Friday, November 13, 2009

It's me...I'm back.

Last week I was in Denver, CO for a conference - a BIG conference. Truthfully, I wasn't delighted to go. I had issues at home that needed to be resolved and managed, and the timing sucked. Well, I'm now glad I went.

The home "issues" while they didn't sort themselves out, at least remained manageable, and I got some "away" time I didn't realize I needed so badly.

The week prior to my trip Denver got FEET of snow. The week I was there the temps were in the high 60s and low 70s without a flake in sight. To say it was bizarre, doesn't quite describe it.

The conference was in the Colorado Conference Center. The upper level is an enormous atrium with stunning views of the Rockies--when they were not fog shrouded.

Outside the Convention Center the designers added a bit of whimsey. See the big BLUE bear peering in the windows?

Seems perfect for Denver. The Denverites I met were all very nice, and friendly! Even, are you sitting down?, the bus drivers. (I'm from Pittsburgh, and the natives are wonderful friendly there, UNLESS they are bus drivers. At least that's my experience....Maybe it has to do with passengers like me who leave their clog in the middle of the street while boarding a bus.....Hummmmm.)

On Wednesday night, I took a bus to The Lamb Shoppe. See this is how I know about bus drivers. I got some info from the hotel concierge about where to actually get a bus. Not only did this gentleman give me information, he walked outside the hotel with me to point me in the correct direction! When I got on the bus, it was dark (Standard Time), and I had no idea where I needed to get off, other than between Madison and Maple. I told the bus driver that I needed to get off at that stop (I knew the bus stop was near the shop because I called them), and would he alert me? He said "Sure!". Well, after about 15 minutes I got antsy, and we were in a VERY residential neighborhood, so I stood up to get a better look. He saw me and said, don't worry, it's another two stops away. He then told me where and when to get the bus back to downtown. When I told him I was going to a yarn store he said, "that's a first"..."it's usually BEAD stores!"

Anyway, another blogger/knitter once described the indecision of a knitter as "monkey mind". Well, I'm the original monkey. It used to happen in bead stores, I'd have a "plan" of sorts....("I'm going to buy Delicas.") Then as soon as I'm surrounded by gorgeous beads, well, forget it. I can't even remember I had a plan to begin with. That's exactly what happened in the Lamb Shoppe. The walls were just loaded with gorgeous yarns....seriously! Yarns that I've only read about. And here I was....with no room in my carry-on. In addition, there was a delightfully rowdy stitch and bitch group meeting up front. A table learning how to crochet, and another table of beginning knitters designing their own mittens...... Action packed doesn't quite describe it. For someone who, for the most part, is a solitary knitter, this was like an oasis.

So I wandered around for about 30 minutes, I bought some cotton sock yarn for my cotton loving mother, some Malabrigo, and a Skacel Zauerbal sock yarn, and herein lies a story.

A colleague of mine, who will soon be retiring (snif), recently took an extended vacation. She had seen a moebius shawl at one of our local arts festivals and was immediately charmed by the concept. In my "go big, or go home" approach to most things I said. I can show you how to knit a moebius. She is barely a beginning knitter by the way..... She bought needles, lovely Lamb's Pride Lanaloft, and I helped her cast on.... At her vacation destination, her knitting attracted the attention of other knitters one of whom introduced her to a skein of Zauerbal. Yet again, she was charmed and tried to describe it to me when she got back. I had never seen the yarn. However, lo and behold, there was Zauerbal, right on the Lamb Shoppe shelf! So I bought one for her as a souvenir from Denver.

Anyway, here is a [bad] photo, of the Malabrigo worsted (Ginger Carrot--has it dawned on anyone yet that I buy yarns because I like the color names?), and the Zauerbal.

I am using the Malabrigo to knit another pair of Fetching mitts. This time for me. They will "match" nothing...but I don't care. Nyah, nyah. I knit an entire pair of mitts while I was in Denver. They were that fast...and travel makes for lots of knitting time. (Not necessarily in the air, however.)

These are for my sister this is a new type of Araucania yarn. Loved it!!

I will definitely make the palms deeper (longer?) for me though.

There's more, but it's late here, and I do want to go home eventually.........

When I began this post it was Veterans Day, and I was going to tell everyone to kiss an available service person to thank them. Even though it isn't Veterans Day, I'm thinking this might be a good idea anyway.


Mag said...

That's the way it is with a western storm. Freezing for a day, a pile of snow and the next week, shorts and a tank top. ;-)

I loved your yarn shop visit vicariously. Peeps are extraordinarily nice in Colorado. It must be the air.

Bezzie said...

Yes, CO is the only place I've lived where that "wait 15 minutes and the weather will change" saying *actually* true.
I'm glad I'm not the only one a sucker for a cool yarn color name!

kemtee said...

Ah… ours is not the only delightfully rowdy s-n-b group, then? That's good to know.

I like the bear.

I may have to go and visit my sister-in-law, and make her take me to this Lamb Shoppe. Hmm.

And who says mitts have to match something?