Or at least it should be a lesson for me.
This past summer, I had ambitiously signed up to take a class (Lara Ferroni’s Crullers and Cameras) that I thought was mostly about food styling. If you can’t tell, I am new to this blogging thing and felt that a food styling class would be ideal for me. Unfortunately, it turned out the class was primarily about making donuts (based on a newly released book the instructor wrote) and food styling second. And to top it off, they made the assumption that everyone there was an advanced user of their own camera. Which I am not. But the story gets better.
When I signed up, I had forgotten that this class was happening on a holiday weekend. I ended up inviting my sister and her husband to come up for the weekend. They were scheduled to arrive before the class though, giving us time to grab a fast lunch. I had it in my head we would eat a quick bowl of pho (Vietnamese noodle soup) and then the clan would drop me at my class before heading off to kill a couple hours (2 to be exact, as that was how long my class was) at the famous Pike Place Market, which was just up the hill from my class. The whole thing was flawlessly planned.
Then reality set in. My family arrived slightly later than scheduled, but this was not a big deal. We still had time to grab lunch before the class started. But then we got to the restaurant. What is normally a fast place to get a bite to eat, had turned into an ordeal. We were seated after a few minutes wait, even though the place was empty. Then the serving staff (who I am certain owns the place and does everything from cooking to serving as needed), sat at another table and did what appeared to be paying their bills and balancing their checkbook. Not kidding. So my lovely window for lunch was rapidly strinking. This lovely lunch experience was made more lovely by a little family/in-law tension, which I won’t bother to get into.
So by this time, I am scheduled to be dropped at my class. We managed to make it just 5-10 minutes late. But when I walk into the room, they are already making donuts and everyone looks at me like “Why are you so late?” I was kind of baffled by this response given that it was only 10 minutes, but I kept moving forward. The group was already making a batch of donuts. I assumed that the instructor had made the batter ahead of time so that we could whip up a batch and then dive into the food styling part. This is, of course, why I came. I was given my bag of goodies, that included her book, a piping bag, a couple of tips and maybe a couple other little things that I am forgetting about by this time. Anyway, I get my camera out and gather ’round. At this point, I look around at the other half dozen students and realize that they have some SERIOUS gear. They had stuff I had only seen at the camera shop. Then they started to get all camera-geeky on me. I literally felt like they were speaking a foreign language. It was aweful.
So we make a batch of donuts. And then another. And then another. I am now looking at my watch thinking “We will never be able to do ANY food styling at this rate!” Then I get a text from my spouse that he is already here (30 minutes early!) and ready to go – double parked even. So now I am really feeling the pressure to get this show on the road. I text back that we are just about to get “stylin'” (not in the ’80’s way he and I are used to – LOL!) and I need at least the 30 minutes that was scheduled to be the remainder of the class. Again, the Greek-speak starts again and I am lost. I am doing my best to play along and try to sort out what is being said. I go through the motions trying to remember what my damn camera manual had said about this or that. Again, aweful! Then the instructor decides that we have so much left to do, having just gotten started on styling, of course, that she wants another 60 or 90 minutes to really get us through this section of the class. That does it. I decide to simply say “I have to leave now” and then I gather my things and leave.
Later, when I was at home reflecting on this fiasco and got online to look at the class details again to see why it had gone so wrong, I noticed a small detail: the time of the class. Turns out I was an hour late. I also thought the class ended earlier. Besides the fact that I couldn’t use my camera, I had really screwed up. Gracious Lara was kind enough to reach out to me the following day to make sure that I was OK and wanted to see I wanted to attend another class. I confessed that I was in over my head but would be back for a styling class at a later date. Perhaps when I have an idea of how to use my camera. Or on a day when $100 for a donut doesn’t seem so bad. The saddest part of this whole thing: I never even got to eat a donut 😦