Amanda asked a good question earlier in the week: How's the subway knitting, Subway Knitter?
My new commute is in two parts. First, coming and going from Astoria I'm on the N or the W train. Knitting on that is cake (mmm, cake) because I get on at the last stop:
See? Few people, many seats.
On the other hand, once I get to Manhattan I change to the 4,5 train (Incidentally, how should I write that? With commas? Slashes? "The four and five?" You hear everyone say "Take the fourfive." But you don't see many of them blogging about it.) I seldom find a seat until Wall Street, and then it's only one more stop until my final destination.*
The 4,5 trains have better air conditioning than the N or the W, and these days that's nothing to shake a (wooden, pointy) stick at. Quite honestly, it has been too hot to knit this week.
Let's hope that The Point is air-conditioned. Today marks my first meeting as an official Spider!
[*To those New Yorkers in the know: yes, I could take the W the entire way if I desired a more knitterly commute. Changing trains saves me time.]
Despite being on the go almost constantly, I got loads of knitting done on my trip. Unfortunately this cardigan was supposed to be done for this trip, but then the original plan didn't consider that I would move house in between casting on and binding off. But, I'm not far behind. Perhaps I can wear this by the weekend. Or the Fourth? Maybe that's a better goal.
I'll pack my DPNs this morning. With a little bit of subway karma going my way, I should be able to bind off the shoulder seam somewhere between here and the office.
[Apologies: my comment script is down, and I can't fix it in time for this post. If you have something to share, please drop me an email.]
So, I'm back in New York, and ready to begin Day 1 of My Normal Life as a New Yorker (MNLNY), and honestly I'm a bit nervous about how I'll fit in. At least I know what to do during my commute...
Last week was all about the Mid West. First, Chicago, then Two Rivers, Wisconsin, then Racine. Last week was also all about Frank Lloyd Wright. I had to put down my needles to take a few photos.
I have to say, Oak Park, Illinois was yummy (and not just for the Wright buildings). This is the Arthur B. Heurtley House, I believe, designed by none other than FLW. Schwing-o (as a former colleague might have said when confronted with fabulous design). And that wasn't all the Wright we saw. We experienced Wright first hand!
Even the cardigan loves it! Okay, it might look like it's simply lying in the grass, but don't be fooled. It's swooning in architectural delight.
All in all, a good vacation.
Not quite. But I am off to my third city in just as many weeks. No I'm not moving again (I don't even want to think about that.) I'm off to Chicago, then Racine, Wisconsin for a vacation. Does anyone know any good yarn stores out that way?
So, I'll see you all in about a week.
Meanwhile, a picture of the cardigan in Astoria Park, with the Triborough Bridge in the background.
Well, the people in my old neighborhood must have lots to be proud of today. Way to go Massachusetts!
Meanwhile in my new neighborhood, I'm busy making discoveries. Did I know that there are two fabric/yarn stores within walking distance of my front door? I did not.
These aren't fantastic yarn or fabric stores. In fact, describing them as "basic" would be generous. Still, if I need a spool of thread, or have a hankering (hee, hee) for some Red Heart, I know where to go. Both stores are on Ditmars Boulevard, just a block or three east of 31st Street.
First, we have Lamia Fabric & Variety. It has an odd mix of merchandise. Fabric, yarn, notions, plus watches and hair accessories.
Here's a photo of the yarn selection:
See what I mean about basic?
Then, further east on Ditmars I stumbled across this:
As the name implies the store mostly sells fabric, although I noticed some Paton's yarn (on sale).
I've never had a fabric store within walking distance, never mind two. Too bad the sewing machine's in storage.
Here we go:
And, thanks to my chauffeur-driven Budget Truck, there was knitting:
I was welcomed to the city by Ms. Yarnish who, along with her husband Eric, willingly volunteered their Sunday afternoon to help Sven and me unload the moving truck. And they rocked it pretty hard. Jackie was ferrying carts up and down the freight elevator like a pro, and Eric and Sven did some kind of space-whisperer thing in my storage locker to get everything inside neatly.
The move went incredibly smoothly, thanks in a large part to Jackie and Eric's willingness to help. Seriously, I emailed that woman a week or so ago to ask if she had an hour or two to spare, and I had an enthusiastic response to that email in about an hour. How's about that for a warm welcome? I'm not sure how we would have done it without their help. Thanks guys!
So, I'm as settled as I'm going to be for the next couple of months. Do I feel like a New Yorker yet? Good question. Let me think about that while I eat my bagel. And if only that car alarm that's been going off for the past hour underneath my window would STOP, I could eat in peace...
Thanks for eight years of your time. But the signs are clear, I need to go:
I once read that fifty percent of Boston's population changes every ten years. That means that one out of every two of us lives in Boston for ten years or less. The constant turnover keeps the city vibrant.
Bye Boston, I'll miss you. But I know that I'll be back to visit and see how you've changed. And you never know where life will lead. I could be back. Meanwhile, I know that I'm leaving you in the hands of some wonderful subway knitters. Andrea has kindly volunteered to step in and maintain the Knit In Public, Boston list.
Catch you all on the other side.
You all know that Boxing Day is the day after Christmas. But it's felt like boxing day every day for the past two weeks chez Subway Knitter.
And by now chez Subway Knitter is mostly in boxes. Except for the knitting, of course. Today all of this (except for the knitting) will be loaded into a truck.
As one of my friends said after she asked about my packing progress, "You're ready to not be living here anymore." In some ways that's true. My stuff is packed, there's no turning back. I'm relieved, happy, sad, excited, nervous, but ultimately completely convinced that it's time to go.
The knitting, however, is completely thrilled to be exempted from packing duties. Believe me, if I could have knit myself movers, I would have.
