It’s past time to properly introduce the sock that’s been lurking shyly around the edges of the last few weeks’ posts:
Hello, Sock #1.
We’d been trading phone messages for about a week, one of my knitting friends and I: the upcoming weekend was the parish retreat at Shrinemont, and there had been some talk earlier in the summer of learning how to knit socks. I finally caught Marianne on the phone Friday afternoon, while she was packing their car and about to leave town. The sock plan was on; Marianne read me the supply list, and said she had signed on a third knitter. My crew was set to leave in about an hour: we still needed snacks for the trip, and – isn’t this convenient -- there’s a yarn shop in the same shopping center as the grocery store.
First things first: Yarn. I head to the knitting table at the rear of the store for help with something highly improbable: a quick visit to a yarn shop. Checking the scrap of cereal box I’d written my list on, we pick out two size 2 addi turbos, 24” long, and 475 yards of sock yarn (self striping, for feeling clever) -- and might have set a world record for the shortest stay in a LYS. (I promise I’ll do it right next visit.) Back to the house with the groceries, and we were off.
Between dinner, unpacking, and getting the kids connected with their friends, it’s twilight before Marianne and I get the chance to sit down and get started on my sock. (Hers was already about 4 inches long.) Undaunted, I cast on 60 stitches, start 2x2 ribbing the first 30 stitches, and then the second 30, on the second needle. It’s getting darker and darker out there on the balcony in front of her family’s room; it’s far past bedtime and nearly quiet hour and there are packs of children to track down, capture and bathe. But we are stubborn and determined to knit the join before calling it a night. And so Marianne goes into her room, and comes back out with a headlamp (you know: the lights that strap onto your head when you’re camping, or reading in bed, or spelunking. Good thing her boys hadn’t needed it right then). It’s just enough light to see to connect the circle: the sock is joined and on its way. Wish I had a picture, but, well, it was dark.
By Saturday afternoon, there was a genuine knitting circle going on outside the cabin next door to ours: Marianne’s sock was almost to the heel flap, she was taking Stephanie (sock knitter #3) through her cast on (note to self: much easier in daylight), my sock was growing steadily, and our friend Wendy (who claims not to believe in socks) was working on a ribbon tank.
Sunday morning I spotted Marianne and Stephanie knitting on the front porch of Virginia House. Marianne was reading aloud from my copy of Knitting Rules, Stephanie's (the Yarn Harlot, not our Stephanie) “10 reasons not to knit socks.” OK, fine; but it’s far too late for me.