I’ve never been one for resolutions but there’s no doubt that today marks a great opportunity to pause and consider what we’ve been doing for the past year, and what may lay ahead. I hate to sound ungrateful, but I’m making a sigh of relief to see the back of 2014. It was a productive year for us and one full of change, but much of it fell out of our hands as I struggled with illness and perhaps worse, realised what a sorryful sort the human race can become when help is most needed.
I feel it’s fair to write that we were forced to leave our workshop this year. But we were fortunate to find the energy and opportunity to take one of our own barns from a leaking, creaking pile of bricks and make it whole again, breathing in new life and preparing it for our next chapter.
We’ve moved home more recently too and now that we’re settled it feels like one of the greatest changes left to get used to is having no internet. It still hasn’t been connected, with the latest promise being made for April. I’ve got myself in the mind that it won’t ever be installed and funnily I’ve become quite happy with that. For work reasons we will create a new routine of popping to the library so the blog will no longer suffer, and my good old brother is very local and happy for us to leave videos uploading overnight if necessary so all can resume. For all other reasons I’m offline and content for now. It’s the perfect reason to get on an do some woodwork just the way I want to do it, without the temptation to look up for design ideas or opinions on that great expanse of the internet. I’ve had some extremely hectic years building workbenches, always building a greater quantity than the year before. This year I plan to build less, considerably less. Among the changes last year we came to realise that nothing can be more valuable than taking back some control for ourselves. Bigger and faster does not mean better and I’m eager to become a craftsman again and not just a man who works with wood. My workshop now is smaller than ever and with less machines, but it’s also warmer, more comfortable and more inspirational than any workshop I’ve used before it.
I’m looking forward to this new year as a year to learn. About myself and about woodwork. To explore new ideas and enjoy this as the year which we write our book. And to ensure things don’t get too comfortable and contemplative, I’ve a shit load of building work to do to keep me on my toes!
Happy new year to all.