June 1st, 2016 Note: This past entry was originally posted as “Words Fail Me” on the “On the Road to STITCHES” blog for the Knitting Universe. It is a continuation that describes one of my visits to my daughter’s godparents’ home.
As before, when we turned the car onto the winding path leading to Anna’s place, my breath was taken away by the beautiful simplicity. The gravel drive seemed steep at times, and the rustic feel is peaceful. By now the grapevines were bare of their fruit, and the tubbed trees were brought into the greenhouse for the winter. But yet I still can visualize my first impression as I stepped from the main house to walk the grounds.
We were heartily greeted by everyone, including Samson and Delilah, the two dogs that were adopted from a nearby shelter. After being embraced by Anna, we caught each other up on what has been happening in our lives. As I pulled out the copy of K100 that I had brought for her, Anna proposed that we take advantage of the beautiful afternoon with a stroll. In hearing how the weather felt a bit cool outside, she turned to get a sweater to wear. While doing so, Anna handed me a glimpse of her latest finished object. It was a cardigan that closed with a single large button. Eyes beaming, she said that the button was from an artisan who was vending at Cat Bordhi’s retreat which Anna taught at last month. The sweater’s workmanship took my breath away. Not just because of the detailed embroidery throughout it, but because the no-seamed construction was ingenious. (Later during the walk, Anna told me about the custom yarns she used to knit up the sweater and its details. I just hope I get to try out the pattern if she ever writes it!)
As we walked towards the Terry family cemetery that was akin to the property, Anna and I discussed how dynamic Cat Bordhi is, and how she can energize anyone. We chatted about the latest K100 issue being online and the upcoming STITCHES events — particularly how she is kicking off Opening Day at STITCHES South in Atlanta. (She had hinted at what her speech topic would be about, but of course I cannot share those details with you. Sorry!) We fell into the topic of Ravelry, and we both agreed that Jessica and Casey’s vision of keeping it an impartial place for crafters is why it appeals to so many folks. As a seasoned veteran in our industry, Anna views Ravelry as a wonderful connection between knitters that bridges them in a way that did not exist decades ago. “Ravelry lets knitters become public in a way that was never done before. Instead of being cut off from the world, there is a universal feeling of kinship. Knitters now know they can come out and not have to be alone at home.”
Back at the main house’s greenhouse area, we were treated to a recital based upon Hafez poetry. The lyrics were mystical; the choral tunes were fluted. We discussed them over wine and a smorgasbord of smoked oysters, cheese, crackers, and Mediterranean chips. I quietly pulled out the signed copy of Cookie A.’s new “knit. sock. love.” book that I brought for Anna to have. Not knowing that I was giving it to her, Anna remarked on how different Cat and Cookie were as designers, yet both were inspiring knitters to make socks. As she handed the book back to me, I smiled and said it was hers. You should have seen the twinkle in her eyes! 🙂
As the evening drew to a close with the setting sun, the dogs gently (okay, not so much) reminded us that it was time for dinner. Since I will be house-sitting in January, it made sense that I see how to take care of them. Happily fed at last, the dogs let everyone be. By then the stars had come out, and we realized how late it was.
Saying our good-nights, we exchanged hugs and agreed to see each other next month. En route to the car, I remarked to David about the basil that had been previously growing and that it was a shame it was already gone for the season. He pointed out the hidden shrubs in the greenhouse that there was plenty still. “Would you like some to go?” Before we knew it, he handed us each a ripened fig wrapped in some of the stronger basil. Taking a bite of my basil-wrapped fig, I smiled at the burst of flavor. Now that is how to end the night — with an unexpected combination that melds beautifully. I think it perfectly describes my friendship with Anna, and I cherish it immensely.
Bunny hugs for now,