Wednesday, January 14, 2009

How to Wait out a Blizzard


On the long drive home to Wisconsin from leaving our daughter at her Ohio college, a blizzard warning grounded us in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. The snow accumulation wouldn't be more than an inch or so, the warning said. The danger came from high winds kicking up the snow in rural areas. In town, it would be fine to move around.

Of all the places to wait out a blizzard, Champaign-Urbana is one of the better ones. It is the home of the University of Illinois and has all the amenities of a good college town.

Like, oh say ... interesting yarn shops.

Listen, if you're ever waiting out a blizzard in Champaign-Urbana, go to Klose Knit. Two seconds in the door, the women who run it had Tom in a comfy armchair. They brought him tea and cookies so I could fondle yarn. This is one of those stores that if you could buy their entire inventory, you would.

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I limited myself to two balls of Plymouth Yarn Co. Happy Feet sock yarn in a malachite green, two pairs of dpns, and a copy of The Eclectic Sole: Socks for Adventurous Knitters by Janel Laidman. This is one of those books you need to see in person to appreciate. I was under an odd, mistaken impression. I thought this
was a gimicky book of socks, the gimick being eclectic soles, as in the cover picture, and who really cares what the soles are like???

I know. The book is completely not that. It is an eclectic collection of 14 original, intriguing, well-written sock patterns using a variety of techniques. If you appreciate the clarity and organization of a Nancy Bush, this book will not disappoint. It's that good.

Back in the hotel room, Tom slipped his bookmark out of Doris Kearns Goodwin's Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln and I cast on for Rivendell.

1 comment:

Raveller said...

Aw, I love Champaign Urbana. My husband and I met there at Illini Tower during a tornado watch.