I taught in DC yesterday at the Destination Knits Retreat and it was a wonderful experience! Laurie Gonyea did a fabulous job of putting together an instructional and very fun day for a group of a dozen knitters. The massages were amazing (even if mine was a little short because I arrived to that portion of the day late!)
The students ranged across a variety of skill levels, but everyone jumped in and we all grew from the experience! Most gratifying were the brand new knitter who had only learned to knit a few minutes before the class (and learned to purl IN the class) but still managed a few cable twists. She has a lot to keep her mind and hands busy for the next few weeks!
Another student was a left handed knitter, and I was able to help her understand the leading and trailing edge of her stitch, so now she will be able to make untwisted stockinette stitch if she wants (and still knit the way she feels comfortable, moving her stitches from her right hand needle to her left hand needle) Knitting “backwards” – or working in the opposite direction than you’re used to – is an exceptional skill to develop, especially when working back and forth over a small area like entrelac or for a narrow belt.
Aside from the basic combination, we also covered some increasing and decreasing (it seemed something the class really wanted to know) and cabling without at cable needle – which is so much fun it’s like a party trick – and the i-bobble. A nice bag of tricks to send the folks home with!
After class, though, I became very ill. My nose was running like Roger Bannister and I felt head-achy and light-headed. I went to the hotel and slept for a few hours, then returned to the retreat to say goodbye to a few women and returned again to the hotel. At that point my cold (flu?) was full blown and I have to say my biggest worry is that along with knitting technique I may have passed along an unhealthy dose of germs to my students!
All night I was up, it was impossible to sleep (what I wouldn’t have given for some NyQuil) and at 3:00 in the morning -which was really 2:00 because the clocks fell back last night – I called Knit Happens in Alexandria, VA and left a message that I was just too sick to teach today.
Cancelling a teaching engagement is heartbreaking, and I can’t remember the last time I did it. But aside from my own ills, and a sore throat to boot, I just can’t pass along this nastiness to two other groups of women with a clear conscious.
I called a few more times – always getting the machine – but finally reached at employee a few minutes before the class was scheduled to begin. To anyone who missed this class, I am VERY sorry – you wouldn’t have wanted to be around me today, anyway! Know that if you were disappointed, my own disappointment was very great, too! I get so much from teaching (not only monetarily) and it helps me with my own creative process to help folks along with their knit technique.
The drive home was – exhausting. I made many stops, just about every time I passed a rest stop I got a cup of tea or just stopped to walk around for a few minutes because I felt so dead tired. Several times I had a passing feeling that, “You know, I may have been able to stay and teach…” but then I’d be overwhelmed with a wave of tiredness and my throat would ache and I’d realize again that my own bed was the only place for me.
I got home around noon and crashed. It’s 5:00 – I’m up but Gerry and the kids are gone (what an odd feeling…) I think he woke me up a few minutes ago to tell me they were going shopping. I’m in that other-world ear-ringing state right now so I’ll have some more tea, call him on his cell phone and head back to bed.
Best thing about the day? When I got home and crawled into bed within minutes Gigi the cat and Atticus the dog were curled up with me and Gerry was rubbing my back.
Best thing about the weekend? Aside from the teaching and the students, it was meeting an NPR celeb – I’m such an NPR dweeb – I got to meet the white house correspondent the day that Scooter Libby was indicted. Very cool. And I drove past where Susan Stamberg lives!