I'm glad that I'm not the only one who thinks that Windsor Button is a treasure. Jessica encouraged me to explore the Garment District in Manhattan. You better believe that I will be doing more of that. I wonder how long that sewing machine of mine is going to remain in storage....
And I was intrigued to read that Windsor Button once had other locations besides the Temple Place store. I hadn't imagined it did, but writing that just now, I wonder if the name reflects another location in downtown. I can't think of a Windsor Street (Place, Ave, Lane, etc.) in downtown (and perhaps that's why the shop moved), but Google Maps tells me that there is one near Melnea Cass in Roxbury. It's hard to imagine that a sewing shop ever existed over there. In Dudley Square, perhaps I could see it. That far out of Dudley on what was undoubtedly a residential street...
Anyway, I began this post to write about two knittings bags. Neither of which entered this world to be a knitting bag. But that's how it always is.
First we have the urban girl's carry all. As you know, I'm mere days from becoming the MTA's newest subway knitter. I have this bag courtesy of an anonymous benefactor. Someone knew that I needed this bag before I knew that I needed this bag. Oh sure, I wanted it. But I didn't need it.
Or so I thought. Can I tell you how wonderful this bag is? How perfect it is for subway knitting? Not only can I fit a file or two in the outside pockets, but the inside pocket holds almost a limitless amount of stuff. Feel free to throw in your lunch, waterbottle, knittingandyour tool pouch, because this bag holds it all. I liked this bag so much that I immediately bought one for my sister who, while not a knitter, is a mom. And I'm sure that Miss Kate requires a lot of accessories when she's out and about. Now my sister can carry them all in style.
Second, we have the accidental knitting bag. A little more than a month ago I had a job interview all lined up in NYC (and we all know how *that* turned out). I needed a new bag big enough to hold a file folder and a small knitting project (because after the interview my plan was to make a bee line to the Spiders). It also needed to look somewhat professional. The BI bag above wasn't going to cut it. I found this bag (Tommy H. no less--and it's not emblazoned with logos, although the lining is a bright, very-TH, blue) at Filene's Basement and I thought the half-tied bow thing on the front was very cute.
And what's peaking out of this here bag? Nothing other than a signed P&S on my condo! I accepted an offer two weeks ago today (and a mere eight days post-listing) but I refused to blog about it until I had the signed P&S in my hot little hands. I'm happy that someone likes my little condo as much as I do, and I know that leaving this place behind is the most sensible thing to do (Subway Knitter a long-distance, absentee landlord? I don't think so.)
I'm feeling pretty giddy this morning. Perhaps it's the coffee, or perhaps the tar fumes from my neighbor's roofing project (which smell weird, but surprisingly not horrific) are going to my head. Whatever's the cause, I'll take it.
I share with you something that I did this morning: I consolidated my Bloglines and Newsgator feed lists. About a year ago Bloglines became blocked at work. Apparently I was violating Rule #5 by attempting to access Bloglines. I could discover neither the text of Rule #5 nor of what it was a part. Newsgator, however, never suffered the same fate. So, what began as two identical feed lists slowly diverged as things were added and subtracted from one but not from the other. I hope that I can let the Newsgator list slowly fade into oblivion (never liked the format over there).
Add to that the fact that one by one all of my knitblog reads were being blocked (again with the Rule #5 stuff) and that meant that my blog reading (something I really enjoy) was slowing being stolen from me. And even when I could get to a blog, the photos and comment application were often off limits (yup, #5).
So, this morning, in a bit of internet housekeeping, I updated my Bloglines list. Whew! It's fun to be reading all of you regularly once again.
Something else I did (yesterday) was to get out and about. I had to buzz by Windsor Button one last time. Someone, please tell me where the WB equivalent is in NYC, because I know that I'm gonna need it. WB is just the right mix of a proper yarn store with a side of Michael's or AC Moore thrown in.
This greeted me at the door:
Mmm, Malabrigo Laceweight. And, the kind folk at Windsor Button also pointed out (hee, hee) that the Addi Lace needles are in stock.
Ah, Windsor Button, I'm going to miss you.
An indication of how disorganized my leisure time has been: I cleared out all of the unread posts in my Bloglines account for the first time in months. And I cleared them out by actually reading the posts, not by clicking the "Mark All Read" option. I also spent at least two hours this morning clearing out all of the old junk comments that have come my way. I began the task thinking "I did this a few weeks ago." Not so. The last spam-free comment days were from late April. The next task will be to sort out some spam protection once and for all.
Disorganized does necessarily mean bad. I've had lots to do. Lots to do that didn't involve sitting in front of the internet. And that, as you might understand, has been one of many welcome changes. I don't think that I could have imagined any of this happening a year ago.
So, in another break from the usual, I'm simply enjoying the process of this cardigan. I know that I'm normally a product knitter, but this time I'm letting the product happen as it will and am letting the process envelop me.
As a temporary measure, I've enabled comment modification. This means that your comment won't show up on the blog until I approve it. Also, in my de-spamming spree I think that I accidentally banned some of you from commenting. Sorry! If you have problems posting a comment, drop me an email at colleen[st]subwayknitter[dot]com.
I'm in denial about my cardigan.
With this much progress, there's almost no way that I'll have it finished in two weeks. Especially when those two weeks include moving. And, call me crazy, but after a couple of hours of packing, all I want to do is go outside and walk around in the sunshine.
Not like there's been much of that lately...
So, I give you a flashback from last week. Knitting in Freeman Square, Brookline:
Whew, it's going to be another great day in Boston. And I'm officially on vacation for the next three weeks! Granted, that vacation includes packing up my home and moving 200 miles away, but whatever. I still have lots of time every day to sit back, relax, knit, and enjoy these last weeks in Boston.