The 10 Year Old Afghan

(By which I am not refering to a chlld from Jalalibad!)

In 1996 working for the American Red Cross during a hurricane, I slipt and fell down a flight of exterior stairs, ending up with four torn ligaments in my ankle.  As you can imagine, I was laid up for quite some time.  Knowing I'd be spending a lot of time in bed with the foot elevated, I had the Best Beloved (1) move the tv upstairs to the bedroom and (2) go buy me a lot of worsted weight yarn, and I started work on the afghan pictured here (I imagine, 9child, that this is where I gained profenciency in knitting and watching TV!).  In time, my ankle healed, and the unfinished afghan got stuffed into a bag.

The next year it made the move, still in the bag, from NY to Washington DC, then continued to move over the course of several years from rental to rental, finally ending up in the cedar closet of the house we bought three years ago.  Occassionally, I would take it out, wonder if I had enough yarn to finish it, and if not, wonder what kind of yarn I had actually used (oops - ok, I'm not a good note keeper), then, put it back in the bag.

Over the holiday season this year, I took it out, cut a sample of yarn off, and went to the yarn store.  Two skeins and one long car trip later, I am pleased to announce that it is finally finished!  I made it without a pattern, knitting it on the bias (on the diagonal) in garter stitch with a simple stripe pattern.  It turned out much larger than I anticipated, a very satisfying 5' X 7'.  I believe, but would not swear, that it is made using Lion Yarn's worsted weight Wool Ease, a 20/80 blend of wool and polyester (which I'm not completely happy with, being the natural fiber boy that I am, but it was affordable and turns out to be machine washable, which, after 10 years in a bag isn't such a bad thing).

The strangest thing, though... when I finally got back to work on it, I realzed that the dog hair that was on it was from one of our favorite dogs, Zoe, who used to curl up on the project, and a few months before leaving NY, got out of the house and was hit and killed by a train.  It was a bittersweet sensation having her presence unexpectedly pop up like this!

Waiting in DC for the snow storm to hit,


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Great!  That's what being a dedicated knitter is all about.  Sorry about Zoe; a sad but comforting reminder -  a canine equivalent of a letter from an old friend found in a drawer.  Thanks for including a reference about the snow storm hitting DC,  that means in three weeks we'll be getting bad weather in London! We always do.

drmel94's picture

Sunny skies in Maine at the moment, but the snow should be here along with gale-force winds right as I'm coming home from work tomorrow morning. Hope that afghan keeps you warm.

I still periodically find hair from departed pets in various places. Sad as the loss is, it's always good to have the memories. 

"Hatred does not end by hatred; hatred ends by love. This is the eternal law." - Buddha

ChazH's picture

Jonathan, Your post is synchronous for me because just the other day I was actually practicing knitting and watching TV at the same time! It didn't go well, but I'll eventually get the hang of it, I'm sure. ;-) Your realization about Zoe's hair evoked many memories for me. It's so powerful to have a physical reminder that is very personal. I know you'll treasure it forever now, if not before.