It’s all about the preparation

Bellringing and baking have at least one thing in common.  They both require a certain amount of preparation.

For an experienced bell ringer learning new methods requires homework to be done before you get to ring it. Printing the blue line off, writing it out lots of times, practising on a simulator, reciting the work of each bell until it sticks. Then, when you get to ring it, either on tower bells, handbells or virtual platform, doing it over and over again until you “see” the patterns and it starts to stick.

Baking requires a plan of what to bake, when to bake it, what ingredients are needed and equipment. Not to mention the “to share or not to share” debate.

Of the two, I’ve always found baking easier to prep for. I can spend a week or longer deciding if I’m going to bake something, what it might be, what day I’ll bake it and when and who gets it eat it. For example for a week now I’ve been thinking about what to do with some left over mascarpone and homemade raspberry jam. Sunday lunch dessert would be a perfect opportunity. Hmm, what to do though? KISS, keep it simple, stupid. Buy some meringue nests, slather the mascarpone and jam on top et voila. Dessert is served.

This coming week I need to learn two bellringing methods. Ipswich Surprise Minor, which I have rung in the dim and distant past, and Bourne Surprise Minor, something completely new.

Ipswich is needed for Thursday night and Bourne on Friday. When will I start preparing?

My trouble is, if I know I’m only going to ring it on the one occasion is it worth the investment of all that preparation? I have learned new methods for quarter peals before, just enough effort put in to get through the quarter, then instantly forgotten as soon as we’ve stopped ringing.

However, other people I will be ringing with will have put considerable effort into learning the methods. In order to support them I really should too. And it would help my own ability to ring other things more regularly if I made the effort to learn it thoroughly.

The quality of the output is commensurate with the quality of input. You get out what you put in.

Well Sunday lunch dessert looks OK, hope it tastes good too. Will my ringing next week be equally prepared?


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