Time Out & Time In

I’m running away today – I packed my two little bags and I got as far as the local Caribou Coffee (which was, quite honestly, my destination…)

I’ve settled in, a cup of tea, a scone – and later a frosty chocolate drink – and 3 hours later I’m still here, getting more work done in the air conditioning than I’ve achieved in hours in our steamy, humid home. Thank heaven the folks are nice about me hanging around. I lend local color (my current project is intarsia)

It’s hot here – it’s hot everywhere. It’s July 7th – day of the Live Earth Concert – and anyone who says the climate hasn’t altered in the past century (most dramatically in the last decade) is a fool.

There, I’ve said it. Don’t be shocked, I also believe in evolution. And gravity (both are theories) I continue to be amazed that out of the nine men running for the Republican nomination, three say they don’t believe in it (evolution, not gravity – although I have my doubts.)

But I digress. I’m obviously enjoying the air conditioning waaaay too much. Perhaps it’s the eccentric guy with red suspenders, a fixture at this Caribou Coffe, who hums to himself and plays with a rubber ducky while he sits in the air conditioning next to me. That ducky may have worn me down. I wonder if he believes in evolution?

He was annoying to me when he first walked in, but I’ve become used to him. Now he’s bouncing a rubber ball and I’m finding it weirdly soothing. A very chic couple came in and scowled at him – I found myself being oddly defensive (I didn’t say anything, but I was fully prepared to scowl back at them if they looked over at me in solidarity.)

So while I’ve been sitting here I’ve completed the VK Intarsia shawl except for crochet chain stitch “fringe” around the edge of the piece (not fringe at all, just an edging) and I’m ready to go home and give it a good steam block. Which seems absolutely redundant given the temperature in our house. The walk back home will probably block the darned thing.

How soon we forget, huh? This was typical summer weather back in NJ, where it’s roughly the same temperature. Looking at accuweather it’s supposed to STAY that way for most of July in NJ, but here after Monday we go back to the 80’s during the day, 50/60’s at night. I wonder if I feel the heat so bad on the hot days because so many of the other days are temperate and my body just can’t get used to it like back in NJ?

At any rate, it’s MUCH nicer to work on a wool shawl with lots of embroidery in a cool place – and now it’s pretty much done and I’m pretty much happy. I’d show you, but then I’d have to kill you. Just kidding. I kid because I love. And it’s hot.

After this I have a few other things to knit up – not killer deadlines, but things coming up that should be finished by the end of this month, next month and mid-Sept. I’ll be teaching in Michigan at Threadbear and Ontario at Feather Your Nest in early August, returning here the day before we go down to Rochester. It will be air conditioned at the Mayo – what a concept, spending August in an air conditioned place! I expect to get a LOT of work finished while I’m there!

I’ve canceled a few teaching engagements in the next few weeks, check my appearances calendar to see what my current teaching dates are.

It’s so hard to try to project the whole future-with-Gerry thing. In the immediate future, I have to either decide if I can fulfill my engagements, or cancel them. Everyone has been SO kind, but even so I still have to earn a living, and the teaching keeps me connected and sane in a way other parts of my life don’t.

For the most parts the shops where I’m teaching have gone out of their way to write and say, “We know things are up in the air now – we’re willing to wait to hear how they turn out, and we hope for the best!” I am SO grateful to these shops.

In just one case a shop wrote informing me that folks weren’t signing up because they thought I’d be canceling my engagement – which I certainly was NOT planning on doing!

My sense was that this particular owner really needed a guarantee, which I couldn’t give, and I felt immense pressure. There’s a chance with ANY engagement that a cancellation is possible – but the chances are greater in the next few months for me.

I know how hard the waiting and not knowing is for me – I can’t expect someone whose income is in part based on me showing up and teaching to bear the same burden of not knowing.

The pressure was strong, so I went ahead and canceled this particular engagement. The pressure was lifted and I felt much better.

And here’s a new lesson. I’d never thought of it before, but now I know exactly what someone in my position needs to hear; We’ll wait for you, we’re here for you, don’t feel pressured to give us guarantees that you can’t make.

The fact that so many yarn shop owners instinctive
ly know to write and say this is a tremendous gift. The kindness of yarn shops is amazing.

Go visit your local shop – it’s probably air conditioned!

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