The Lost Arts

Our church women gathered on Saturday to take classes in “the lost arts”: tie dye, knitting, quilting, ornament making, cooking (raviolis and bread – from scratch!), make up, picture framing, pressed-flower cards.   I took knitting.  We have several experts in our congregation who make everything from blankets to sweaters, baby booties to stylish hats and scarves.  The flyer said bring bulky yarn and large needles.  Kathy, our instructor, talked about “casting”.  I thought of fishing.  We had wonderful printed directions which I didn’t understand.  (I still don’t know how to use the GPS system in my car.)  Kathy and her assistant, Karen, took turns standing behind me until I was able to “cast” stitches onto my (very slippery) needle.  Karen then showed me how to knit; right needle through the loop, bring the yarn around, pull the loop back through and slip the stitch off the needle.  As soon as she turned to help another, I tried my grandmother’s method.  It went faster.  We had three hours, after all, and I was hoping to finish a scarf. 

Fat chance!  My hands kept getting tighter.  So did the loops.  When the time ended, I hadn’t even finished enough to make a pot holder.  I couldn’t even get my needle into the first (tight!) loop to save my life.  I donated my yarn and needles (locked together with purple yarn) on the way out the door. 

Everyone says knitting relaxes tension, but last night, I awakened with aching wrists and fingers. My left wrist felt the same way after I “walked” Sarge (now 100 pounds) down and back up “the big hill”.  Afternoon traffic came early that day.  Sarge seemed convinced cars intended to jump the curb and swallow us whole.  He lowered his head and pulled like an Alaskan sled dog in a blizzard.  I stopped and wouldn’t budge until he came around me and sat.  He’d give me that look:  “Okay! Can we go now?”  He “heeled” for fewer than six feet.  By the time we made it down and back up that, my tongue was hanging out like his.  When we reached home, I wanted to boot him off the area rug and sprawl there myself.

I digress.  My husband tells me I can summarize a thirty minute TV show in two hours.  Back to knitting. 

I don’t think it’s my thing.