I met the first knitter I ever knew at a bus stop in the Seattle neighbourhood of Fremont. She was working on mittens. It was 8:30 am on a crisp but dry October day. I sat there in awe as she worked her needles and spoke about all things and nothing. She had a dreamy little voice and I hung on her every word like a kitten following a key dangled by a length of yarn. She said she was going to take the bus and “just go, you know? I need to just go and see my sister in Poulsbo. And then maybe keep going. Maybe go see my brother in Vancouver. I don’t know. But I will finish these mittens on the way. I’ll need them soon.”
There was something very sad but beautiful about what she talked about. She said she had things she had to do and she had a far way to go. I nodded like I knew even though I didn’t, really. Little did know that I had a far way to go, too. But I had appointments to keep and opportunities to turn. Life was just too full of the things I needed to do to accept the lessons right away. When she boarded the bus, she gave me a a small wave. Her words wrapped around and around in my mind. The bus pulled way and the last glimpse I had of her through the window was of her bowed head. She would be working her needles again. Nothing mattered but getting those mittens done. It would be cold soon— especially where she was going. Looking back, this brings to mind a quote from one of my favourite writers, Jack Kerouac. He wrote; “But no matter, the road is life.” For her the knitting was life at that moment as she embarked on some enigmatic road trip.
Speaking of on the road, Yankee Yarns will be On The Road in September. We are away on a coach trip to Yarndale! on September 23rd. The coach will be picking us up across from the shop at the Redgate Pub at 8 am. Then we will go, W.I.P.s on our sticks to the event in Skipton where we will get a chance to look at all things yarn! This will be my first Yarndale and all I can say is that I am looking forward to it more than Christmas! We will spend the day there browsing and buying to our heart’s content until we catch the bus back to Mansfield at 4 pm. It’s £20 for the bus so if you fancy a road trip, drop into the shop and speak to Our Fearless Leader Sara at the shop and book on to the coach!
To book the admission fee for the event itself, you will need to book online at http://yarndale.co.uk/buy-tickets-2017/ Tickets cost £8. If you prefer to pay at the door, the price is £10.
So which W.I.P. will I be bringing with me? I believe the best kinds of projects to take on road trips are anything on a circular needle. I have a top-down jumper that I am working on and the needles I am using are some from the new range of Knit Pro Needles we stock at Yankee Yarns. They are called Royale. They are colour-coded laminated birch wood needles. They start from 3mm (US 3) and go up to the 12mm (US17). They come in Purple Passion, Royale Blue, Aquamarine, Orange Lily, Fuchsia Fan, Grey Onyx, Cherry Blossom, Misty Green, Candy Pink and Burgundy Rose.
I first decided to try these on a whim. I was attracted to the colours like a bee is to flowers.But it is not just the aethestic design with the smooth surfaces and shiny brass tips. They are a perfect balance of form and function. I use the fixed circulars. They have a swivel mechanism that allows the cable to rotate. This helps with smooth, kink-free knitting and absolute flexibility.
Knitting with these needles feel smooth and effortless.The laminated wood holds yarn in place without sticking like bamboo but feel sturdy in my hands. They just feel more solid than my other wooden circulars. They are the best needles I have knit with so far. The cord is light but strong and it is easy to get lost in the minutes as I knit into the hours.
So I am all ready for being on the road.