I've just had a very exciting delivery.
The polystyrene box looks uncannily similar to those seen in medical documentaries, urgently transporting donor organs via police escorted couriers.
Fleetingly I considered that it might contain a new brain, to replace my dysfunctional, sclerosis raddled one, but no.
The contents were much more exciting than that.....
Can you guess what it is yet?
After carefully opening the lid, the vaguely medical theme continued with layers of air-filled plastic bubbles laid over two boxes as if to keep the contents temperature controlled and hermetically sealed.
I can probably guess what you're thinking.
How can I get so excited about a bag of mud?
Well you're probably right. I don't get out much. However, regular readers will remember the sturm and drang earlier this year when I couldn't find a source of porcelain casting slip the same as the one I'd been using for over two decades, and which has been discontinued. At the time there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth as I tried an alternative slip which was absolutely dreadful for very tiny castings.
Then my supplier sent me a sample box of a brand new slip, apparently made to the original formulation which I had so loved.
The rest, as they say, is fairly recent history. For the past few days I've been using slip from the sample box, which is practically perfect in every way. I used the last few spoonfuls yesterday so the timely arrival of two 3 litre boxes this morning is very welcome.
I have only one minor gripe. Presumably in order to facilitate shipping, the company (New York Doll Products) have abandoned the use of plastic tubs and now package the slip in a heavy duty plastic bag, packed within a cardboard box. Obviously, once opened the slip must be decanted into an airtight container so it's just as well that I still have two old Seeley's tubs, otherwise I would be, to use a technical term, buggered.
There is one advantage to the polybag packaging though. During storage, slip gradually settles, resulting in a very thick sludge at the bottom and very watery sludge at the top. Before use the slip must be thoroughly mixed. If it's in a plastic tub, this necessitates the use of a long handled slotted spoon, and lots of elbow grease. However in the bag it's possible to pummel the slip, breaking up any lumps and facilitating the mixing process, so that when it's subsequently poured into a tub the mixing is soooooo much easier.
Well that's the theory anyway. I'll let you know later how it works in practice.....