Friday, October 3, 2008

We don't speak French...

"I love my province! I am thinking you must be learning to speak French to be live here (sic)!"

There are certain things one can expect to hear while waiting in line to buy 2 feet of string (at 3 cents a foot) to make a sling hygrometer. Actually, we might be the very first people to wait in line to buy 2 feet of string (at 3 cents a foot) for a sling hygrometer, so there has really been no clear precedent set. I don't think either of us expected the elderly and seemingly quiet Montrealian(ite?) to give us our first dose of the strong Quebecois pride found in our new home city.

This blog really began three years ago when we each started an apprenticeship with the master guitar maker Sergei de Jonge. After living, working, and experiencing life with the incredible de Jonge family we thought that it was time for the next chapter in our lives. Taking the next logical step: we moved to a strange new city where we don't speak the language, don't know our way around, and don't have a place to live (other than our shop).
Who could imagine that the best description of our new home would come from a taxi driver? On our second night in the shop a long time friend of Jeremy's was in town and we invited her over for dinner. When the taxi cab pulled up the clearly concerned driver repeatedly asked: "Are you sure you want to be dropped off here?"

Despite the professed lack of faith on the part of the cabbie we feasted on glorious brown rice and lentils. The lack of conventional furniture didn't bother us in the least and dinner was served on, quite possibly, the most valuable dinning set in the building.

Seriously though, it is really shockingly expensive when you stop and think that we were siting on stacked sets of Brazilian rosewood and eating off a substantial slab of Honduras mahogany. For our first time entertaining a “shop guest” we think it went smashingly!

Many people have asked what we both consider the “necessities” of life. To the untrained eye, the picture below might appear to be a random pile of junk: banjo, classical guitar, steel string guitar, tenor guitar, ukulele, mandolin, three violins, 25 lbs. of brown rice, 2 lbs. of home roasted fair trade organic Ethiopian coffee (from the Yirgacheffe region of course), 23 litres of home brewed beer, cross-country skis, a box of books, Cd's, sheet music, many thousands of dollars worth of wood, various tools, jigs and the occasional article of (dirty) clothing. We might lack a place to sleep/eat/bathe (highly overrated in our opinion) but we DO have a shop space and we're pretty sure that we have everything that we'll need.

What can we say? We love it!

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