Catching Up

Contrary to the rumors going around, I am still alive and kicking! Teaching and travel days got very busy, so I will attempt to catch you up on the adventures.

The basketry class went superbly well. At least I think it did – you will have to ask my students for their opinion. Everyone seemed to leave with a smile on their face, so I think I am safe in my assessment.

They pushed themselves in what they wanted to try.

Working hard.
Discussing options.

 

Some quite lovely and unique work was accomplished in three very busy days.  Very proud of all those folks who gave it a go and found success in trying new materials and techniques.

Monday, Monday

 

 

After a huge thunderstorm and gale force winds yesterday evening, this morning was COLD! No snow, but nippier than most of us preferred. The coffe cart was kept busy al day and the chicken soup at lunch was a popular item.

 

Started the three-day basketry class with thirteen lovely ladies. About half of the class had minimal to no experience; a third had very strong backgrounds in basketry work; two had taken this same workshop three years ago and could have taught the class this time. Expectations are high that they will have a thoroughly delightful and rewarding basketry experience. Pressure is on!

 

And with just one day into it, the beginners are doing grand and the advanced gals have already reached some of their goals. Everything is looking good!

 

A lovely varied dinner at a Chinese restaurant in Katoomba and the sky is clear with a brilliant star display.

 

Earlier in the day I caught a much closer display:

Unintentional skip

Well, I had a post all ready to go yesterday, but it has disappeared into ether air. Suffice to say I had an enjoyable time in Melbourne and environs, got reorganized for the next stage of the trip and made my way via plane and train to the Bule Mountains outside Sydney.

Already at the start of the second day of a mudcloth class, my 10 enthusiastic students have produced a multitude of lovely patterns and designs with the gorgeous colored dirts from around the area. We will finish up today and do a show and tell from all the workshops this evening.

The day is off to a brilliant start sun-wise as well as in general. Heading off for a cup of hot chocolate and a peek at the vendors before class starts.

Into Town

Changed location yesterday, but before I get into that just two points from Foster:

 

i never saw hog deer outside of videos, but did see tracks and signs of their abundant presence – deer about the height of a hog. And the black swans were a constant on the water in the cove, lovely and graceful.

 

On the way to Melbourne for the handoff, we stopped to check out the local cattle market’s bi-weekly auction. Not every pen was full but there were a LOT of cattle, maybe 2-3 dozen bidders and maybe the same amount of auction workers. The best cattle had already been sold by the time we walked into the massive structure. Catwalks went up and down aisles so the people could adequately see each head of cattle. Paint marks on the hides designated different sellers. Extremely quick moving; prices per kilo were on the high side. Did my best to keep my hands down as there was no extra room in my luggage!

 

 

Lunch in Melbourne with two Annes was delish and long as we caught up on news with each other. Then a transfer of luggage from one boot to the next and I am now in the care of the lovely Anne Newton. Minimalist dinner after such a filling lunch, some chat time with Boris the cat and a restful sleep after a long day.

 

On the Drift

A beautiful day today – warm, sunny with just the right breeze.

 

This morning Anne got a crash course in basketry using the cumbungi/cattail from yesterday’s gathering. She did great making a sweet little plain weave basket! Didn’t get to the second option of a diagonal plaited basket but I made a sample for her to follow.

 

After lunch we headed off to climb the Big Drift in Wilson’s Promentory National Park. The BD is a large area along the coast that is sand – sand dunes on steroids! Really impressive with some cool patterns created by the winds. Anne posted a picture on Facebook if you are interested in seeing a bit of it.https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10213010359001895&set=a.10204623237129090.1073741828.1479769821&type=3

 

On the way home we saw about a dozen commorants in a tree waiting to dive into a farm pond. Four kangaroos jumped across the far side of one of the paddocks.

 

Tomorrow I head to Melbourne. Definitely will be taking many lovely memories of Black Swamp Road life with me…