August 27, 2004

When will it end?

Soon. The endless parade of "what I did on my summer vacation ends soon. I'm keeping the pictures of Baadeck Yarns for afters, since I know that I need to give you all a reason to hang in there. For today however, we are tramping through Cape Breton (part of Nova Scotia) and Prince Edward Island.

After taking the Caribou across the Cabot Strait we drove across Cape Breton (Many thanks to Dave and Joe's sister Kelly for picking us up) until we reached the home of Dave and Camille. Dave and Camille are Kelly's incredibly generous and hospitable in-laws, and they put the whole Harlot tribe, plus Ken up, and served as a launching pad for the bike trip. (This was brave. Really, as blog readers I know that you imagine that I am a handful, but really, out of all of us, I am the easy one in this operation. (That's a lie. A huge lie. If you are really going to include all of us... Ken is the easy one, although I do clean stuff up.)

Dave and Camille have the most beautiful home sitting right on the ocean. The children disappeared the minute I got there, and a while later (yup...a while, I get the mother of the year award again) I asked Kelly where they got to. Kelly said that they had gone to play in the ocean, Amanda, Megan, Sam, Savannah, Kamilah and Asha (Asha was on loan from England. Lovely girl.) "Playing in the ocean" sounded like the kind of thing I should sort of have a look at, even though my kids swim well. Kelly and I walked to the shore and I looked down at the beach for my kids. The beach is down a cliff and the kids (and the grown-ups) climb up and down a rope to get there (there's a path further down for anybody who would like to be called a pansy), then a beautiful rocky beach, then the ocean shore. I looked all along, but couldn't see the girls. Kelly pointed them out to me. I followed her pointing arm and there they were, six little specks bobbing in the sea about a football field out from the shore.

My heart stopped. Kelly seemed unconcerned. I didn't tell Kelly, though I'm sure she guessed, that I stripped myself of the "mother of the year award" and gave it to her in an instant. Was she out of her mind? Did she care nothing for their safety? What kind of a woman lets six lovely little girls swim so far out from the shore that you could never swim out to save them in time? What about the undertow? What about being able to touch bottom? What about whales, or passing ships or ....well I don't know, but I assure you that if you were there you would have flipped out. I didn't flip out (outwardly) and instead of accusing Kelly of losing her everloving mind, I just quietly said..."Oh no...that's too far. They need to come in. No, no, Kelly, they are too far. I'll go get them. This isn't right." Kelly laughed, waved at the girls and...
Sam stood up. The water reached her waist. There's a huge sandbar that goes out for a million miles. Kelly's still laughing. It took six years off my life.


The next day was Meg's birthday, so I stayed up into the night with Kelly, (I have cut the wine bottle out of this picture that you won't think less of me) knitting the red poncho like a fiend and casting myself into the abyss of fringe. My hair is fairly large.


Meg loved it, and I got her to stop bouncing on the trampoline (in her styling blue satin pajama bottoms) long enough to get this picture.


Yarn is the much beloved (and sadly discontinued) "Mexican Wave", the pattern is the "very harlot poncho" given on this very blog, with a couple of eyelet rows thrown in. Meg has worn in every day (except the bike trip) since then. This is discouraging when her outfit is green, but I'm glad she likes it.

The next morning "Team Harlot" left Cape Breton and took another ferry from Nova Scotia to PEI, found our styling campground and began our bike trip. Five days of cycling around PEI carrying our camping stuff and clothes on our bikes, seeing the world, the wind in our hair.


That's a rare flat bit near Cavendish...and that's the family riding away. During the bike trip the socks saw something that got them all excited.


I swear to you with all of my wool that I really thought that lobster flavoured potato chips would be good. All the best that PEI has to offer, you know? Ken and Joe looked at me like I had finally lost my ability to conceal my insanity as I snapped them up gleefully in the grocery store. That evening by the campfire I opened them and happily popped one in my mouth.
I don't know what I was thinking. In the interest of politeness, lets just say that the chips let me down. Way down. Down like I think I might rather briefly lick a wet dog than put another one of those chips in my mouth. It's not that they are bad. It's that they are....inexplicable.

We got to Green Gables, and the sock was thrilled to discover fibre content. There was the Green Gables spinning wheel:


the Green Gables swift and skein winder:


and the prettiest little basket of Green Gables knitting.


(For anyone who is thinking what I was...Yes. I did let them know that a real knitter would never put carders in with their knitting. I mean, for crying out loud people, let's think a little. I spoke to them about snagged stitches and fuzzed yarn. I think they understood.)

It was a little crowded there, and I had my first real hint that people in PEI might also feel that taking many pictures of a sock posing with various historical artifacts and items of Canadian significance could mean that you were a few elves short of an effective workshop...if you catch my meaning. Joe, who's arm graciously appears in these photos kept struggling to explain. "Steph knits, and we take this sock places and...Steph takes their picture with cool stuff...because...she's a yarn harlot, and some other knitters care about this picture of the sock, she took it to Prince too......."

It was the evening that we camped at Cavendish that the following tragedy occurred. I was wearing a retractable headlamp to give me light to put up the tents, when I was called to dinner. Without thinking, I pulled the headlamp up over my head. The retractable strap retracted, taking a fair bit of my unruly hair with it. I stood there in the dark, desperately trying to free myself before I had to admit to my family that I had managed to adhere a freaking lamp to my head. It didn't work, and eventually I had to admit defeat. Ken cut me free. (It is impossible to tell if I am laughing or crying in this photo. I didn't know which it was at the time either, though everyone else was definitely laughing. Especially Megan, who (thanks so much Meg) found the camera and took this shot.) I'm so elegant it hurts.


Saturday we returned to civilization, with Ken and Joe driving back across the Confederation Bridge, and the girls and I returning to Cape Breton. Kelly got her Birthday Poncho,


1 skein Fleece Artist "Curly locks", using the Very Harlot Poncho pattern again, this time without the fringe. 9mm needle.

and I got to go to Baadeck yarns. That trip is getting it's whole own day.
Want a hint?


Posted by Stephanie at August 27, 2004 11:03 AM