Sunday, October 21, 2007

Truck Stops. Who Knew?

As it turns out, rest areas are in fact well-used, probably for resting.  As least that's what I needed it for.

It all started with Oprah.  Hmm, no, it started at SOAR when Cindy told me that Nancy and Adriana were going to be in Chicago to be on Oprah.  Even though I'd just spent 11 hours each way driving to and from Bellaire, Michigan, I thought that five hours to and from Chicago to visit friends in from the left coast wasn't out of the question.  Saturday was out, given that I was teaching a 4-hour beading class at 11, but if I could get Friday off, I could leave Thursday after work, play with my friends all day Friday, and leave around dinnertime on Friday since they already had dinner obligations.

Hokay then.

I made great time on Thursday, found the hotel and Very Expensive Parking Garage ($35 for 9 hours or more) and we chattered until we were exhausted.  Beyond exhausted, actually.

Friday didn't turn out quite as we planned.  The person who had obtained the Oprah tickets was taking them (and I was tagging along) to the Botanic Gardens in the morning, and then we'd do yarn and bead store crawls in the afternoon.  Drink some coffee, eat chocolate, that sort of thing.   Turns out the Oprah connection, a realtor who claimed to Know Chicago but took more wrong turns than her Knowingness would imply that she ought to be allowed, was full of so much love that she had the whole DAY with us spoken for, and we were held hostage in her big black SUV.  

She thought that people who spin, knit, dye and bead for fun (let me emphasize that: FOR FUN) would just love to drive for an hour to shop where they sell geese in calico clothing and the like.  We did find a yarn store though, and I did snag me some more sock yarn (I will have socks for ever.  Even before this I was replete with sock yarn, but hey, who's counting anyway), and today, as I watched Pushing Daisies online (I love this idea.  It's like TiVo and a VCR with no planning!  I do wish they kept full episodes of ER though, as I was on I-55 when it aired), I started, well, socks, I mean, why not?

So, rest areas on the highway.

Due to the chattering and all, I didn't manage a whole lot of sleep on Thursday night, so the drive home on Friday got a little scary.  I received a very useful jolt of adrenaline that luckily lasted me until the next rest area, after I found myself drifting a little.  Fortunately there wasn't much traffic.

I always thought that rest areas were for sissy travellers with tiny bladders who weren't strong enough to last until the gas tank needed refilling, or for picnic lunches when there was no big hurry to reach a destination in lovely weather, but man, at 10 in the evening, you can't hardly move for the trucks.  I was a little nervous, y'know, woman alone in a Corolla, trying to sleep, surrounded by humungous vehicles, but I did make sure all the doors were locked before I reclined the seat.  The power nap was a lifesaver, probably literally.

Home again, and whoops! No instructions for tomorrow's class, still need to mix up the bread (I discovered batter bread, and I'm hooked), not to mention sleep.

I was only 15 minutes late for class (yes, I did call ahead to let my students know I was running behind), and my instructions were remarkably error-free, which is to say: none discovered on read-through, and none discovered in the four hours of teaching.

And oh whoops again: I'm expecting people for dinner, and except for the bread rising, I have no menu plan, no food, and NO TIME! And, uh, I think the grill is out of gas.

Eh, but here it is, Sunday night, I have leftovers in my fridge, my gas cannister has been refilled, I think my dinner guests are still my friends, and I even managed to teach another class today.

And I have the beginnings of a sock, and since I started it with nary a plan, now that my cuff is finished, I have to decide on a Stitch.  Garter rib?  Travelling something-or-another?  No lace, because lace in socks is weak and develops unintentional, not-the-pattern holes, at least in my experience it does.

I love starting socks this way: cast on some, knit until there are as many ridges as I will need stitches, cast off together with the cast-on edge and pick up stitches in the valleys between the ridges.  Purl a row.  Start something.

Yes.  Start Something.


Cathy said...

Hauling horses cross country meant stopping in nice big places. Truck stops and rest areas were wonderful. I can't count how many I've slept in. As a lone woman. In Sept to and from TN from CO.

Nice photo of you on fibergal fantasy's blog.

Anonymous said...

So no bead stores worth sharing? Darn, because you just know Chicago must have at least one.
Love the sock idea.

Charlene said...

Well, we did happen upon a bead store in Long Grove, but I didn't have time to assess it, as I just needed The One Thing. I really had been hoping to go to Caravan Beads, which I hear is quite impressive, but the, uh, entertainment precluded that, unfortunately. Not to worry though: means there's a reason for a yarn- and bead-store road trip in my future. Yeah!