Robin and I have run an indigo class together three times now, and worked with a vat outside of class several more. The first time, she was new to the beast. Now, we do this thing together.
Here's how it works. We roll up and unload the buckets and the pile of class materials. Robin analyses the space and graciously introduces us to everyone in the room. I wave and smile and zoom off in search of hot water. She politely wrangles a garbage sack out of the kitchen lady and reports that she's territorial about the kitchen. Armed with this key knowledge, I take my buckets, and tell the kitchen lady that they're food grade, have been through the dishwasher, and may I please fill them in her wash tub. She says yes. Phew. One hurdle overcome with Agent Robin's recon.
We balance the vats together. I'm teaching Robin how to make sure a vat works for a large class. She's calling me on my overconfidence -- which is always good. As we settle the pH into place, she sees what can go wrong and how to fix it. Now there are two of us who can rescue a vat that starts to veer off onto a bad place during a class, and we know that with an hour setup we can get the show on the road.
During our little demo for the participants in FLAIR, Robin grabs the stack of books out of my hands and laughingly tells everyone that I'm a physical talker and she's just saved them from having books thrown at them. It's true. She sees that the class is not grasping my physical explanation of an accordion fold, and gives them a short verbal explanation that brings everyone around to oh! of course! Gratitude on my part.
I move back to the room with the vats, ready to explain that you really must be gentle or people behind you will not get good results. SLOW DOWN AS YOU DIP THAT SCARF, MA'AM. (Officer Erika? Who? Me?). Robin stays inside with the binders and folders. She walks around and encourages people through their insecurities. She gives people ideas for a reliable outcome. She talks the woman who is sure she's going to get a bad result down from her tree, calms her, and sets her back on course. She says: Yes, iron the folds. If you tighten that clamp the edges of the color will be cleaner, looser will make it feathery at the edges. You want dots? This is how you make dots.
She's watched and seen what my weaknesses are, and made me aware of them in a gentle and helpful way. She steps in and balances my slightly haywire self with calmness and encouragement. Yay team! I hope I can support Robin in the same way when she takes on a large class, and I can't wait to teach with Lisa and see what she brings to the mix.