Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Socks for a friend

As mentioned yesterday, in Sydney today, we visited a very old friend of Sean's who is dying. They have known each other for nearly 20 years, thereabouts and he's just always been there. I met him the same day I met Sean, a decade ago this month. Soon, he won't be here any more. 

Today was strange. I kept feeling myself sink into 'remember when' moments and then stopped myself. It didn't seem right. I think we both just wanted to be there with him no matter the awkwardness, the sadness, the uncertainty.

Even though it's summer now and even though he may not ever wear them, I had to knit socks for him. I've been telling him i would for so long and I was continually put off by his size 13 feet. The state of things meant that last month, I decided at once I had to finally knit the socks, no matter the absurdity of heavy weight socks in an Australian summer.

Mick's Socks

In the absence of the words to say what we feel, sometimes we just have to do something. I couldn't let him go knowing I'd failed to knit these for him.

He was weak and quiet but he smiled and tried one of them on despite the fact that in Western Sydney today it was pushing 41 degrees (or 105 F). He smiled. I got the size right. They are huge. 

They are the Thuja pattern from Knitty, knit in 3 balls of Patons Jet, which is my new love. Lovely alpaca-wool blend and just great for so many things. I made these as inside socks for our friend, but I reckon the thickness of them could mean they are great winter weight boot socks. 

I sincerely hope he'll be around to wear them in winter when they are most needed.