We drove to Amherst Island yesterday morning to check in on the weekend walling course being taught there. Two very competent instructors Kenny Davies and Sean Donnelly of Dry Stone Canada had things well in hand. There was a nice buzz. A friendly collection of helpers were there as well to show support, and help out with bringing more stones and cheering the students on. It was a well run event.
Because the stones and the people are always different, no two workshops are ever the same. It's not like being on a work crew learning to lay bricks every day.
The potential for creativity, the group interaction, the new friendships formed and the problem solving that goes on in these types of events transcends the emphasis on just maintaining some 'standard' or merely trying to build structurally 'correct'.
I know of no other craft that provides such a rare opportunity for participants to be uniquely involved in the completion of something so completely unique.