When I was in Bath, De at Midsomer Quilting let me use her class room when the shop was shut to do some quilting - piecing is possible in the flat, quilting most definitely is not. I was making a reversible quilt and limited in thread to what I had with me/ could buy in the shop which (wonderful though it is) does not stock my preferred Bottom Line by Superior. So, I had a 30 weight Sulky in the bobbin ( way heavier than I would usually use but it looks good in the reversible back) and a King Tut in the top and set off doing my favourite leaf motif.
All was well. I went out for lunch. Ate a wonderful cheesecake. Came back. Machine had a hissy fit. Probably because I did not bring her any creme egg cheesecake. No way would the tension work on the bottom. (My machine is definitely a girl machine). I cleaned her. I oiled her. I played with the tension. I talked nicely to her.I swapped the bobin case. I changed her needle and promised her a whole cake to herself. I turned the quilt upside down and reversed the threads. More hissy fitting. I turned her off and sulked all the way home. I had not even planned to quilt ( as opposed to piece) whilst I was away but now I had started, the new plan was to finish the thing and she was not playing along. BAD machine. Clearly she needed to go to hospital.
I look in the local phone book. Bath Sewing Machine centre ( 'Two hours service: we collect') is five mins walk away albeit via some ridiculously steep streets. I ring at 8.30 the next am. Can he fix my Janome Memorycraft, NOW? Yes, he can do it if I bring in in straight away. Bring it? I thought he collected. No, not today because he is in the shop alone. I call a taxi. I get there. Shop closed. But hang on - didn't he answer the phone twenty mins ago? Apparently he has it on divert. I sit on a stone bench across the road and pretend I am an undercover cop on surveillance. The shop looks ominously shabby. The machines in the window are - well, antique. But then we use a magic cobbler at home who works out of a hovel and does great work. Means nothing.
The man eventually arrives. He tells me off for ringing so early. (Excuse me? Why have your hovel, sorry, shop phone diverted to home if you don't want customers to ring you?) He peers at the machine.
"Oooh." he says. "It be com-pew-'ur- ised. They're buggers them things when they go wrong, they are." (Anyone not familiar with a strong Somerset accent please think 'Pirates').
I put a protective hand on my machine. I am sure she shrinks towards me in a combination of contrition and fear that she might get left with this butcher.
"Do you know what you are doing with it?"
"Not really, no."
Right. He did lend me his phone book and I rang the Husqvarna centre which I had previously ignored despite knowing where it was since they are an entirely different brand. No problem, bring it in. I call another taxi. The driver's wife is a sewer of children's clothes and we talk overlockers and I pretend not to notice that he is driving the long way around under the pretext of not wanting me to have to cross the road when we get there. That's the road with the pedestrian crossing ten yards from the shop.
At the Husqvarna Studio Bath the nice man in this Photo spends quite some time fiddling with it. Fixes it, won't charge me and lets me leave it there for a few hours while I go shopping. Nice man - go and buy some fabric from him if you are in Bath.
Why I am I telling you this now? Because I have just finished the quilting and the machine is purring like a fluffy little lap cat. Good girl! Now, what happened to that dessert I could swear I left in the fridge?