Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The glass studio is closed temporarily due to financial difficulties.

Although I've been a bit horrified at how my 401K and IRAs are losing money like water flowing down a drain, and have been disturbed at seeing news of layoffs and business closing, today's event has left me feeling very sad.

The glass studio is closed, temporarily (or so I hope).

I've been taking classes there for over a year now. Just recently, I started to feel truely at home there, that I was making real progress in my work, and in general, just enjoying my time there. I was looking forward to my classes that were supposed to start next week. I had plans for making things to give to my friends as gifts.

But, the glass studio is having financial issues and they sent out email today saying that they were "pausing operations". I don't know how long the pause will last. The Craft Center has been in existance for 152 years, so there's hope that they'll make it through this last problem. But maybe not. Other long-lived establishments are closing their doors. Little by little, this econonmic downturn is making itself felt in many, many different ways.

I knew the studio was having some financial issues. The director of the studio told me that revenue from tuition was down (and yet, all my classes were full). But, I never expected them to delay (or cancel?) the start of classes.

I feel lost. The only other studio with a flameshop is in Boston. It's far to go to for a weeknight class and it's in a neighborhood that I don't like. And there's a person I know who spends a lot of time there who I'd like to avoid seeing at all cost.

The interesting thing is that until this moment, I considered the glass work a hobby, something I really liked doing but not necessarily a passion. Maybe it really IS a passion. The thought of not having classes, not being at the glass studio every week is just heartbreaking for me.

So, instead of going to classes next week, I'll be looking for some substitute for classes. Sigh.

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