About Me

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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Jeannie, revisited ever-so-briefly

I fell in love with Jeannie, in the 2007 issue of Knitty. Tried knitting it with the Berroco Denim Silk which I bought to make the Elann Crop Cardi [and frogged when nearly complete] and which is now my wonderful [Almost] Cozy.

It has been haunting me. Cables. Reversible cables. Dropped stitches. Handpainted yarn. So yesterday I wound up the Claudia laceweight that I bought for my birthday last year and grabbed my trusty size 4’s [3.5mm] and cast on.

Make that: tried to cast on. I had forgotten until I was sitting on the train, needles in hand, that Jeannie requires a provisional cast-on. I managed 137+ backward loops, with markers every ten loops, and gave it up.

When I got home again, I looked up the directions for Clapotis and cast it on, instead.

And there were other adventures. Remember that we were under an ice storm advisory? I called the Weather Line at 5:30 yesterday morning, and they said we were opening at 10:00, but to check back at 8:30 before getting on the road. I went out to Lorelai at 8:00 to scrape windows and was still scraping 20 minutes later, when the 8:19 would have been pulling out. So I drove to the T&P station [more about which, in a minute] and parked under the freeway and called again. We were not opening until 11:00, which meant that the next train would get me into BigD at 10:30, and the bus or my own two feet would have me at my desk on time, rather than half an hour late. Sweet!

When I walked out to the car yesterday morning, it looked like somebody had emptied a beanbag chair all over my lawn. The steps were glazed-over; I made it down to the sidewalk all in one piece. Lorelai's doors were almost frozen shut, so that was my first bit of aerobic activity. And then there were the upper-body exercises, where my arms went up and down, the girls went side to side, and the tush danced counterpoint; I may have invented the Ice Storm Mambo!

The street looked like a Martha Stewart wedding cake, the kind with fondant icing. Montgomery was a sheet of white all the way to the freeway; the overpass crossing I-30 was just what I expected, and the ramp of the service road was like a curly-slide at a park. Fort Worth, at least at 8:30 on an icy Wednesday morning, was populated by people who knew how to drive on ice, were keeping it between 15 and 20 mph, and were staying well back from one another.

I had no problems getting where I needed to be; it just took twice as long as usual. And then, since so many people were staying home, I parked in the shelter of the freeway overhead [though it still makes me a little nervous, but I figured the pigeons that would ordinarily festoon my car, had better things to do that day, and the likelihood of the freeway falling down on my car was less than usual because it was frozen into place; yeah, I am just a wee bit claustrophobic, but I cope, weirdly].

I ended up on one of the trains that only runs half the route, to Centrepoint/DFW Airport, and changed trains there for BigD. Nice, easy trip, except for the part about exiting the train, walking across twenty feet of icy sidewalk, and climbing up too-shallow, too-steep steps to the old Silver Bullet and its bench seats.

While waiting for the first train to depart, I had discovered that Jeannie was still not to be, not with this yarn, not without a provisional cast-on. And I had left the Mystery Socks on the couch at home. But thankfully, I had grabbed some bits and bobs from other projects, to get a start on ornaments for this year, and I had my box of miscellaneous DP’s, so I worked on one miniature sweater on the ride in, and another on the ride home. Good times.

When I got to work at 11:00, I learned that the receptionist had not waited for the second announcement at 8:30, so she and one of the attorneys arrived at 10:00. She got to go home at 4:00, and I took care of switchboard until we closed at 5:00. But before that, she and I were the only admins besides the office manager, who arrived maybe five minutes after I did. We had three legal secretaries, then four, then five, and no paralegals. We had maybe five or six attorneys coming and going throughout the day. Thankfully, one of the legal secretaries who showed up, is the one I back up with my word processing, so she handled that task for the day, and I scanned the mail, which was blessedy lighter than usual.

Lunch and breaks were improvised around the workflow. I think I took my lunch around 2:15; I was maybe the last customer in the deli downstairs, and I got one of her fantastic chicken salad sandwiches.

Trainman was pleasantly surprised to see me, and we had another great visit. He introduced me to a woman who rides our train, and the three of us chatted about this and that. When we pulled into the station, I wished him goodnight and safe travel and a good weekend with his son. I walked to one end of the traincar; he walked to the other. He called back to say he would meet me outside and go down to the parking lot with me. Good thing, too; there was a weird, scary-looking guy who stepped off the elevator so we could get on. I felt just that bit safer with the Trainman standing at my side.

Once outside, we walked up the stairs to the parking lot. He was parked on the first row. I was a little farther back. I saw him get into his car, and I started looking around for mine. It wasn’t where I remembered it, so I was wandering about a bit. Then I noticed that he hadn’t taken off, and was rounding a turn to catch up with me.

I have had the sense before, that he waits until I get in my car before he takes off. Last night I hopped in his car, and we drove around a bit until we found Lorelai. He waited until I was in, buckled, and with my backing lights on before he waved again and headed out. And he stayed in front of me until I signaled for my exit.

It is things like this, that remind me what good care my Father takes of me.

I came home, reheated the leftover pizza from Tuesday night, and knitted while listening to another instalment of To Kill a Mockingbird. I didn’t turn on my cell phone, once. I need to, to see when the office is opening today, and then I need to bundle up and go out to the car much earlier than I did yesterday morning, in case the windows need scraping again.

I have worn handknitted socks every day of the week, so far. I have very, very happy feet.


gwtreece said...

Thank you trainman for taking care of her.

Sherry said...

I think I'd really like to meet this trainman. I did meet a couple of similarly nice younger men on my trip to Paris. They work at a school in North Carolina and were also participants in the Paris orientation for those of us who will lead student travel this year. On Sunday night a group of us, including these two fellows, went up to Sacre Coeur, the cathedral on Montmartre. Well, I'm horribly out of shape and was laboring up the quite steep hill when Dave dropped back, walked with me and even carried my coat so that I was less burdened. They were both really nice, probably 15 years younger than me, good looking, and fun as heck. We had a total of seven people on that adventure and we had a blast. They were all impressed with my ability to speak French and navigate the Paris metro and it was just so much fun! No romance for this old lady, but really nice companionship and a definite sense of protection on dark streets in a foreign city. We are blessed with fine friends, aren't we? Oh, I also made a friend of a Greek woman from Seattle, Poppy. She invited me to travel to her homeland with her someday. I sure hope I can go!

Jenni said...

I am going to get you a clapper for your car so that you can find it in dark parking garages.