I made it home to Winthrop, really and finally, yesterday at 1 pm after beginning the journey Tuesday morning at 8:30 am. It’s nice to finally be home. My adventure consisted of driving 45 minutes to the Orlando airport, waiting in several ridiculously long lines, well, two to be precise, only to have my 10:15 flight delayed by two hours. Michigan was slammed with snow; my home town was expecting 8″ – 12″, too. I had my Irish wool Sharfik at hand and knit the two hour delay away. It never ceases to amaze me how easily one meets people when knitting.
When I first got to the gate and learned of my delay, I found the only seat available and pulled out the knitting. A middle-aged woman was sitting to my right and I noticed that she kept glancing at my knitting. And who wouldn’t? It is a beautiful scarf. I offered her a closer look and extended the end towards her. She purred in delight at the authenticity of the wool and began telling me how upset she was that she put her own knitting in her checked baggage. Luckily, I had a second scarf in a simple pattern to offer her. We knit for 30 minutes together, me on the sharfik, she on the moss stitch scarf. She told me how her mother is a very skilled knitter and how it makes her sad that she uses Red Heart yarn for her intricate works. Once she made a beautiful sweater out of real wool, intending it for her husband, but it was too large, so she gave it to someone else. Then the mother knit the sweater again, in Red Heart. How heartbreaking. Come to find out, this woman was from Maine as well, and only a few towns away from where I live. She teaches business courses at Lawrence High school. I applied to that school this summer. In another path of life, we would have been colleagues.
This woman eventually got up to get something to eat and her seat was quickly replaced by another passenger. Across from me, there was a young family, a mother, father, grandmother, and two young boys. The boys kept glancing up from their hand-held computer games and looked at what I was doing. They were very shy and as soon as I made eye contact, their eyes darted down. Eventually, the mother commented on my scarf and I offered the end of it to her little boy. He knelt on the floor in front of me and traced the cables with his little fingers and rubbed the wool. He looked up and smiled. They eventually got on their plane and I sat alone again, knitting.
Not much later, another person came and sat to my left. He was tall, dark hair and dark complexion. I dare say he has middle eastern blood in him. He glanced at my knitting and told me he just learned to cable. I looked at him over my glasses, as I was just about to create a cable, and asked him if he’d like to learn how to cable without a cable needle. He nodded and I handed him the knitting and explained how to do it. He was amazed at how much easier it was than with a cable needle. Come to find out, he’s from Queens and has been knitting for two years. He’s a second grade ESL teacher and we talked at length about pedagogy and challenges teachers and students face. All the while, I let him add rows to the Sharfik with little instructions interspersed in the conversation. Then his flight to Buffalo was called and he left.
I knit the whole 2 hour plane ride, as well. I increased the scarf by about 10 inches that day. I got home to Maine about 3 pm on Tuesday to find the storm was really gearing up. It took me an hour to drive from the Portland airport to an apartment in Yarmouth, a trip that typically takes 25 minutes in heavy traffic. I ended up stranded in Yarmouth, instead of journeying all the way to Winthrop. Again, luckily I had my knitting. I put on another 5 inches last night. My scarf that I began the first day of the trip back on Dec. 21 is almost done.
To finish the travel story, I was stuck in Yarmouth until yesterday at noon. I scraped 10 inches of snow and an inch of ice off my car yesterday morning when I was getting ready to go. It was not much fun. And, of course, I didn’t bring a single pair of wool socks with me so my feet were freezing in my thin summer-weight socks. I finally entered my apartment for the first time in two weeks yesterday at 1 pm.
Then in the evening, my friend Amy from The Lawsons Do Dallas came over at 8 pm and we caught up on life stuff while I taught her how to knit. She cast on for a simple fulled hand bag, specifically the Lopi Tote from Hello Yarn in Kiwi from Brown Sheep Co. We lost track of time while knitting and talking. She ended up leaving around 11 pm. She had put on about half an inch on her first project ever. Not only had we caught up on three years, but she made significant progress on a new hobby. Not bad for an evening’s work!
To top it all off, I lost my cell phone and forgot about it until 11:30 last night. I use it for an alarm clock, too. I nearly panicked trying to figure out how I’d wake up at 5 am to get to school until I remembered that the Wal-Mart in Augusta a 24-hour store. That saved me. Unfortunately, the only other shopper in the store was a woman who decided to go Christmas sale shopping at midnight and had two, yes two, full carts of knick knacks and she was in front of me in line at the only register that was open. I stood there with my one item for 30 minutes while she haggled over prices and had the clerk scan each item twice to make sure the price was correct. Eventually I made it home, fell asleep, and put in a full day at school.
The point of this long drawn out post is that knitting is amazing. It brings people together from all walks of life and parts of the world. It builds bridges, strengthens relationships, and keeps us warm. I’m glad I’m a knitter.