Miss Me?

Ladies and gentlemen of the blog… Look who’s home.
The Dublin Bay socks are finished, as is your faithful Harlot. Much was knit, much was bought, much magnificent Canadian wilderness was sighted and enjoyed, and we are tired and re-inspired in our patriotic nature. Beauty, thy name is…well, anything along the whole east coast of Canada pretty much.
Today’s photo essay…St. John’s Newfoundland. (The whole trip is too big to go on a single day, and the dial up people should just go get a bottle of wine, these days will be a little photo heavy.) The eight million rolls of film we took are yet to be developed, so you’ll be contenting yourselves with way…way too many pictures from my digital.
The Dublin Bay sock arrived in St. John’s. We stayed at a little house on the Battery, overlooking St. John’s harbour, and within moments of arriving, Joe’s super active dad Joe (we call him “old Joe” to avoid confusion. He loves that.) had taken us here.
This is your trusty harlot, bravely sitting on the edge of a cliff (though there is some rocks and stuff that would smash you to bits before you plunged to your death in the sea) on a hike up Signal Hill, all for the sake of a quintessential maritime photo. I’m knitting (of course) the Dublin bay socks, while overlooking the narrows, the entrance to St. John’s harbour. The harbour itself is to the right. In this photo I am (for the sake of those inclined to know these things) about 1/5th of the way up Signal hill. (You may note the largeness of my maritime hair. By the end of the trip I was in danger of knocking people over with it).
This is the sock, the children and the enthusiastic Grandad at the top. The hike up the hill ends with an unmerciful flight of stairs that, when sighted from the trail, will suck the very will to climb right out of you. It was at this point…right when I was about to complain (not really complain, just sort of maybe say that I was a little tired) that Old Joe remarked that he JOGS the trail every morning that he is in St. John’s. Jogs. I was speechless. I’m a pretty fit lady, but this trail made me tired, and here my father in law, (who’s age we shall not discuss but you may infer at will) Jogs it.
I decided at exactly that moment, that I wouldn’t even complain about that trail. My legs could fall off, my arse could seize into a solid immobile mass, my lungs freeze in my body, in fact…I decided right that second, right when he said “jog” that I would Die on that trail before I spoke even one single word of complaint out loud in the presence of my father in law. Die.
The next day we went to Cape Spear, and the sock looked out over the most eastern point in North America.
The children scrambled over the rocks while Joe and I argued about the possibility of enormous rogue waves sweeping them out to sea. I claimed that I had seen such things on TV, and that I was sure that this looked like exactly the sort of place that this could happen. Joe countered with his experience of the sea, and my various overprotective qualities as a mother. The dispute was settled when Old Joe rounded the corner, saw the children on the rocks and warned us about the enormous rogue waves that can sweep children out to sea. I smirked for some time. (This proves a theory that I’ve been working on for some time. PBS saves lives. It also proves a secondary theory about which person in this marriage should be in charge and officially designated *right*, but that would be too much smirking.)
Back into St. John’s, and the sock watched a tattoo at Cabot tower,
and hiked part of the East Coast Trail by Bay Bulls with Joe’s Aunt Julie and Uncle Pete. Pictures to come of this, since the trail was long and the digital camera heavy. I only took the regular camera and…er…left the sock behind. I’m not sorry either. For a piece of knitting the DBS do okay. If they think that I’m going to wallow in guilt because I didn’t take them to the Avalon Peninsula when they got to go to three other provinces and a Prince concert…well, there are no words for that kind of self-absorbed sock-centric behaviour. The sock can suck it up.
Later that day I got a chance to visit NONIA (read this older blog entry if you don’t already know why this place is cool) and marveled at the mountains of handknits, and stuck my hands into about ninety pairs of thrummed mittens. While there I apparently lost my ever-loving mind and bought this.
It’s a Cross-stitch kit. (I swear to you that I was completely sober.) It’s a completely accurate little picture of Gower St. in St. Johns, with all it’s pretty coloured row houses. I asked a local why they are such wild colours and he told me that the way he sees it, it’s one of two reasons. Either it’s to keep your soul alive in the winter, when St. Johns is colourless for so long, or it’s so that you can pick your own little house out when you are “drunk as a woodlice in a rum barrel”. (In our house you would be “tree sheets to da wind”.)
Finally, as if St. Johns could be any better than it already was, we took a whale watching trip on the Scademia.
Out on the ocean, the sock felt the wind in its…er, fibres, and was stunned senseless by the family of humpback whales that swam with us, under us and around us. The captain of the boat is something else. He called the whales, and they came. The only thing that was more fun than seeing whales, was seeing my kids see whales.
The Scademia was home to my most profound Newfoundland moment. The moment that defined it all. The sun was setting over the ocean, the whales were swimming out and the wind was in the sails.
The wind was everywhere actually and I was a little bit cold (read freezing. Absolutely freezing, I couldn’t feel my fingers) and I sent my lovely sunbrowned curly haired love to get me a warm drink. When he came back I asked if they had anything warm.
“Just rum” he said, and handed me a glass.
Long may yer big jib draw.

