Saturday, September 15, 2012

Monkey Mind

Usually monkey mind is something I suffer from in the middle of the night when I‘ve been mentally stimulated too close to bedtime.  Right now it is a beautiful late summer Saturday morning, and I’m finding it hard to zero in on a subject for this post. My first idea was to write about the end of the summer and how it affects our Tuesday open knit group. I’ve been going long enough now to see the pattern of the comings and goings of my knitting friends. The population of Door County ebbs and flows with the seasons. It is a vacation spot for many escaping big cities like Chicago, for snow birds who spend their winters in Florida, and teachers enjoying their summer hiatus. There are a few of us who live nearby. I’ve become one of the regulars, missing a rare “Holy Tuesday,” like when I attend a week up at Siever’s doing batik.

A detail from one of my batik dish towels made at Siever's

Wow, that led right to another subject I was pondering. I’ve had the feeling lately that something has been missing from my summer routine. And summer is over. Batik, Seiver’s. That’s it! I didn’t go this summer. I didn’t attend a workshop at U of Minnesota’s Split Rock Arts Program either. But I understand that program no longer exists. For the last 10 years I’ve been enjoying these two venues, learning and practicing fiber arts with wonderful teachers, and meeting many talented and friendly student artists. It has been great reuniting with batik artists year after year, hearing what has happened in their lives during the intervening months. My daughter-in-law has been among them. We’ve shared accommodations, delicious meals at Washington Island restaurants, class camaraderie, and dye pots. What a Joy! That’s what I missed this summer.

My batik inspired by a photo of a surveyor's mark .

While I miss my annual batik friends, I get to be with my knitting friends every week. What an amazing gift it is to belong to such a group. We share so much. It’s not just the help we give each other with knitting problems, that binds us. That kind of help you can get online. The real sharing is what is happening in our lives. And, yes, what one says at knitting stays at knitting. So I won’t be spilling any beans here. One thing I find very encouraging is that even the most experienced knitters still have occasion to “tink.” I like the fact that there are no yarn snobs, or knitters vs. crocheters. The “open” in open knitting is just that. We are a group that takes pleasure in the efforts of everyone, hats to socks, scarves to prayers shawls, pot holders to afghans, subtle to flamboyant. There are those who do gorgeous projects in their comfort zones and those who relish the delight of success arising from trial and error. It’s all good. AND WE LAUGH!
If you belong to a knitting group, you know what I’m talkin’about. If not, GET THEE TO A GROUP!