So….I spent the weekend in Michigan. On the surface it may not sound like much fun to anyone else. Get up before dawn, ride (and never drive) across parts of three states to go to a tool show, pass within a stone’s throw of the University of Michigan (for a Columbus, Ohio, native this is somewhat creepy), watch a Will Ferrell movie, and eat takeout in the hotel room. But I think if you had met us, and all our children, and understood exactly how long it’s been since Velcro Boy (Jack, dear, I’m talking about you) was pried from my leg, you’d know how special we could make this.
Here’s what we rode in. Every time people were staring at us and I thought it was because I was knitting in public, I had to stop and think, oh wait, it’s probably just the truck. It even had California plates, so we were utterly conspicuous wherever we went. When the engine got revved it sounded like a chainsaw convention. However, the amenities were terrific. Dual climate controls, heated seats, a GPS navigation system, neon interior lighting…. once I got over thinking I had to haul myself into the cab via a knotted rope, it was quite comfortable.
I got a TON of knitting done riding in the truck. I took only two projects: Kelp Forest, and the supplies for my second salt and pepper sock. And all I worked on was Kelp Forest. As we cruised towards Ann Arbor the first time, I was doing a felted join in the car. As by the time we were cruising past it headed west on Sunday, I realized I really had memorized the pattern. I got 20 repeats out of the first skein, and probably won’t need more than two skeins. It feels great to know I’m more than halfway done.
I also had a secret — not one but two pairs of socks for Mr. Beth, to be given as anniversary presents. To skip ahead, he loves them, and has declared them The Best Socks In The World, even if they don’t fit exactly (or, in the case of the Patons Kroy jacquard, don’t match exactly).
The tool show was…a tool show. It was kind of like going to a quilt vendor expo in a fabric mill’s warehouse, without a show of finished quilts. So at least I had something to compare it to, as DH worked the booths and found sales guys to talk to about their latest boxes, tools, and hardware.
That didn’t take long, and when we were done it was off to Howell to visit Beth at The Spinning Loft.
A spinning class had just finished when I let myself in, so I just wandered around and talked to her friends while she took care of business. I wanted to touch everything, but managed to restrain myself.
There was fiber:
And there were many bags of woolen locks:
There were skeins of locally spun yarn:
There were spindles:
And there was Beth, who didn’t want her picture taken again:
And the very first thing she asked me, when we got to sit down, was: “Have you seen what’s been happening on the Mystical Creations Yarn thread on Ravelry?”
We had a good meetup (even though I discovered I had to get to know my spinning goddesses better), and then it was time to buy a souvenir. I finally decided on the winter issue of Wild Fibers (always wanted to check it out, and it seemed like time) and a big fluffy cloud of BFL to spin up…someday. I knew it was the right one to buy when Beth rubbed it against her face before ringing it up.
Then, at the last second, she grabbed a baggie and put it in the bag too. “You just have to have this.” A little baggie stuffed with Merino top.
Oh yeah…I gave her some chocolate, too. We’re good buddies now, Beth-her and Beth-me.
The rest of the evening included, but was not limited to, going out to see Semi-Pro without children, going to Meijer without children, and picking up carry-out from Outback to eat while we watched the Australian Grand Prix without children.
Sunday morning included going out to breakfast without children, driving within a stone’s throw of the University of Michigan stadium without children, and stopping at a winery for a tasting without children. And we bought wine too! I felt like such a grown up.
We got to talk, and plan, and just do stuff together. Maybe next year we can do it again.
ETA: I have been trying to post this all day. !@#$%!!