32 thoughts on “Miss Me?

  1. SO glad you’re home! We all missed you desparately, and I’m actually tearing up a bit reading this, living vicariously through your socks. I understand and accept that in most circles that might be an odd statement, but hang it all, that’s what I’m doing. Living vicariously through your socks, and doing so with (some) pride!

  2. Welcome back, you were greatly missed, but what an amazing trip. I am feeling more relaxed just seeing pictures from it.

  3. At dinner last night I commented that next year’s family vacation will be to the Maritime Provinces (this year’s vacation included Victoria in BC, although only briefly). My husband said “Really? How do you know anything about them?” and I said “Well, I know this blogger….”
    After one obligatory eye-roll he agreed to trust you.
    And *he* doesn’t even *know* you!!!
    (Don’t be afraid, Harlot…we’re not really *stalking* you, exactly….)

  4. I’m just saying, those socks? If they were complaining, I saw plenty of opportunities for them to engage in “sudden” skydiving and let them knit their own chute.
    Glad you’re back and enjoyed your trip!

  5. I’m just beaming from ear to ear. 🙂
    And I’m so going to the Maritimes (I like to pronounce it in French). Sounds and looks wonderful.
    Aaaaahhhhhhhhh. The Harlot is safely and happily back. Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh.

  6. Welcome back! Wonderful pictures… I look forward to the rest, and I’m itching to get out to the Atlantic provinces myself. I’m so sorry I won’t be able to go to the SnB tomorrow night (a Baseball Game, of all things!) and so will (presumably) miss hearing some of the stories in person! I’ll just have to wait to catch up on the poncho news…

  7. We have Harlot! And the beautiful DBS. So glad you’re back home with wonderful stories to tell and pictures to illustrate it all. We’ve missed you.

  8. Hooray! You’re home. Looks like you had a lovely time and I’m (almost) sorry that we didn’t go to PEI & Newfoundland for our honeymoon (We ended up in Costa Rica, if PEI or Newfoundland had an active volcano I’m sure we would have gone there instead as the desire for fire and brimstone was what finally lured us south of the border)
    I have a question though. Now that the Dublin Bay Socks are done, what piece of knitting is going to pose in all of your pictures?!??!

  9. Thanks for the map… I love the little cross-stich-thing. Looks like the right souvenir..

  10. Nothing witty — just happiness you’re back and great huge stinking green wads of envy about the trip. What a great place! (Lucky socks.)

  11. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. I am content, a sated little blogger-constrictor who has just swallowed a small, delicious Newfoundland cow and is now basking in the afterglow. I expect to have it digested by about noon tomorrow, mind, so no laurel-resting. (One advantage of your being a) Canadian and b) on holiday is that you haven’t had to listen to our idiot announcers referring to the victors’ wreaths as “olive wreaths.” Dull roars from south of the border have been picky old moi. A digression to keep you from seeing how embarrassingly delighted I am you’re back.) Mwa. (As opposed to “moi.”)

