Sunday, 26 April 2009

Knitting Camp 2009

As you may well imagine, a weekend of knitting, talking, eating, drinking and more knitting is pretty fabulous but also pretty bloody exhausting. When Sean picked me up from Wollongong mid afternoon today, I believe I sank into the car and sat staring comatose out the window for a fair whack of the journey home.

Between late nights, early starts and an extensive amount of talking and knitting, often at the same time, it's enough to wear a girl out. Still, I have had dinner, changed into PJs and had a glass of wine so I am suitably refreshed and able to cobble together some sort of picture of what a wonderful weekend it was.

Here's a mosaic of some photos from the weekend. As usual, click on the hyperlinks below to see any of the photos properly in flickr, with descriptions etc.

Knitting Camp Mosaic

1. pi blanket, 2. lynS, 3. Myrtle Shawl At Camp, 4. Ailsa and Donna - dinner, 5. Knitting in the Sun, 6. Knitting camp - outside, 7. Knitting camp - Saturday morning, 8. Rainforest Chapel at Mt Keira, 9. Playing Dressups - Saturday night Hawaiian Dinner, 10. Matchy Matchy, 11. Bells & Jejune, 12. Bells & Kylie

Arriving at camp late afternoon and Friday, Jejune and I set up our room and waited for others to arrive. And arrive they did. Hoards of knitters, refugees from the working week, arrived bursting with excitement. Those girls (and Lee*) sure can talk! We were raucous. I think there's no other word for it.

There were people to meet. This weekend, although there were vast numbers of knitters I already knew from blogs or Ravlery, there were still more to meet. It's wonderful, and sometimes a little weird, to meet complete strangers and be known as Bells, not as Helen. I'm sure we all have that experience. A person might introduce you as their real name but until you place them by the name they use online, you're all at sea.

And really, the rest of the weekend was much of the same. Raucous, incessant chatter. An endless parade of knits. We had two Tangled Yoke cardigans; three February Lady Sweaters in progress (and a baby version); one Eastlake jumper; two complete Autumn Rose jumpers (photo #10 above) and more socks than I can list. Sometimes I just sat back and watched people diving on each other's ankles, guessing at patterns and yarns and making all the usual noises of praise and admiration.

Honestly, there are few greater treats in life than to spend a weekend with your dearest friends, doing little more than the very thing that brought you together in the first place. Sometimes I am gobsmacked by the notion that years ago, when I thought, hmmm, maybe I'll take up knitting again, it opened up the world to me.

If that moment hadn't happened, I wouldn't have spent the weekend high up on Mt Keira, surrounded by rainforest and sharing a weekend with friends I adore and knitters I got to know a little better.

It is possible, though, that there is such a thing as too much knitting. I worked extensively on a gift pi blanket - 12ply yarn, 6mm needles and a lot of stitches. That much heavy weight knitting can make a girl's fingers throb, ever so slightly.


* this refers to the fact that this year, we were joined by a solitary man, Lee. Each time the organisers of the camp addressed the entire group, they would begin, 'Ladies! And Lee.' It made us laugh. Maybe you had to be there. I had to share at least one in joke.