"There will be little rubs and disappointments everywhere, and we are all apt to expect too much; but then, if one scheme of happiness fails, human nature turns to another; if the first calculation is wrong, we make a second better: we find comfort somewhere . . . "
- Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
Yea, I kinda blocked this part of the process out of my mind. That's some serious weaving staring back at me.
I started working on these ends a few nights ago while a friend was over to visit. I pulled out my minty-green Chibi and set to work. Said friend kept shooting odd looks my way and I finally realized that his furtive glances were directed at poor, innocent (yet mildly suggestive ~ if you have a dirty-boy mind, and what boy-minds aren't dirty?) Chibi.
My friend didn't really believe me when I explained the actual lackluster purpose of my little Chibi. And then when I opened it and withdrew the needles to demonstrate, he jumped to his feet, looking decidedly uncomfortable, hastily said his good-bys and before I knew it he was out the door.
Well, obviously, he doesn't knit.
And he apparently has a rather more vicarious opinion of me than I realized.
Then again, I did attend a class at Babeland last weekend with 15 other giggling girls, after all.
But a 2 1/2 inch Chibi? Yea, I don't think so.
Okay, far too much information there.
Right, moving on.
WLLC is looking spiffy all spruced up with blue embroidery (it just cried out for that bit of personalization and I was bored sitting here in front of the computer anyway and experimented with under-the-desk yarn manipulation which really isn't as easy as it might sound and please don't laugh at my wonky six ~ the baby is a month old and can't even focus his eyes yet, he'll never notice and I'm not doing it over).
A little more weaving, some blocking and tweaking and I think this log cabin will find it's way to Iowa in no time.
I am prepared to cast on for Tiny Isadora's Log Cabin any minute now.
But I got distracted.
I'm pretty easy to distract these days. Especially if I find myself in the middle of School Products or some other delicious and compelling yarn bodega. I look around and wonder momentarily how I came to be surrounded by lush woolly happiness and then all thoughts of projects-on-the-needles or overwhelmingly large existing stash or I have no money fly right out the window and I am engulfed in a haze of fiber euphoria and my credit card swoops into the hands of any shopkeeper in sight.
So, yea, I bought this yarn. Surprise.
Any guesses as to what absolutely random project I cast on for last night?
I've found something good about my new office space, after all. Something wonderful in fact. Something exciting and completely unexpected.
Sometime between unpacking pencils and dodging unforgivable curses I set out in search of a recycling bin and instead stumbled across an obscure door tucked in a hidden corner behind a pile of debris. This door looked nothing like the other stark white door on our floor. It glowed a bit from underneath and sported a dented metal frame.
Not one to ignore the beckon of adventure, I stumbled through the pile of discarded office paraphernalia and crept through the door (ever in fear I'd hear the screach of an alarm or the intensification of clatter from the Evil Empty Corner Office), propping it open behind me with a tattered wastebasket (because I've read enough science fiction to know that you can never predict what you might find behind mysterious doors and a quick course of retreat is always prudent.)
I did not find Narnia. There were no White Witches across the threshold (which is fine by me since we have enough of those creepy type folk inside anyway), no Turkish Delight or Every Flavor Beans; nothing remotely magical or otherworldly behind my little door, in fact. But I did find myself outside, all in the open, right here on the 7th Floor in Midtown. Daylight and green shrubbery surrounded me (murky daylight, but daylight nonetheless) and I breathed un-re-circulated-and-conditioned city air. The day was as humid and drizzly as when I walked to work.
There wasn't a soul in sight out there above the city (unless you peek over the hedge and count the hundreds shuffling along the sidewalk down below and I don't want to count them because they didn't even know I was up there so why acknowledge them at all?)
I explored. The terrace circles our entire floor. Those hotsey-totsey executives appear to all have a view of this fabulous terrace where it passes their window offices, so I won't be streaking naked around the building or anything. But remember, half of our floor is under construction. That means empty! If I remain on my side of the line, if you will, then no one will ever know I'm out there. Naked or not. Although I will in fact be keeping my clothes on, but I'm just saying!
So now I possess my very own secret knitting (and sunbathing!) outdoor nook (i.e. escape hatch!) Sure, the executives know about it, if they ever bother to look out the window between conference calls (which I have begun to doubt is possible ~ in fact, I have a new theory that there really is only one long conference call that just goes on and on all day and whenever these guys aren't actively in a meeting, they are required to just call in and start chattering randomly to exercise their boring jargon in order to maintain statue. Sure, I have real conference calls several days a week, but we actually produce results. Our calls are productive. You can't expect me to believe that these back to back to back calls that produce no results are anything other than farce and trickery, can you? I'd sooner believe they are discussing House Elf Etiquette or fiber theory. That's why they make the big bucks, right?)
