Friday, May 11, 2007

It came...

I waited all week for the mail; living in the country is marvelous but having to wait twice as long for packages can be killer. Having placed the order on Sunday, I knew it would be a long time coming, but I didn't care. I was too sick to go to the yarn store at that point, and all I wanted was a fix.

Finally, though, as I sat on the couch today, right after my last post, working on a sock, the doorbell rang. I rushed over, soothed Darcy (the pup), and took the package, a slim brown envelope. I knew what it had to be.

Lace Style, edited by Pam Allen and Ann Budd, containing the pattern for my Lacy tank top, the Essential Tank.

I had purchased the yarn on Wednesday, denim-colored Misti Alpaca lace weight. The pattern called for the yarn to be doubled, so I bought seven skeins. They waited on the top of the stash...

But no longer. I cast on this afternoon, right as Dad pulled into the driveway following a week long trip to Colorado where he hiked in the mountains and attended his sister's graduation ceremony.

I was lucky enough to get gauge right away--I cast on with a size seven needle instead of a size six, my tension is so tight that I always start with one size larger and then move up or down if needed.

Sorry the pictures are blurred, I did the best I could with my hopeless camera...

Unfortunately, the needles I have in a size seven are as dull as all get out--inadvisable with a fine yarn and a lace pattern, especially with my tension. I've fallen in love with Addi Lace needles, so I am dragging the corpse to Warsaw tomorrow to visit The Shuttle Shop [This isn't their page--they aren't online, but it has a good description of what the shop has and other LYS in Indiana, which is great to have], where I hope Kathy can hook me up with a pair.

I bought a size four pair when Addi first released these beautiful implements, and I fell right in love with them. They are sharp enough and lack the slippery coating that would cause dropped stitches when working with a lace weight yarn. Also, and I don't know if anyone else has noticed this, they have a distinctive smell of pennies.

This makes me think of Dad.

As a child, Dad worked at CMI, Wabash Cast Aluminum. Every day, when he came home from work, smelling of molten steel and covered in bits of tiny metal that gleamed in his hair and rained down onto the carpet as he pulled off his work boots, he would empty out his pockets of his wallet, his pocketknife, and his change before going into the basement for his shower. He put these items into his Work Basket, on the top of the refrigerator. The basket held bills, coins, and the bullet that ricochet up and hit Dad in the bum when he went hunting and had a friend that forgot gun safety.

When the basket became too heavy, Dad would pull it down and thump it onto the dining room table after dinner. Paul and I would then crawl up onto the dining room chairs and kneel on them, leaning over the table, and seperate out all the pennies from the nickels, dimes, and quarters. Then we would pour the silver into the basket again along with the bullet and the envelopes. Paul and I could keep the pennies; we would count them and put them in careful piles of ten each before dividing them evenly between our two piggie banks.

The smell of Addi Lace needles reminds me of all that.

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