Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Steel Still & Resins

I bought an electric incense burner. It's hard to believe that I don't have one, right? I've put it off because there were more exciting things to buy, like resins, and containers, and paper wrapping, and food. The necessities of life. Ha! I don't have it in my hands yet, but I will take pictures and report on its handiness once I get it.

I've been a bit antsy all day -- actually, since yesterday when I was blocked from the studio by my youngest son and his posse of miscreant friends who use the garage as a hookah and vape den. I have a mental list of incenses I want to work on, plus the two that are sitting in the studio waiting to be finished, and I can't get in there because the work needs quiet and the room isn't quiet at all. It's loud with guffaws and Pokemon Go, D and D talk, and Japanese anime fantasies. I literally hear them talking about katanas and dragons and wonder how old these people are because they look like adults but talk like 12-year-olds. Anyway, the point is, I can't get in there to work and I want to hit something, like a chunk of resin with a pestle.

I worked on some homemade charcoal to burn incense resin on and found that the recipe makes a crumbly, useless block. They won't catch fire and when they do they sputter and spit and instantly go out. I bought a huge box of coconut husk-based charcoals the other day and I'm bothered that they need to be re-lit often before they get a good burn going. Which is the reason I broke down and bought the electric incense burner. My daily frankincense ritual depends on this new burner. This morning I found that my stress level rose to a dangerous level when I couldn't keep the charcoal burning. I snapped at the dog, who looked at me confused, and then ran from the room. I never snap at the dog. He's hiding from me now and I feel like a schmuck. Even the cat who likes to tangle with my legs caught my ire when I yelled at him, "No! I don't have any chicken!" as he chirped pathetically. He's a chicken fiend and any opportunity to get chicken, he's johnny on the spot. There was no chicken to be had, and I sounded like a lunatic screaming at a begging cat.

Packages arrived today. The nifty steel still arrived, as did a few ounces of lovely raw resins. The still needs assembly and extra parts; tubing and clamps and some sort of water circulation set-up. I'm hoping to get the first distillation going the weekend after next. White sage is first as it's available.

I am looking forward to working in the studio. I've got a customer who claims to want to buy a 'Costco sized' portion of Himaya incense. I don't want to be the Costco of incense, but I do want to make my clients happy.

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