There's always prep work to be done. Organizing. Cleaning. Lifting and carrying. Walking.
First, I organize all the pieces by size. Dust off the kiln shelves. I carry trays of mugs, vases, bowls, masks and sculptures walking from the studio to the kiln in the garage. I lift each piece into the kiln, shifting it into place.
Like dog or cat sitting, there's a need for loving attention, gentle touching and yes, even saying the right words. I'd like to say that there's no talking involved, but I'd be lying. Even though the clay can't hear me, I still use my voice to puzzle over proper placement on the shelves and try to cajole a little more space here and there.
Whether, it's dog, cat or kiln sitting, there are things you can't predict, changes in what's needed or wanted that requires taking the time to get it right.
The biggest thing all these types of sitting takes is patience. I guess I figured that over time, kiln sitting even dog or cat sitting would be a predictable, easy routine. It's not. But, I have to admit, I like the challenge.