Monday, 31 December 2012

The Road Less Travelled

One of the great things about getting older is that you earn the opportunity to try new things and really do what you want. For example ... I have recently retired from my profession after a fantastic career that gave me a variety of challenges, wonderful colleagues and a lot of personal fulfillment. But one often gets to a stage when, in my case, 36 years of schooling and work in one professional field was enough. It felt like time to do something different. Really different!

In 1979 I worked as a university exchange student in Finland. Two dear friends (who still are) introduced me to weaving by giving me a backstrap loom called a pirtta and showing me how to use it. I made some long strips of thick fabric in white and shades of blue, and I still have them buried away somewhere with the pirtta itself. When I returned to university for fourth year, I took an after-hours weaving course on campus and loved using a floor loom. Then, with one of my first pay cheques after graduation, I bought a 36" Lerclerc Artisat loom and began a passion that I had no idea would take me this far.

Weaving was a hobby while I pursued my profession, but now the tables have turned and I'm taking the road less travelled from my Finnish summer - that of being a weaver and craftsperson and selling my work. So as 2012 comes to a close, I have a lot on which to reflect: a really good career working with great people, and now a journey on my own road less travelled.

Life is a series of different compromises, but traveling on one's own special road at some point in life is important.

What is your road less travelled?

Happy New Year!

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