Sunday, November 04, 2007

Lighter in the Wallet Today

Yesterday turned out to be a really nice day. I figured it would, but I got a late start and I didn't really have any "meet-up" plans with people, so I was unsure in a way that I really shouldn't bother with in the future. Things work out - especially in a building full of knitters.

Rotterdam Centraal is a horrible mess. My first reaction was to say, "It's like the Texas State Fair!" It was a Dutch woman, Danny, and she said, "We have no idea what you're talking about," without missing a beat. The idea I was trying to get across (albeit badly) was that there were signs everywhere, people walking in every direction and it was very difficult to get from one place to the other, or find the bus to take me to the Van Nelle. That said, I haven't been to the Texas State Fair in probably about 25 years, so I'm working on fumes with that analogy.

Fortunately, I ran into Danny and her friend Caroline at the bus stop, so I was immediately among friends walking in the door. The main hall was on the ground floor of the building. It's a large, airy room with lots of windows. There were tons of vendors hawking their wares. Some booths had very specialized stuff, like lace things (needles, fibers, etc.) or exotic fibers (think banana fibre yarn). One booth had knitted or crocheted bonnet the size that a baby or doll might wear, and a large woman wear an adult sized bonnet. A Swedish woman sold books on Swedish twining, written in Swedish. That's were twenty of my euros went, but the stuff was so cool looking that I wanted it in the hopes that one of these days I would try it.

Most of the booths sold regular and hard-to-find (in Amsterdam) yarns. In reviewing my purchases, I realize that I bought mostly self-pattering sock yarn (forgive me, I am new to the sock world). I also picked up five skeins of Noro (represented by the first picture) and three skeins of a Tibetan Wool-Silk. It's 60% wool and 40% recycled silk. It's really pretty green with lots of color bits mixed in. Forgive the photos. Neither snap really does the yarn justice. Strange light today. Very muted. Good for studying (or blogging), not for snapping pics.

I'm thinking "scarf" and I'm thinking of doing it in the pattern that Jared did his Noro scarf in. The original plan was garter stitch, but that might drive me absolutely bonkers. Even a K1 P1 repeat for three skeins is better than straight knitting. Of course I'll swatch and see how they both look. I got the Tibetan stuff from the girls at Woool in the Hague. I'll have to make it down to their store one of these days. They're young and hip and very friendly.

I also ran into Marion at the volunteer booth (always an enthusiastic chat) and met a very nice woman American woman named Gini. Then during the 90 seconds I was talking to Wendel (she was in a hurry), Alexandra walked up to me and said, "You're Andy." She recognized me from the blog. At first I was a little bit surprised. How did she pick me out of the crowd? But when I figured that 98% of the people there were women, I started to wonder how she didn't find me sooner. It was a nice little feeling of notoriety. I've had a couple of people contact me through the blog. Feel free. (I'm very approachable.)

Towards the end of the day, I got a shot of Robert on a spinning wheel. He'd just taken a spinning class and was convinced to give it a whirl. I didn't. My brain was too full. However, it looks like something I would really enjoy. Of that I have no doubt. This model even comes with a handy carrying case - all for the low low price of € 440 (yesterday only - it's normally € 475.) But it's beautiful and very relaxing, or so I've heard. Plus, doesn't spinning your own yarn save you tons of money?

My Pecan Pie class was interesting. Nancy Merchant did it in Dutch, which impressed me. It was easy enough to follow. Plus she kept coming over to me to help me (using our secret English language). It was a fun experience, but I have no beret to show for it. She said she'll help me on Monday evening at the SnB. She's a peach. Speaking of celebrity sightings, I saw Debbie Stoller. I was sort of in my own head, so I didn't do anything but glance. Plus, she looked like she was in a hurry. I must say that she's sort of foxy in person. Pictures don't do her justice. Her new book is not yet out, so I didn't get it, or her signature.

And I ended the day by going to a Dutch birthday party. (To the uninitiated: Believe me, anyone who is reading this who is "in the know" just winced.) It was actually not the traditional Dutch birthday party. It was a good time. But I'll save that story for later.


Marion said...

Hi Andy, I attended the twined knitting workshop and bought the book as well. I'll be happy to help you out and show you what I've learned on Monday at the SnB-evening!

Mama Mojo said...

Wow. Knitting looks like a lot of fun! :-) You're on to something there...

Rotterdam CS is under renovation until 2009, or so. It should be pretty nice once it's finished.

What beautiful yarn! I'm envious. Tibetan silk. I love it.

Soph! said...

beautiful yarn! I am also a knitter!

also, even though you haven't been to the Texas State fair in a looooong time, your analogy still works! Still crazy!

-another Texan in Holland

Anonymous said...

I must say, I have never heard you describe someone as foxy.

Klozter said...

What a fabbo day! I could just cry that I wasn't there. Bring your loot tonight so we can ooh and aah!