When last we left our confused traveller, she was about to investigate LA. I had arrived at night, so when I woke up I looked out my window and discovered a world of wonders.
You may not be able to see it, but trust me, the sock and I could easily read the "Hollywood" sign from the hotel window. From the other window, I saw this.
There I was, standing in a hotel room, sun rising over Los Angeles, and I read the enormous sign on the building beneath me.
It reads The Knitting Factory. That whole big building (and the one next to it) was a yarn shop? The worlds largest yarn shop! Lit up with strobe lights and with limos out the front! What kind of wonderful place is LA! (and really, if there is a yarn shop this big on Hollywood, why am I going to the Knit Cafe?) I shoved on my shoes (and my clothes) grabbed my room key and my wallet and beat it outside. I raced across the street and pressed myself to the glass. It was closed. Closed, and sort of barren and yarnless.
Perplexed, I staggered back to the hotel and googled it. Had it been robbed? Burned out? Some sort of yarn tragedy we should all prepare for by buying all the yarn we can get? No. It's a club. A live music club with the incredibly misleading name "The Knitting Factory".
Cruel. (But it explains the publishers choice of venue.)
I went for a walk and found another bizarre mall.
I swear that in Toronto, mostly we just put a bunch of stores in a row with roofs over 'em. We don't put big arches or dancing elephants or that whole thing in San Diego with trapping people and confusing them with colour. (There was no yarn store in the mall).
I walked around some more. (It's the palm trees. They are gripping. I can't stop looking at them. I walked into a Stormtrooper outside of Grauman's Chinese Theatre because I was looking at a palm tree. I'll have you know that it costs $5 US to have your picture taken with a Stormtrooper. There is no discount for socks, even though they are much, much smaller than people. I draw the line at the sock incurring expenses.)
After I found my two favourite stars on the walk of fame, I went back to the hotel to knit.
Still loving shawls as the perfect trip knitting. This is "Summer in Kansas" in my recovered blue zephyr.
You can see Monika on the right there. She deserves special mention for being out of her ever-loving mind. She's wearing a really neat top, knit out of 13 strands of sewing thread held together. She alters what colours she's using gradually to achieve a shifting colourway across the top. I thought she was brilliant. A few sheep short of a flock, but brilliant. (How many spools of thread does that take?)
More peeps, including Julia and Mary Heather, and there were more bloggers afoot, (though I kinda jumped the gun and took the picture too soon...) Big shout outs to Kathy for the seriously kicking samosas, and to Ninjaknitter for the secret present that I loved (and used).
From LA, I fell into bed, briefly slept, then got up at the completely ungodly hour of 4:30AM to endure, navigate, pass through LAX airport, headed for San Francisco.
I love San Francisco. (Although all those hills? They are going to be screwed when the ice comes.) I was shepherded around by the incomparable Candi "Slick" Jensen. (A crocheter who's life's work appears to be to talk me out of my feelings toward it...You haven't lived until you've been in the car with a die hard knitter and a militant crocheter, ask Maggie...she lived it.) we saw very good stuff.
the worlds twistiest street....
Alcatraz, (the sock feels an affinity for Alcatraz that it can't explain. Probably brought on by being trapped in my purse for 20 states...)
and Artfibers. Where, as Rachael so eloquently put it, I may have fallen and swiped my mastercard on the way down. This place is....is....There are no words. I was breathless the whole time. The yarn is good. The people are nice, the yarn is....well. Mine now.
I'll show ya later. (Hint)
Rachael? Yup. The object of my most profound blog crush was there. If you have a blog crush on Rach, and are jealous that I met her, you should know that everything you are thinking about her is true and you should be jealous. She's funny, charming, pretty, smart.....I want to be Rachael when I grow up.
I even have to respect what she did to the sock. (It's what I would have done. Though I will guard the sock more carefully in the future. Poor thing. Defiled and humiliated. No wonder it bit Candi like that.)
Doesn't she look innocent?
The crowd at Stash was the best...
and the owner, Ellen is the most generous yarn shop owner in the world. She donated the proceeds from the bookbookbook for the day to Doctors without borders, making her a member of TSF of the highest order. The sock and I think she's simply the best. (I may have bruised the old mastercard in that shop too....) I'm going to make myself late if I list all the bloggers from there...so give a shout in the comments, will ya?
For now, I'm in Portland (which I'm pretty sure is in Oregon) desperately looking for something unwrinkled to wear to Powells in an hour. I like Portland too...though I did misplace the hotel for about an hour while I was out for a walk. I hope somebody finds me a pub tonight.