I hadn't anticipated having such a good time with the Whatcom Weaver's Guild last night. I mean, I'm not a weaver*. And it had been many months since I'd given a crochet talk. And would the weavers be interested in a crochet talk? I mean, I wasn't worried about it, I just, well, I wasn't really sure what to expect.
Surprise the first: It felt amazing to be amongst my people. Yarn people. It had been a long time, and I hadn't even realized I missed them. I'm not sure the guild in Bellingham knows how special it is. There were, like, 50 or 60 people there, on a holiday! And most of them didn't go to see me, they just went to their monthly guild meeting. There wasn't an unfriendly face in the bunch. Sitting with them during their meeting I felt like I'd always been there. Insert cliches of warmth and fuzziness here.
Surprise the second: We had a lovely and lively discussion. This is like the holy grail for people like me, who go around speaking to groups. It's rare to get a crowd that big for a crochet talk. Most of the groups I've spoken to on book tours have been less than a third that size. You need a critical mass to have a good discussion, and it made my insides dance with glee when people spoke up and shared their thoughts and questions. Usually I have to fall back on talking a lot and waving my arms about (not that I didn't do a lot of that, too).
Surprise the third: Even though there was a huge wait at the border on the way home, I would totally go back to a guild meeting in Bellingham on a Wednesday night. Even though I feel hungover this morning for no reason other than that apparently this is how people in their 30s feel when they've stayed out too late on a work night.
I'll tell you what doesn't surprise me, now that it's the morning after. The morning after the surprises, it makes perfect sense to me that I feel happy after reconnecting with my community. My pendulum is swinging back to a comfortable central place, where I have my work and I have my play and I have my creativity and I have my crafts and I have my people. The people being the most important part, just as they've always been.
So thank you, weavers and crocheters and knitters and spinners of Whatcom County. You have given me a beautiful gift.
A final note. Here are some links related to things we talked about (please leave a comment to remind me if I've forgotten anything):
- Crochet Me (I forgot to mention in all my blathering that I no longer run the site, Interweave does. I still blog there and I still think it's an incredible community)
- Ravelry (You have to join in order to see the wonderfulness.)
- Seraphina's Shawl (The pattern I made my grey shawl from. It's also a great example of how tutorials can help attract people to a pattern/project/website/etc.)
* I totally want to learn how to weave.