Like you can already guess from title, I’ve been rather busy lately. I had a chance to do at least 3 new things: travel to States, attend Atlanta Blade Show (THE knife show) and after that attend Engrave-In. I’ll try to write short overview of them all.
In many ways it’s an interesting and strange country for me. I’m used to more European way of living, so when travelling around in Europe, at least in central part of it, isn’t that much different from Estonia. Maybe a little more civilized and cleaner etc. But America had quite a few strange things in store for me. All in all I could say that everything is bigger. Roads, cars, food portions and, yes, people too. While here we have rarely any 2-lane highways, there the usual norm seemed to be something like 4-5 lanes. So driving through the center of Atlanta at 130 km/h was quite strange experience.
And, my’o’my, about 50% of cars seemed to be SUV’s. No wonder you people complain about gas prices going higher. In addition we didn’t see that many people walking around. You guys don’t even have roads for walking. At some places we had to literally walk over flowerbeds to get to the other side of the road. Also, no public transportation to talk about. You guys are too comfortable with all those cars :). Oh yeah, and no bicycles either.
But I loved the nature. Fortunately we had a chance to drive around in Tennessee and what a sightseeing it was with all those big mountains.
I loved the people. We had a chance to stay at 2 families during our trip and meet many other people at Blade and Engrave-In. I’d say 110% of kindness and helpfulness. Everybody went just out of their way to make us comfortable and see that we had everything we needed. We lived there like king’s cats. I also liked that people were so easy going and open, seemed to take life easier and enjoy it more. Here, when travelling by public transport, I sometimes have a real struggle not to laugh, because all people seem to be so sad, depressed or angry. I don’t know why they make life so hard.
Atlanta Blade Show
Now that was an experience. 3 days and about 600 exhibitors. Top makers from all over the world. If you’re a knife nut or a maker, this is definitely a show to visit. So much to see, so much to buy, so much inspiration. Also the biggest show I’ve ever been. There was actually the first time I could see in real life real high-end handmade custom knifes and engravings. A real treat for me.
During the Blade I got my Lindsay Classic with PalmControl from Ray Cover (Lindsay sent it to him, so I wouldn’t have to pay for international shipping and fees). If you don’t know, then Steve’s PalmControl is THE Cadillac of engraving world. Just the sweetest, coolest and most useful engraving one could imagine to have. And I have it! Nice thing about it is, that it doesn’t require much air and works even with CO2 tanks. So here is how my table at hotel looked one evening:
This was engravers get-together meeting after the Blade at Scott Pilkington‘s place. A very cool event, too. Many excellent and superb engravers were there along with many beginners, including me. There we had 2 seminars: one from Joe Rundell about carving wood and gold overlay and second was from Paul Hamler about investment casting. Both were very informative and I learned a lot from those.
There I also got to see the coolest gun I’ve ever seen. It was engraved by Joe Rundell. It wasn’t yet ready, but even at that stage it was very-very impressive. So far he has spent over 2000 hours on this engraving and he said he’s little over half done with it.
All in all it was a very nice trip and I’m really happy about it. I definitely want to go back to USA someday to visit the people I met there.