And I would bet you every Starbucks I've ever drank that nary a one will ever venture through my door and onto my terrace. In fact, I'll even bet you this box containing 12 skeins of Elann.com pink cotton that just arrived (yeah, what do you think I'm knitting from it?) that none of them have even a clue about my secret hidden door. They aren't like that, you see. Who takes the time to explore when there are droll, useless meetings to attend for hours on end?
I feel even more alone here. I haven't seen another person on my floor all day. The mail guy hasn't even bothered to peek. And I never did find a recycling bin.
But I am beginning to tune out the odd clicking from the Corner Office. I even discovered an alternate route to the pantry so I won't have to frantically rush past the freaky sounds with my eyes squeezed shut.
I have the time and the privacy to blog or read blogs. I can't really knit, of course (Y-K-W!)
But I have a secret now, and a private escape. WLLC and I strolled around outside in the mist for a bit and I worked on his little border (...shhh...don't tell!)
On a lighter note ('cause things are getting a little too intense around here these days!) welcome to the wonderful world of Hair Air Guitar.
If you haven't gone, you should. If you don't know what I'm even talking about, you definitely need some Air in your life so do some research, make a spreadsheet and for pete's sake buy your tickets. These things sell out quick (believe it or not!) so get a move on, word is spreading fast. If you aren't there, you've got no air!
Veronique, Liisa and I (not to be confused with Veronique's soon-to-be roommate Lisa, who is a different person altogether and I haven't a clue if she's seen air guitar or not, but since she will be living with Veronique, might be corruptible) along with (a somewhat intoxicated) Ben and 30 (yes thirty) of his co-workers enjoyed the US Championship rounds of air guitar this past week.
I really am at a loss to even describe to you this event. Photos may have to suffice.
Mr. Billy Ocean (in the first and several other photos over there) proved to be the crowd favorite and managed the first successful stage dive of the evening, but alas, Hot Legs Houlihan (getting air on some shoulders) took the prize.
Ocean may not have won, but the boy sure has Air.
Next I may be reporting on what damage the opening band, Satanicide (yes, you read that right) did to my hearing and my personal well-being. It could be another one of those intense posts.
While Veronique and Lisa experience the fun and delight of packing up and moving their homes, I am in the throes of a slightly less taxing misery, that of moving my office.
It's only 4 floors up, but miles and miles of nuisance, delving into all those cubbies and niches I'd filled forgotten about years ago.
I found tons I dared not dump for fear of audit. And even though I had "packers" I still had to tackle endless daunting drawers of "personal" stuff. (I'm just not okay with a gaggle of male porters handling my tampons and toothpaste, thanks.)
What is all this crap we accumulate in our offices? Okay, the yarn hoard is obvious (all 3 drawers of it) ~ everything I don't want to admit that I own yet and fear that Ben might surreptitiously discover if the fluffy fiber isn't sufficiently cloaked by droll financials and lively pie charts.
Then there are the tchotch-ckas that coworkers toss at you to placate their own guilt when they return, sun-kissed and happy, from their 3 week vacations you all know you'll never take.
And the Food Repository grows consistently over the years, doesn't it? I possess enough food to sustain the building for at least 72 hours during the next blackout. I found unbelievably stocked shelves where the piles of microwave, single serve popcorn, collections of candy bars and rows tuna cans hide, futilely pretending that one day I'll actually eat them instead of running out to grab something (anything) else.
I guess these slivers of un-work propel us along to do what we have to get done in a day.
I'd never, ever take any of it home, but can't quite bear to toss this crap either.
Now I'm sitting here, practically alone, surrounded by tchotch-skas and files and boxes I can't seem to unpack, on a dismally quiet floor mostly devoid of humans. Occasionally I glimpse construction workers lugging bits of wall around somewhere past the piles of broken desks and litter of collapsed filing cabinets.
I am not joking. I have moved to a wasteland.
I sometimes hear mysterious clicking emanating from a dark corner office and I'm really not sure what it is. Maybe I don't want to know. Maybe it shall forever remain the Secret Sound of the Seventh Floor.
At least I have 2 2/3 pounds of cotton to caress. And a little emerald cloud of kidsilk haze.
This is the floor where people come to die. Or perhaps disappear into the system?
Or maybe where careers come to die...
Y-K-W lives here too, of course. There's no escaping that, especially in this soul-less void.
