Sunday, May 30, 2010

What a DAY!

Today my friend Sarah and I met up with my other friend Chrissy and her family at the Great Lakes Fiber Show in Wooster. This is the 15th annual show, but today is the first time I've gone. We had a fabulous time!

There are getting to be a lot of these fiber shows around - I'm not sure if there are more these days because knitting, spinning, etc. are getting more popular, or if I'm just noticing them because now I knit (and I've dabbled in spinning although I kicked the habit some years ago.) This show had a competition for handspun skeins of yarn, and for fleeces, and a sheep auction.

They also had VENDORS. Four barns full of vendors.

I went in with a certain budget in mind, and I came within fifteen dollars of staying inside it. I feel pretty proud of myself! Oddly enough I did not come home with a bunch of sock yarn; there were some really pretty skeins of it there but I ended up not buying any. What I did buy was two enormous skeins of worsted weight Corriedale from Briar Rose Fibers - enough for a sweater - in a lovely hand-dyed purple-and-goldy-brown combo. I'm going to make an Every Way Wrap, although I am going to change the cable section to something else because cabling? Not my favorite. Love the look, hate to do.

Now, I forgot my camera (KICKING MYSELF), but interesting sights included

* an entire wall of Createvely Dyed yarn - they had an ENORMOUS display.

* A number of adorable alpacas, all newly sheared, so their wooly heads looked like big lollipops on skinny curved sticks. A couple of them didn't mind being patted, although alpacas generally are shy and don't really like petting.

* An adventurous sheep who slipped his leash and ran off through the crowd. He was a black sheep, and maybe he felt he had to live up to it, but he (or she - I really couldn't tell; he was in swift motion) eluded one set of would-be captors by leaping five feet in the air and landing well beyond them. Then the idiot animal dashed into one of the vendor barns and was causing great consternation in there when somebody closed the sliding door we were watching through. I heard later that the sheep was caught and returned to captivity so someone must have grabbed it before it escaped to the other end of the barn. It strikes me that there is a reason Scripture refers to humankind as sheep a lot, and it isn't a compliment.

* An enormous ram being auctioned. I'm not that expert in sheep anatomy, but no way was that an udder.

* Some very cute sheep waiting for auction, who liked having their ears skritched. My skin liked their lanolin, too!

By the time we had seen all this I was tired and hungry and a bit fried by the sun - Chrissy (the well prepared Mom) had given me some sunscreen, but it was HOT today. Our group was too big to keep together; we kept peeling off and meeting back up with one another, but by early in the afternoon everyone was done. As in, stick a fork in me - I'm done!

We all went our separate ways. Sarah and I ate a late lunch at Matsos, a Wooster eatery we'd often gone to in our college days, and then we drove slowly up through campus toward home.

That's when it got weird. We stopped in the street in front of Wagner Hall, our old dorm where we roomed together, and were reminiscing about college, and then I went to pull away. I had the horrible sensation that something was wrong with the car, and there was this sort of suck-WHUMP sound. Turns out that I'd stopped the car with the left rear tire right on a big, gross road patch and when I went to drive off it pulled right out of the street and went with us. Naturally it couldn't fit through the wheel well, and there we were, gooped tight.

Sarah ran across the street where there was some decorative stonework, to try to find a flint hand-axe to scrape the tar off. She made some progress with the scraper but soon ended up pulling at it with her hands. I tried, too, and soon I was even further be-tarred than she was; I had it thickly plastered all over both hands, including over most of my fingertips and nails. Giving up on sanitation, I just pulled the worst of the goop off and dumped it back in the pothole it came from.

Now what could I do? I had to drive us out of there, but if I even touched my steering wheel, I was never letting go again. I probably should have looked for sand or dust - that's what Sarah did - but I had the bright idea of layering the tar with grass so I could touch my steering wheel without adhering to it. Green furry paws is what I ended up with, and to add insult to injury they were still tacky. I gripped the steering wheel around some paper and drove gingerly northward.

We decided to try the Speedway gas station on the North end of Wooster, hoping that they'd have some kind of solvent. At first they sprayed us with some kind of scrubbing-bubble cleanser, which helped a tiny bit, but it wasn't looking good. Then Sarah, who is still working in chemistry and who therefore has a more recent grasp of solubility and solvents than I do, had a brain wave and grabbed a bottle of fuel-injector cleaner, which worked like a DREAM! I have hands again!

For the rest of the evening I refuse to do anything more strenuous than push the button on the remote control. I deserve some rest, after my day of rest!


Bug's Mommy said..., that's quite a story. Our drive home consisted of ice cream and fish feeding. Maybe next time you guys should ride with us. But hey, at least no one got a holiday weekend speeding ticket.

The Unraveled Librarian said...

So nice to find another knitting librarian! Really enjoying reading so far. :)

I went to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival last month, and the amount of barns full of vendors was almost overwhelming. Not enough alpacas though, sadly.

Anonymous said...

Oh my! What a story! (still chuckling, tho of course how horrid for you to go through that, but...guffaw! I can't help it! OMG!) Thanks for the very vivid lesson in where not to park! :-) Sounds like the festival was really nifty; I'd have loved to see those sheared (shorn?) alpacas.