This piece, made from soda lime glass in a Corning Museum of Glass studio is my first-ever attempt at hot glass forming. (Substantial assistance was provided by a very experienced glass blowing instructor.)

I am very fortunate to be selected to train to become a Corning Museum of Glass “Glass Guide” (formerly called a docent).  I’ll be trained over the next several months to learn the basics of the art, history, and technology of glass; become more familiar with CMoG’s glass works and resources spanning 3500 years; and learn how to help the Museum’s guests have an enjoyable and rewarding experience at the Museum.

I was motivated to pursue this as a retirement activity to do something worthwhile for the community, challenge my brain with continuous new learning experiences, and “rub elbows” with some superbly talented Museum staff and a rich variety of guests.

Basically this is about my health.  Lori and I have the fundamentals of diet and exercise covered but I need something to keep the noggin healthy.  Research has shown that challenging the mind is crucial to it’s continued function and combating many of the effects of aging. Similarly, maintaining quality social interactions has great benefits for emotional and mental health.

I couldn’t think of a much more effective way to keep mentally active than working at a world-class museum with the world’s largest collection of glass objects, the world’s most comprehensive library of all materials related to glass, and an extraordinary staff devoted to research, teaching, and sharing the fascinating story of this one substance.

My first day of class I even got to make my first piece of glass art in one of the glass studios.  How cool is that?