Wednesday, March 11, 2009

And It Only Took Me 31 Years

Marc was at a conference in Seattle last week. A nice irony when one considers the near non-stop rain we'd been cursing hunched under enjoying here in the Windy City. ( It was rain. That meant it was above freezing. Count your blessings.) Whenever he travels, he picks up something for us poor benighted types who were left at home. It's usually t-shirts for the kids. Often a coffee cup for me, although he has been known to deviate from the program - like the year he brought back the embroidered shawl from Olvera Street, but that's another story.

On one of his daily check-ins he commented that he found only one t-shirt vendor who had Pacific Northwest designs, and had had no luck finding a replacement for the Orca design necktie he had gotten for some long-distant Father's Day (must have been the year we bought him ties from all the museums where we had memberships). Hoping to stave off another souvenir cup, I casually mentioned yarn.

"You know, I saw a yarn store on my run, not far from the hotel and I almost went in." Being a smart woman, I nearly jumped through the phone lines encouraged this train of thought. I even went so far as to Google yarn stores in Seattle. By the way, do you people know about KnitMap? What a great invention. Sure enough, there at Second and Bell I found So Much Yarn - a clear and karmic sign. At the question of how much yarn, I knew right off to respond, "Sweater quantities. The staff will know."

(Him)"You'd really knit a cardigan for me?"
(Me) "Um. Well. Sure."

He went off to scout. It occurred to e that the yarn requirements for a man's cardigan might be a little different than a child's pullover. A quick check through Ann Budd's A Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns and Martin Storey's Knitting For Him confirmed the suspicion.

He confirmed the existence and status of the yarns store (moving, not going out of business). I told him how much yarn.It got a little sticky.

(Him) Silence. "That's a lot of yarn."
(Me) "Yes it is."
(Him) "It wouldn't fit. How would I get it home? Where would I put it? I'd have to buy a suitcase. Do you think they'd let me have a box?"

I could tell I was losing him.

(Me) "What if you just see if there's anything there you like? You could pick up a couple of skeins for me to play with."
(Him) "That could work."

I was quite excited when he handed this over. It obviously wasn't a coffee cup.

Behold my souvenir.

I admit, I was a bit puzzled. The skein is Cascade Sierra, a 50/50 cotton/wool blend. The ball is Samoa, a 50/50 cotton and acrylic.

(Me) "You want a cotton sweater?"
(Him) "Well, no. Wool would probably be better. I just bought them for the color."

The irony of all this?

I'm already knitting him a navy blue wool sweater.

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