Patti was correct! The big ol'thing is a 12 harness Leclerc loom, purchased for $500 and large enough to house a family of 12 if needed.
Promptly at 9 am, the truck arrived.
There were two huge cartons - one of which was so large and so heavy that the delivery man and I almost could not get it into the house (not a good sign!) but we did manage.
Much packing material was removed. No comment about Finn and Lucy still being in their jammies at 9:30 am. Let's just say life for homeschoolers is very, very good.
We decided to wait until Dan got home to unwrap the final layers of blankets. Few know that Dan has an Associates Degree from the Fashion Institute of Technology in textile design. In his case, this means weaving. Although, as he likes to say, he never spent a day in the industry, it clearly all came rushing back to him as he started identifying the part and explaining what they do. Here he is measuring the reed to see the ppi (picks?pics?pixs? per inch).
The loom has 14 treadles and 12 harnesses. It will do just about everything and certainly far more than I have ever imagined, particularly since I have never really imagined owning a loom. Yet somehow, when it was all unwrapped, I started imagining. It does look tempting!
By some fluke of city bureaucracy, our house, indeed our block, is zoned manufacturing rather than residential. After looking around our living room last night - spinning wheels, carder, loom, I thought that it might actually be a good thing.