I mentioned at the end of last year that I'm baking full time, as in, I'm a baker. One of three (bread bakers) at relatively small bakery, meaning that I usually only get one bread shift per week, as we do everything by hand from start to finish: no mixers, shapers, etc. (Otherwise I do muffins/cookies or laminated doughs and cakes).
With the head baker in Argentina for ten days I picked up a whole handful of shifts (in fact, I got two weeks without making muffins, which is wonderful). Doing bread once a weeks means a blunted learning curve and long days (often thirteen-and-a-half hours) with a week to forget some subtle motion of the last shift. Even working two consecutive days -- and then three consecutive days -- has led to what seems a vast improvement. My baguettes will always need improvement, and shifts in protein and moisture in the flour this week didn't help, but I'm feeling more and more comfortable in each movement. And I'm shaving off hours from my days.
...Which means, being probably a bit obsessive, more time for baking at home. I made a three-and-a-half pound miche last week that far surpasses any of the other's I've made. I used a high-extraction flour -- something between white and whole wheat, only part of the bran being taken off -- which led to a light bread for having the richness and keeping quality of whole wheat. I also used a higher amount of pre-fermented flour (more of the sourdough build) which helps in all of those regards.
And now I have two days off (otherwise I'd be in bed by 8 pm).
(N.B.: We do have a Hobart mixer, if I made it sound like we had no electric mixers. We just aren't a bread factory with people who are mixers, shapers, etc. We do shape, load, etc by hand.)