Madrona is finished, and oh, what a lovely time I had.  I admit that it’s pretty hard to go wrong with the set up.  Awesome teachers, awesome vendors, awesome students – and now that I’ve been coming for years, so many of them are friends and acquaintances that I feel like it’s a homecoming when I arrive.  I look forward to all the moments I’ll have, and not just with my old friends –   getting to know new students and colleagues better, although I do approach this with caution.

(I had a bad case of camnesia, so I don’t really have any pictures, other than this one, which is Mt. Rainier out my hotel room window. I know it’s sort of unrelated, but there you go.)

For example, it seems that every time I touch Shelter yarn it costs me $100.  I can’t live that way, ergo, I must not touch Shelter yarn.  (To be fair, talking about it too much, or spending too much time near it has a similar effect.) Now here I am at Madrona, and one of the teachers is Jared Flood, and I think he’s nice- but really our relationship consists of shaking hands and being polite to each other, which is all well and good, but I’d like to get to know him better – which I could totally do at Madrona, but I have a feeling that actually hanging out with him would cost me a lot more than the $100 just being near his yarn does. Similarly, I think that I’d love to hang out a lot more with Syne Mitchell, but I don’t have room in my house for a floor loom- and I feel sure that any real time spent with her would end like that.  

In this spirit, I don’t spend a lot of time in the Marketplace.  Madrona is an intimate and lovely setting for vendors I think, and I feel like you can really get to know them as people – and that cannot, if one’s resolve is somewhat tenuous at best… be a good thing.  I don’t know about you, but if I know and like the people who have the yarn, then I am even more likely to give them money. 

With all this in mind, I had a great plan. I was going to cruise the market once or twice (with support) and then go into the Habu booth, and buy one thing I’ve really been wanting.  I’ve had my eye on that crazy Kusha Kusha scarf for about a year.  It’s one strand of merino, and one strand of wool/stainless steel, and you combine them for about 2/3 of the scarf, then knit just with the stainless, then felt the thing.  It’s gorgeous.  I’ve been a little psyched by it for a while.  I love how you can shape it, but it’s still fluid, and I feel like it’s such a beautiful study in contrasts… the soft and woolly merino felted against the crisp looking stainless… I had it bad for this scarf. One evening I surfed through the Ravelry projects for it, and I saw this one, and this one, and then (be still my heart) this one, and I knew I was done.  I had to have it… and I’ve been waiting for Madrona since then.  I’ve been all about the Kusha Kusha scarf for a while – and it was going to be what  I bought at Madrona.  That was my plan.  Kusha Kusha, nothing else. I talked about Kusha Kusha. I dreamed of it.  I was firm.

On Thursday I announced my intentions to Tina, and together we went into the marketplace and journeyed to the Habu booth.  I looked at all the great yarns, but I was unshakable in my resolve.  I was having a Kusha Kusha scarf.  Only that scarf would do, and it was all I was buying.  The Kusha Kusha scarf was enough, because it was perfect.   I admired the stainless… I admired the merino.  I chose colours that would go together and I loved it and I was satisfied and there was nothing more that I could want.

Then I turned around. 

On the wall behind me was a sample sweater.  More like a jacket. A jacket/sweater thing.  Point is… it was beautiful.  It hung there, all sort of vaguely felty and asymmetrical and it was stunning in that Matrix-post-apocalyptic -my clothes are beautiful rags sort of way.  The instant I saw it, my heart turned over- and I pointed up at it, as the world spun around me a little, and I turned to Jeane (Jean? I was struck blind by the yarn and couldn’t read her nametag right)  and said "What sweater is that?"  I think my voice shook.  Jeane leant over, and said "Which one? That one?"  I nodded dumbly.
"That’s the Kusha Kusha Jacket" she said.

I handed her my credit card.  Really.  That’s a sign.   It won’t arrive for a few weeks though, and that gives me time to make the scarf.  Or two.  Or five…