Bath.  I did some very un-Bath like things while I was here.  I didn’t have tea or visit the Jane Austen centre or do any shopping.  Instead I targeted a few things I wanted to see and one of these was the glass blowing place.

Bath Aqua Glass is a commercial glass blowing operation.  Meaning that they make individual hand made pieces but in large quantities.  So you can get whole wine glass sets and what not.  They do a famous Bath glass which is a lovely blue colour.  And did you know that a rich red colour is made from mixing gold into the glass.  Crazy.

They did a demo of glass blowing for us.  There was a guy (whose name I forget) who did the speaking and then Ian did the demo.  He made a one off piece that they would have sold, but sadly near the end it fell off the stick and broke.  It was sad.  He was annoyed with himself.  It looks extremely dangerous.  And it looked like he handled the glass casually, swinging around the pole with the hot glass on the end in and out of the fire and back to the bench, but I’m sure they are very safety conscious.  In the picture below he is using wet newspaper to shape the glass.  A very low tech, but proven method apparently.  It is so nice to see that there are places that can produce things that are so beautiful, delicate and intricate using such classical methods.

Ian, doing a demo piece

And then we all got to blow a glass bubble.  The ones we blew weren’t ones that could be anything.  We just blew until it broke basically.  It takes a tremendous amount of control.  I went first, that was kind of embarrassing, but I almost couldn’t even blow a bubble and then suddenly the bubble appeared.  Ian must have good lung control and have practiced for a lot of years.

This is what I did, except this isn’t mine because I forgot to ask someone to take a picture of me. Uh, traveling alone.


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