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looking at my mug

updated wed 19 dec 01


Janet Kaiser on tue 18 dec 01

On the other hand Chris, it may be worrying to others as to what exactly is
in your spittle, that would leach out an otherwise stable glaze?! :-)

Don't worry folks... following a very long battle with viruses, worms and
ensuing disk failure, I am only back for today, between visits to the pc
doctor and trying to get my other work (like mailing over 500 people,
writing, editing and printing an 8-page newsletter, sending out press
releases, etc. etc) done. It is not easy! Currently have two hard drives
and am frantically shovelling data around. Not just the obvious, but things
you don't even think about needing to install/save, like fonts and user
dictionaries! Up to now have saved my address book onto floppy, but have
not been able to install on second pc drive... All this acute hassle over
hours and days, because Microsoft no longer supports windows 95 or 98. Nor
do they support any product which is not being marketed and sold. As
windows 95 will not take Outlook Express/Explorer 6.0, I am having to
upgrade... Just too tiresome for words.

BTW I went "off-line" rather than risk infecting people. Only hit "receive
all" in three-four weeks now... Judging by the number of badtrans worms I
am still receiving daily, I guess some people are ignoring the problem and
are still happily using "send and receive". I feel this is very antisocial
behaviour. I would rather everyone thought me very rude for not replying to
their mail, than risk spreading disease! For those of you who have been
thinking of changing from OE, do have a look at Opera. My pc advisor says
it is now a viable alternative to Outlook Express AND Eudora. Fewer
"attacks" because it is a little used programme. Eudora having now
attracted the attention of more hackers/virus makers, since it has become a
universal system... It is a vicious circle, isn't it?

Anyway, all you Clay Buddies who think I am either rude or dead, please be
patient. I shall probably not be communicating again until this box of
tricks is truly sorted. Maybe my next day off, which will be Dec. 25th. Or
January 7th, the next day off after that...

Our Christmas exhibition, "Magical Bestiary" has some wonderful ceramics...
If I get good photos of "Celtic Shaman Ewe" and "Celtic Shaman Ram" I'll be
letting you know! A collaboration between Jan Beeny (ceramics) and Kathy
Williams (textiles) these beasties are wonderful. At 600 each, I guess
they will be well beyond the pockets of our clients even though we offer
interest-free credit, but at least we have been able to see them... BTW I
also think comparing prices between countries is a futile exercise.

I was talking to Isa about this today... It is all so RELATIVE. If you earn
100 per hour, a mug at 18-20 is not going to appear a great deal. On the
other hand, if you earn the minimum wage 3.70 per hour... Same thing goes
when exchange rates of someone earning in $, Yen, Euros, etc. mean that a
British Pound is already "expensive". Look at the difference between US and
Canadian $... The famous "cost of living" index makes it LOOK like you get
more per dollar than we do per pound in the UK. When comparing prices of
ceramics abroad, you first have to know what people earn on average and
what other products cost in the local economy. For example: mousetrap
cheese costs 3-4 per pound, a small cabbage cost 77p here today, 20
cigarettes 4.20, return train journey Criccieth-London 60, a modest, two
bedroomed house 120,000 (average), land 5,000 per acre, a Christmas tree
10 per foot, petrol 85p per litre (here locally), local telephone calls 1p
per minute evenings/weekends, 4p per min. weekdays plus monthly rental and
17.5% tax. Besides the 17.5% value added tax (VAT) we also pay "rates" (a
local government tax fixed on the value of the property) on domestic
housing and business rates (fixed on the size and rent value of the
property) for commercial premises: add 2000 (min) per annum... Indeed, I
heard of a greengrocers in Bath which had to close down recently, because
the rates had been increased to 50,000 p.a!!! Many shops have closed in
our town because the rates are crippling and need to be paid before you
even open the doors...

Anyway, you get the idea? How can I then go to other countries and say that
the work there is "so cheap"? With our cost of living, only metropolitan
Tokyo would be "more expensive". And vice versa... ANYONE visiting the UK
will find it is "expensive". Even rural places like Criccieth, it will cost
20 per person, per night for Bed and Breakfast in a modest guest house.
Hotels are more like 50-60!! So glad we live here and don't have to
visit! :-)

All go at this time of year, isn't it? We are getting 18-20 visits per day.
Selling about one item and a couple of cards daily. Noting large or over
50. A worry when lighting a heating are on all day, every day. Still have
to be there of course...

We are also hosting an old college friend of mine until Friday... Isa and I
have only met up once before since 1977. We went to college here and in the
US together... Lots of shared memories to keep us up chatting... Originally
for Sierra Leone, she now lives in Virginia and works at the George
Washington University in DC. And do you know what she did when I asked her
to bring me a couple of Ceramic Monthlies over? She hit the website and
ordered a subscription for 2002!!! I am so happy!! :-) Now I will know what
all you guys are talking about for a whole year!! Cool! :-)

In case I don't get to mail everyone, "Happy Holidays" and a healthy,
peaceful and prosperous New Year one and all. I will not be climbing Mt.
Snowdon for the Winter Solstice on Friday (a 'modern' Celtic custom) but
I'll be lighting a candle and thinking of you all when we toast "to friends
near and far" following HM the Queen's message to the Commonwealth on
Christmas Day (3 p.m. GMT). With no close family any more, you are all a
substitute family, whether you like it or not! Clay Art and especially the
Path Makers...

Indeed, better than a family, because we needn't attend weddings,
christenings and funerals or speak to the family grouch if we don't feel
like it!

Janet Kaiser - where we may even have a white Christmas!! Fingers
The Chapel of Art . Capel Celfyddyd
Marine Crescent . Criccieth LL52 0EA . GB-Wales . UK
TEL: (++44) 01766-523570
Home of The International Potters' Path
----- Original Message -----
> With all the chat re: the mug exchange, I just really looked at my
> favorite mug and saw that the formerly blue rim has leached out white on
> side I drink from. Yuck !! What an awful feeling to wonder what I have
> absorbed - especially since the glaze is blue.