Or maybe attempting to catch up would be more accurate. The last two weeks have been a blur, but I'm slowly climbing back up to the top of the Things Which Must Be Done list. Of course, from up here you have a clear view of just how much remains To Be Done.
I survived the conference and it went well. I enjoyed the Peter, Paul & Mary concert, I got to talk to George McGovern, hear Jeffrey Sachs (interesting guy), hear Bill Clinton (a little disappointing), recruit a few new volunteers and generally make a good work-related impression on a lot of people.
The Twins lost. Spectacularly. Enough said.
I've done a fair amount of knitting, but almost no spinning in the last couple of weeks. Knitting is much more portable and I haven't been home much. My work-related travels last week took me to Syracuse, Indiana, via Fort wayne. This involved flying on at least two commuter planes, aka puddle jumpers. My seatmate on one of these flights was a woman who was genuinely alarmed that I had been allowed to board the plane with four implements which clearly could be used to Kill Someone. Most of us would see these as four, size 2, double pointed needles. I tried to point out that they were currently involved in the making of a sock and weren't likely to do anyone harm but she continued to mutter about "won't let you bring shampoo on, but you can bring Those Things..."
I took the opportunity to visit two yarn shops. The first shop, Knitting Today , is a delightful store located out in the country about 45 minutes north of Ft. Wayne. It has the feel of a country general store, but dedicated to all things fiber. The owner, Lea Ann, had just the right combination of helpfulness without being obnoxious. She carried a number of pattern companies that I was not familar with and did a wonderful job of displaying project ideas in little nooks and crannys all over her store. Since I knew that this was the first stop of two, I exercised restraint in the spending. If I had known ahead of time how disappointing the second shop would be, I'd have spent more money at Knitting Today.
The second shop, The Cass St. Yarn Depot, is located in Ft. Wayne. In the charm category it wins very high marks as it is located in a historic train depot. Otherwise, I wasn't impressed. For one thing, they don't have much yarn. Really. Knitting Today had twice the inventory. The Yarn Depot did have a nice display of books and magazines. The shop did not have a very welcoming feel and the staff weren't particularly friendly. Quite a contrast from Knitting Today.
I know that I am very spoiled living in the Twin Cities where we have at least a half dozen excellent yarn shops, but sheesh, you expect a yarn shop to have yarn!
The trip allowed me to finish a pair of socks. I'm also working on a Booga bag (almost done), another set of fingerless mitts (done with one, halfway done with the second) and another square on the Lizard Ridge afghan. This morning I finished blocking my Fair Isle bag (shown in previous post). It's amazing what a difference blocking makes. It's like magic. The bag will be done as soon as I weave in about 4,693 ends and make the strap.
Tonight I hope to start my Socktoberfest socks -- the yarn, pattern and the double-point needles arrived from KnitPicks while I was gone. I've already used the needles on another project and have to say I love them. They're very light, just the right length and have nice, sharp points. Love the yarn (Gloss), love the color (pumpkin) and I can't wait to get started.
The Secret Pal 9 swap is well underway, I'm being spoiled and trying my best to spoil my pal. Details, later.
I will post pictures. Soon!