April 24, 2008
my bench Conner Jeweler's School New Albany IN
I pull my visor down and my vision forms and all becomes clear, the tiny bits of solder become shining squares against a black background . I take my torch and apply heat to the square and it becomes a molten ball. I quickly scoop up the tiny ball with a iron pick hoping that the ball will stick to the pick. Thank you, it does, now heat the ring then on the prong and off 4 times or so the little ball should jump off the pick when held close to the hotter metal and stick to the prong... I am successful about half of the time...I am successful now. Quickly, I grope for the prong wire and try to heat the solder on the ring just enough so it will cause the wire to stick to the prong when I touch it, but not so hot that the solder will come of onto the wire...I must do this quickly as the wire conducts heat fast and I need my touch to tell me if the wire adhears I have burned myself twice this way this morning and I am not up for more torture. I am successful only 1 in 10 tries today, this one was sort of OK, at least the wire stuck on but it was so crooked that if this was an actual customer job I would have to sand it off and start over. A miserable waste of time...
I knew it would be hard. This is exactly the sort of thing that comes hard to me, the One that can barely walk and chew gum at the same time...But I get it eventually...
There is no "Plan B"
There is no "Exit Plan"
There is no giving up...
There are a lot of issues. First I am still not 100 percent well. I have a ragged cough and a lot of Lung congestion. I am still having to sleep sitting up. Thank you for your prayers and comments.
I went to class this monday, but was too weary tuesday to go in and the instructor started making noises about "giving me part of my money back if I felt like I couldn't do it."...When I asked him if he thought that I had potential he said "Yes, that I have done work that was up to store standards and some perfectly. I have the ability to learn what I need to to open my business." "OK then, lets get going.." I said the next morning...
But there are no other students right now, and the hired help quit, so his other apprentice, a gal that is simply amazing for such a short amount of time at the bench, is now hired to be the gal friday and is moving from Chicago to work there and go into the business that way. But other than her there is no one else to handle the counter, take in repairs and buy the gold that has turned this semi profitable business into literally a gold mine. Today it was discovered that a watch that was taken in for repair by a student trying to help,(and not done correctly either) was missing and the customer wanted it back. I expended no effort in trying to find it but focused on my work...I felt the tension rising so I spoke up today about it.
I am a paying student, I have no time to waste getting involved with the operations of the business. I dont need to earn "credit" towards tools or other stuff. I am there to learn, and if no teaching is going on then I expect to be practicing what I have already learned and have the materiels and tools at hand to do that. If my instructor is not able to teach and I am not able to work that day on other things then I need to be compensated for that day. So while I am understanding about illness and the like, no attitudes for not picking up the phone or taking to the counter customers, that is not my place to be doing that. I dont dump trash or clean toilets, that is not my place either...
I know that the Instructor agreed verbally that I was right but I can see issues like this for the whole time that I am here. Woody and I discussed the possibility that the Instructor my be unable to continue in the long term (he confided that he is looking into a possible early retirement due to his health) and that we may be forced to look at a Plan B such as the school in Florida or even seeing if the Drouhards are still teaching up in Ohio. It really could give me the worries... but it also is a reminder that God is fully behind every thing that goes on.
I have signed a lease for three months and then it is month to month. I only have given three months of the 6 months of money to the school. If this is what God really wants me to do then He will make a way. I will trust Him to bring it to fruition in His time.
One of the things that makes it hard is the horrible music they play in there. I have started bringing my Ipod and listening to the wonderful podcasts, teaching and other programs as I did at thisplace. I feel a real lift in my heart as I take in daily food from God's word as well as instruction from great teachers and others. I can listen to this as long as I dont have a demonstration or DVD to watch. Tuning out the constant distractions is a huge help to me.
I am as committed as a soilder to this. I dont know what the future will hold, but I want to get through this and succeed. For the first time in my life, I dont want to be told that "I cant" or "You annoy me cause you arent doing it well enough so stop already" or " I am sick of this so we have to stop"... My life as I know it depends on making a go of this business.
I said tonight that I dont know how I will feel about staying in NW Arkansas if I have to work for someone. Commuting is just crazy, the price of gas is nearly $4.00 a gallon. If we came to the city like moving here we could use Public transit and be closer to everything we need. I can walk to the store, the doctor I am using even church if I chose. Its all within a mile of here. Its 5 miles to a store in Bella Vista. I could get used to apartment life if it was like this place, so very quiet all of the time...but I am getting ahead again
I cant do that. I have promised myself that I would try to live in the day one day at a time while I am here. I am trying to not fret (picture a horse breaking out in a nervious lather pulling at the bit out of unseen fear while standing safe in its stall.. that is "fretting") or worry or get ahead too far. That is not what this is about. Its been hard while so ill, getting out will help a lot as I feel better.
Annabelle is doing well and is the darling of the complex. I have to restrain her exuburances when meeting new people, but other than that she is a happy camper loving the climb up and down the stairs to go walking outside. I am so glad that I was able to bring her with me.
I ask for your continued prayers and good wishes, for I most certainly need them as I climb this mountain one step at a time.
Labels: Annabelle, Artisans Fine Jewelry Repair, Bella Vista, Business start up, Conner School, Faith, Health, IN, Kentucky, New Albany, Woody, working