It's actually those moments, you know. Not just the happening.
You know what I'm talking about. The moments where the world freezes around you for the instant. Bees quiet their buzzing and the clouds cease their endless traipse across the skies. Air turns to molasses then concrete and solidifies the world in the space of a quiet breath.
And the intensity of the moment makes you giddy but scares the devil out of you all at the same time and you know that there's something mysteriously special about it, about something.
In these instants we find the moments we never, ever forget.
And these are the moments that we visit again and again over the years. Or maybe they find us. It's the flashes of tranquility that we harbor for those times we're sitting in offices watching the minute hand drone interminably along, or the solace we seek while killing time on the subway when we forgot our books and knitting and grapple for some recourse from unwanted eye contact with underground strangers.
These simple, sacred moments come to us in the quiet times.
And it is these particular captured moments we furiously cling to in the shadow times as well. That is when they are most important.
We desperately grasp at that particular second of bliss, the One Moment we remember when everything was Right.
When the money is tight or the friend is sick or life goes utterly wrong and brings us crashing into a well of tears, we rummage for those singular moments that we had once ~ they happened. Life was good. We seize these moments from out of time and place, forever locked in secret corners of our troubled minds.
It takes the happening, though, to make the moments. Like the one above, captured so eloquently by Amanda at Sheen Falls Lodge in Kenmare. It was nothing particularly special really, when you skim at the surface. Just a moment, but a suffused moment of happiness on a warm green hill in Ireland, tummy full of Guinness, jet lag creeping in, surrounded by friends (who apparently festooned my hair with flowers while I lounged) and faced with the prospect of adventure. A very simple moment, really.
But these moments lock themselves into your soul, where we can somehow remember ourselves from outside our bodies as well as we remember what our eyes glimpsed during that second.
They are crazy, magical things, these little moments of ours. They happen then are gone on the wing of a dragonfly.
And there's a moment, in the the photo above and left, as Ben and I clutch arms against the driving wind and the beautiful, deadly drop inches from our toes. Locked together and caught in time in one of the most remotely, desolately stunning places on earth. Just for a moment. But perfect.
And when that inside, special moment is caught on the camera of an alert bystander...bliss.
And it's the moments with friends and loved ones that certainly hold the deepest and most sacred corners. We keep these safe, treasured, knowing how fleeting and precious each moment may be.
In a perfect word, each day would bring us a fresh new moment. But as it is, most of us strive to wheedle out a single cherished moment when we can from the crap and monotony that drive the day to day.
But is it enough? Do we have the moments to last us?
I worry and I wonder. And I take the vacations and find the friends and knit the blankets and search for the moments that matter in my life.
For me, the problem with vacations (not that I'm complaining about vacations at all, thankyouverymuch) is that so much Happens. Good Stuff. Sheep-y Stuff and Stuff that drives on the wrong side of the road at 140 klms per hour and even Slimey Fishy Stuff.
And it's great that all the Stuff is Happening. That's the point of the vacation to begin with, right?
But by the time all the Happening Stuff is over and done, the Happening of the Stuff is so overwhelming I haven't a clue where to begin to write about It.
I'm over Stuffed.
That's why OSOH remained silent this week. Digesting, if you will.
I knit while digesting, it appears. If you visited the Point on Friday or happened by the Renegade Craft Fair on Saturday you witnessed my furious Log Cabin Knitting. I can't persuade recent photos from my camera right now, but you'll find here an older Ireland shot of Wee Luke's Log Cabin. On Ben's head. While he plays chess and Amanda looks on incredulously.
There was Guinness involved. Possibly in excess.
And poor Ben appears to need a haircut.
I've progressed much further on the WLLC, really I have. I began this as we boarded the flight to Shannon. It's of Elann Sonata. Three blues (Angel, Tapestry and French Navy) and a white. Of course, the pattern originates from Mason Dixon. You do own Mason Dixon, right?
I've another Log Cabin anxiously vying for my attention. Little Isadora grew impatient and cheated me of my month of knitting time, arriving here in New York while I was otherwise occupied in Ireland. Luckily, I anticipated her hastiness and ordered bundles of pink yarn that are currently languishing in the living room, crossing their cotton-y plys in hopes that I'll BO soon.
My other projects are on hold right now while I struggle through the Blanket Brigade. I must say at least that the Log Cabins are relatively quick and easy, but remain somewhat interesting with the color changes. I knit all through Cars yesterday without any problems at all and barely a glance at my stitches. But cotton? Not so smooth on the fingers.