Sunday, September 1, 2013

When We Venture Afield...

There are certain things that always happen when I travel:

1) I will seek out and eat peanut M&M's. This goes back to my childhood when I spent a lot of my summers in the back seat of the family car, driving all around North America. Peanut M&M's were one of my dad's driving treats to keep him going while driving for epic stretches of time. We used to buy them in the Target in Fargo, which was one of my family's regular destinations (and is a much nicer place with much more interesting people than the Coen brothers ever described). Now, when I spy them in a gift shop or gas station, my heart yearns for them, and I indulge in sweet memories.

2) I seek out green spaces, no matter where I am. This weekend, on short trip to the big city of Vancouver, I could not be there without finding a few trees amongst which to frolic. I want to be among Tolkien's Ents, wherever I go.

3) I will stop dead, often in mid-sentence, to photograph bits of nature, like this tree using this stump as a support. If you squint your eyes, it kind of looks like a skinny lizard with an incredibly long neck basking on the stump...

4) I will find something to fiddle with during the drive/flight/boat ride. Lately, it's been magazines and my new smartphone. This time, I ACTUALLY spent some time knitting.

This scarf has been in the works for just about a month now. I started it during the ferry ride on my last trip to Vancouver, en route to a wedding further inland. It's been languishing on my coffee table for the past few weeks, where it gets a row or two knitted onto it when I find the energy. This weekend, I finally pulled it out and spent some quality time on it.

It's really not based on any kind of pattern. I started it out using the stitch used in Arlene's Easy Lace Stole, thinking it would be a nice, mindless pattern to keep me trundling along. After a few inches, though, I remembered that mindless patterns drive me crazy, and I threw in a few stockinette squares along the way to keep my brain engaged.

I'm enjoying watching the colours emerge as I knit along. They make me think of the fallen leaves in the autumn that get mixed in the mud on the trails that I like to walk so often. There's something distinctly Canadian about this scarf. Perhaps it has something to do with it being a Fleece Artist yarn. Whatever it is, something about it feels like home...

Anyway, what little knitting I get in these days is still a blessing to me. I'm glad to have it for company during my little jaunts here and there. It's like the best little travel aid there is.

Oh, and something else that happens during travel: we all come home exhausted and glad to be home. Behold: the beast is demonstrating how we all feel right about now. Travel is fun, but home is always the best place to be.

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