I’ve never been great at building or working on things with my hands- woodwork– mechanics– electronics– they arent really my fortay. Everytime I buy a new piece of camera equipment for one of my cameras, I tend to stare at it, Google terrible instructions and then walk up to my male roommate and ask him to put it together.
And to be fair, When I built the birdhouse with my mom, I admit, she did most of the leg work.
To be honest, I don’t remember ever successfully putting together a puzzle as a child. Sad isn’t it?
So when my friend Jason offered me the opportunity to learn how to weld with him over Thanksgiving , I accepted with an abundance of excitement. “learn to be good with my hands— yes why of course I’ll do that!”
To my surprise — and maybe even to Jason’s, I picked up welding pretty quickly. I followed his directions, pulled down my mask so not to blind myself and did what felt like chiseling away. After just a couple of attempts I had welded in a straight line and Jason had applauded my efforts. However, if I said the straight line was the most rewarding part-I would be lying.
While welding away with metal– I was also welding away at something else–a friendship.
Much like my birdhouse making experience with my mom, the welding experience served as a really great bonding experience.
I met Jason two years ago at NYC Media, where I used to work. Over the last two years, we developed a friendship full of morning hellos and afternoon goodbyes–and small talk about our personal projects during breaks in the work day. On only one occasion did we head out to lunch. Sadly, neither of our schedules matched up to allow for more than an occupational friendship.
So when J first said we should do a hobby together back in April– I jumped . Again, our schedules conflicted. But finally, just this past weekend our schedules matched- and we were hobbying. We were being… Friends.
I met Jason’s fiancé, rode around in a 1969 mustang that J built, and got an opportunity to see what life was like for him outside of our 26th floor office. A lot of people asked me what I’d be making at my welding lesson—before the lesson, I wasn’t quite sure–and now I have a good answer for that, no wait–a GREAT answer for it: I was making a friendship.
Check out Jason’s current project at jsworks.org