Gina wrote me this weekend and gently reminded me that it would be nice if I updated this thing again. Well, I actually have stuff to blog about, and it might get long, and I will remind you of the saying, "be careful what you wish for..."
So, at work this week, I was telling people how I was going to gay/lesbian/bi knit camp this weekend. (My friend Pete was so cute - "GLKC - kinda like Gay/Lesbian Knights of Columbus, only not"). Now, people at work are really cool and I am totally out and they all know about the knitting as regularly bring new purchases and FO's in for show and tell. What most people were fascinated with was the concept that I was driving almost 3 hours to spend the weekend with a bunch of people I have never met, other than exchanging e-mails on a group list. Yeah. Well, I thought, if I get there, and it's weird, home is not that far away.
It wasn't weird. Well...ok, maybe it was weird, but it was the GOOD kinda weird!! I headed out Friday, close to noon. Had good intentions of leaving earlier, but it was so gorgeous out that I ended up wanting to plant some flowers and enjoy the sun before I left. Dropped the boy off at doggie camp early, as he had hurt his leg earlier this week (nothing serious, but he is on some meds for it which is why I wasn't at knitting Wed nite - didn't feel comfortable giving him a new drug and then leaving - I missed you all).
My first stop on the way to Bennington, VT was in Concord at The Elegant Ewe. I've been wanting to make a Booga Bag and thought it would be nice to start one this weekend. I bought my first Kureyon. SO FUN to knit with as it reveals it's colors to me!! And, good mindless knitting for conversation this weekend. I continued on my way and got on Rt. 9, heading toward Keene and Brattleboro. I could not pass though Keene and not stop to hug my "favorite" - is she not gorgoeous?? Our visit was brief as I was really running late at this point, but a few minutes is better than none, and she will be home for the summer in a couple of weeks. I can't WAIT to have the girls home!!!
The ride to Bennington was so beautiful. I had the sunroof open and the music cranking - I think I listened to Melissa Etheridge most of the way. The rivers and streams were very active with all the recent rain and snow - I wish I had stopped to take some pictures!
I arrived at the Paradise Inn around 4 and met up with Ann . Ann and her partner Sadia live across from the Inn and did all the organizing for this wonderful event. There are not 2 nicer people on the planet you could ever hope to meet. I feel like they are my sisters I have known forever. We had talked on the phone a few times in planning the food for this weekend, and meeting in person, it was like we had met before! We took a drive to the post office and then came back and started getting the conference room ready for when people would be arriving. Before too long the gang arrived and Knit Camp was in full swing!! That first night we just hung out snacking and knitting and spinning and LAUGHING!!! It was as if we all hung out all the time - no awkwardness, everyone was just being their wonderful selves, it was as if this was what we did every Friday night!
Mel and David brought hummus that they made (OMG, it was sooooooo good). They are less than an hour away from here, and I know I will see more of them - perhaps they will even venture down to Manchester to hang with the Manchvegas knitters?? They also brought Melissa S. from Portsmouth with them! Not only does she knit, she is also a Nascar fan!! And since she has never been to a Nascar race, we are going to catch the Busch race at NHIS (we can knit racing socks!).
Saturday was a beautiful New England spring day. We gathered again in the morning for more knitting, spinning, demos, socializing, knitting, laughing...we all were pretty amazed at how well the group just came together. The day flew by waaaaay to quickly though. At some point in the afternoon a group of people heading over to Sadia and Ann's for dyeing. Sadly, I have no pictures of the beautiful creations, but I know some will appear this week and I will add them in! Same with a group picture...I felt bad for the woman at the inn who took pictures of us with all our many cameras, and since my camera is low-end, I will beg for a nicer one from someone else.
How amazing is it that something as simple as the act of knitting can bring people together? This whole weekend I kept wishing that the manchvegas group could have been there too...they have become my friends, the people I laugh with, the group that shares their good times and bad, the place where we can escape to every Wednesday night and come away feeling soooooo good. Same with camp. I wish I could get together with that group on a regular basis...and, we do have the internet and can stay connected that way...but wow...we never would have had this opportunity 10 years ago. (and I did manage to come away with an FO - my Cascading Leaves socks in the beautiful hand-dyed superwash from the Dublin General Store
I was proud of myself for not spending a boatload of money this weekend. I decided last week that I was not going to make the trek to Webs, mainly because of all the driving, but also just to not be tempted to overspend. The only other purchased yarn this weekend was some yummy yarn from Ray. I already loved his yarn just from seeing it on his website, and in person it was incredible!! I snagged a merino lace weight, which, thanks to Barbara's encouragement, will be my first attempt at a lace shawl in the Forest Canopy pattern. I also bought a skein of Ray's Southern Purls in the Happy 1 colorway, don't know what that will be...yet!
Saturday was a picture-perfect New England day, and the afternoon found most everyone outdoors. There was a group who went over to Sadia and Anns for a dyeing party and they made some fine looking yarn, which *almost* made me regret not participating. I don't know...there is something about dyeing that I just don't find appealing...I perceive it to be such a messy process, and with all the beautiful handspun, hand dyed, hand painted yarn available to purchase, I don't have alot of incentive to try. Same with spinning. I'd rather use my somewhat limited time to knit and leave the spinning to...well, yeah, the spinners! (I confess that I came very close to purchasing some alpaca roving). I believe in this picture that Sarah and Fudge are discussing cruising tactics. I'm just sayin', it's possible the subject came up once or twice.
Saturday night was the potluck and it was a feast! Ann had suggested we have a burrito bar and it worked out great. Many thanks to Ann for all the cooking she did for us. It was a memorable dinner for me as I found myself surrounded by women holding forkfuls of my homemade mac and cheese, asking for my hand in marriage. Now that I know that my mac and cheese has the power to turn otherwise sane women to mush, I will be making it more often :o) The evening was over much too soon, and before I knew it I was loading up my car and heading home on Sunday.
Not before a trip to Bennington Pottery though, where this moose was there to greet us. For those who don't know me that well, I have a thing for bears...they are my totem animal, or power animal. I found the most amazing bowl, and it was marked down 50%, I couldn't say no. I brought my find up to the cashier. A woman and her husband asked me what I was going to use the bowl for...without even thinking, I said "fill it with yarn". They moved away, not knowing how to respond and were seen leaving the store after that...
The ride home was more beautiful weather, and I was looking forward to picking up the boy at camp. I swear I dropped off a white dog on Friday, but they gave me back a gray, gritty, panting thing instead. As soon as he saw his towel and shampoo come out, he crawled under the nearest piece of furniture. I decided since Rusty wasn't going to have a bath that I would relax.
And, since it was Sunday, and I remembered what Unka Lou said about sunday martini's, I found an inch or so of vodka and toasted him, and everyone - what a great time we had and I hope those who couldn't make it this time will be there next time.