I went to Rhinebeck yesterday - holy cow! I've read about a bazillion blog raves about how awesome it is, but I was spooked by thinking it would be just a super-gigantical yarn shop that would sneakily devour the entire contents of my wallet, leaving me broke but unsatisfied. Then Knithound Lisa told me at our Stitch 'n Bitch how much more it is than that. There's all kinds of sheepy goodness, and also carnival rides and delicious food and fiber-y contests and sheep judging and sheepdog competitions and, and, and, and, and... I had to leave by 2 to return my friends' car, and the four hours I had there were barely enough to cover most of the ground, let alone to go to the book signings or classes or contests or the Ravelry party to follow.
I did get to watch some of the sheepdog competition. Here's a youtube of border collies - towards the end it shows what sheepdog trials look like. It was weirdly fascinating and not a little bit funny to watch in real life. The dog tries to herd the sheep through a variety of gates and chutes and the sheep rebel by staying put, then suddenly bustle briskly about as if they just remembered where it is they were going.
Yes, I know -- right after my two-second appearance on Fox News, dog videos is probably the second least likely thing you were expecting to find here.
And now here's some fiberporn.
Before Rhinebeck I used to get annoyed by knit-bloggers showing off their stashes - I love to see people's accomplishments and works in progress, but showing off the yarn that will turn into something some-day -- possibly years from now, or never -- always rubbed me the wrong way. And it always drove me batty when people waxed rhapsodic about "Fiber" - you know, like "Oh, how I long to go dancing among the beautiful sheepy or alpacalicious strands and slubs and puffs, and to press skein after skein to my cheek to inspect their staple, accepting or rejecting their advances toward my tote bag like prospects to my dance card. I could just curl up in a yarny coccoon and sleep forever, dreaming the most delicious fibery dreams." It always rubbed me the wrong way - like an artist bragging about her oil sticks instead of her paintings. But then, Van Gogh did try to eat his paint.
About one o'clock yesterday I found myself in the Decadent Fibers booth, talking to a fellow t/Raveler whose name I forget while we both fondled the same three jumbo hanks of the most gorgeous orange yarn. I'd told myself I didn't need any more wool than was already in my bag, and had been seeking out some raw silk for a project I have in mind chiefly by smell -- you know that strong funky silk smell? -- the aisles and aisles of yarn were starting to mix together into one big blur, and my eyes were tired from taking it all in. Then I saw this incredible orange out of the corner of my eye. The light hit it just so, like the first tree to go full orange in the fall. I had to know all about this! Fellow t/Raveler and I talked as we both fondled the yarn somewhat adoringly, mesmerised, falling in love with it: I want to make you mine. It was a weirdly shared sensual experience. We ended by collapsing into a huge bout of the giggles. The finally stopping until you look at the other person and it starts all over again giggles.
And I want to share that gleeful moment with you too, O blogosphere. I know the crappy pictures my Kodak Easy-share takes will never do it justice. But maybe, if you've ever had a similar experience, I can set off the mirror neurons in your brain and give you that warm, fuzzy you know, fiber-y feeling.
And some yarn I'm even more excited about: Four Directions Colors from the Earth, 85% wool, 15% Mohair,
P.S. I've been reading Erica Jong - does it show?