for whom I worked for a short time: she said she would come and see my Exhibit(ion) because she saw the writing on the footpath!!

After meeting up with Kath, we went to the gallery ostensibly for Kath to have a look at the space one last time. She decided to go acoustic (which I later understood to mean, "no speakers"; boy, I must be tired!). I think it will be so perfect and lovely; I'm really looking forward to Thursday.

The real reason I wanted to go back was to take down the textiles. Lloyd was spackling, which meant he would sand some more, and then paint over it, and I had a vision of him using a big roller to paint the wall white and ... oh, nightmare; I was feeling physically sick. Anyway, he said he'd use a brush, but it's the sanding I have problems with, so he kindly offered to wait until tomorrow morning when I get there and remove the textile; he'll sand, paint with a brush, and I will put the textile back up. And I'm vacuuming the two rooms and the chairs and lint-rolling the chairs myself. Am I displaying symptoms of Prima Donna Panic?

Kath and I came home. It was so hot all I had to offer Kath was filtered tap water! But we had some good laughs and any day when I can have a good laugh with Kath Bee is a great day.

Tomorrow, the Weavers' Hour.


  1. Meg,
    A great story!
    If another German couple just drifts in I'd get suspicious.

  2. I couldn't imagine such a day even if I were trying to write about a totally outlandish day! It was strange. I think they are tourists, but some may be Dutch - I haven't mastered the art of picking up the difference in German and Dutch as I speak neither, Paul.

  3. I'm part German, just keep some beer close by :)

  4. I know you are, so you're only partly suspicious, Paul.

  5. I've been reading through your blog caught in wonder - I have never tried my hand with weaving, due to the expense of actually GETTING a loom, but the beautiful pieces you make are a great source of inspiration.

    One small thing, however - you say, in this entry, you learned that South Park was based off of a town in Canada? It is actually based off of a small mountain town in Colorado, USA - I grew up about 20 minutes away!

    Thank you again for sharing your work, best wishes!

  6. If you can get a hold of a guild near you, I'm 99% sure they have a loom they can loan you, or get you in touch with someone who has one you can borrow.

    Thanks for visiting.

  7. Beautiful work. The young man was mistaken, though... there is no South Park in Canada.

  8. Really? I thought teenagers would be the most reliable on these matters. That young man is a full-fledged teenager named Sam and I enjoy watching him grow up from afar.


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