  12. Whew, living on the edge with that Extreme Knitting – I can see a reality show in the works…
    So glad you’re back, and will there now be a cross-stitch blog?

  13. Welcome back, all. You’ve been missed. I’m so glad that no one went plummeting off the cliffs & that you were able to indulge in a little fiberocity. I’m looking forward to a peek at the goodies.

  14. As a expat Maritimer, I get all misty remembering my pre-gel hair days and the solar eclipsing size of my own frizz. And I remember the Screech my Dad got as joke presents at work every Christmas, and watching fiddlers and stompers with their portable linoleum floors square off on the street corners during the Saint John Loyalist Days festival every year. And I shudder at the thought of the songs my well-meaning music teacher made us sing in the name of tradition. Maybe you heard this one:
    Some are workin’ their jiggers while others are yarnin’,
    There’s some standin’ up and there’s more lyin’ down;
    While all kinds of fun, jokes and tricks are begun
    As they wait for the squid on the squid-jiggin’ ground.
    Still there on the back shelf in my head after all these years.
    Welcome home, Harlot.

  15. I just thought: How disappointing that we only get to see your ankles, and not your already-amazing-even-before-the-bike-trip calves.
    Perhaps you are taking pity on those of us who wish showing a bit of ankle was still considered sexy, and nobody noticed your hips because of the bustle!
    The socks are, of course, to die for.

  16. I, for one, am so happy to see you’ve returned!
    I look at Cross stitch kits now and again, but so far I’ve always been able to hold myself back….telling myself it would take up way to much knitting time… 🙂

  17. I’m ashamed, being less traveled than the Dublin Bay Socks!
    It’s nice to have you back. I can’t wait for more stories of the trip.

  18. Welcome back Stephanie! I’ve been filling the void by going back through your blog. and spindling away madly….
    You are still Number One Harlot on Google! You must be so proud!

  19. I love these photos where the knitting takes in the sights! And what beautiful sights they are. What better views could a sock ask for?!

  20. I’d just like to say that, as a Direct Result of this blog, I’m canvassing for honeymooning in Newfoundland. Successfully, even. Especially after I visited one of the tourist board sites and looked at the pictures and showed them to the groom who then made many impressed and approving noises.
    So do you get a kickback for stimulating tourism? Because if you don’t, you should.
    I can’t wait to hear about the rest of the trip!

  21. Welcome back! It’s so nice to have you home. Well done on the DBS, they look great! I can’t wait to see more photos from the trip- I’ve got loads of bandwidth! 🙂

  22. I don’t know Harlot, looks like you put those dear socks in some dangerous positions – on railings, dangling over rocky shore lines. This is knitting ala Michael Jackson! (too bad for my attempts at humor that you weren’t actually working on a blanket!!)

  23. Just found your blog and got totally “sucked in” – I think I was surfing around for a poncho pattern but can’t remember for sure what my original intention was…
    Your writing is so much fun to read – you should send some stories to Interweave Press. I bet they would love the pattern and story of the Waves sweater.
    I will be back for more!

  24. I really enjoyed your web blog! The pictures with bits of your knitting in front of Newfie scenery are humorous – they really add to the upbeat nature of your blog. Your writing style is quite enjoyable, and I hope to read more of your “yarns” as the months go on.
    I came across your blog via a search for pictures of the “Jelly Bean Houses” on Gower Street. My husband, a Newfie, was recently back home to visit his mother. Being the sweet thing that he is, he went into one of my favourite stores, Nonia, to buy me some gifts. Among the gifts he bought was the cross stitch kit of the Gower Street row houses that you also bought! I wanted to see how much creative license the creator of the kit had taken in choosing colours for the houses. I have found that the colours in the kit are quite accurate. So, I’ll stitch the kit with the DMC colours provided – well, mostly. I can’t resist taking a bit of my own creative license!
    Please keep adding the humorous bits to your stories – especially for all the knitters who like to be kept “in stitches.”

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