Sunday, June 3, 2018

Recording Stash and a Return to Oban

After the Edinburgh Yarn Festival, Cathy remained in Berwick for another week. She got some hiking in along the northeast coast of England and celebrated her 64th birthday. Unexpectedly, some other guests at the hostel surprised her with a little birthday cake in the evening. She was delighted, to say the least. 

She also spent some time organizing and categorizing all the yarn and other fiber she had accumulated so far on the journey. I think that was a good idea. She decided to ship most of it home to be held safe by her friend Emily on Vashon Island. It was taking a lot of room in her bag and she needed that room for me, because I had grown so much! Also, there was a chance she would forget what she got and where it was from by the time we get back to the States—which may be in another year or more! I swear, she just doesn’t know when to quit all this roaming around! But I’m not complaining—I am meeting lots of great knitters and spinners! 

She did a pretty good job of making up sample cards for each purchase and taping them in her journal—I thought that was an excellent idea! 

She also photographed some hats she had made while traveling. These would go back to Ireland to await our return there. They had been made from wool she bought in Ireland. 

On March 24, we returned to Oban. We would use that as a base for traveling to the Isle of Iona and the Outer Hebrides. Cathy snagged a train ticket to take us all the way across Scotland. When she first started our reservation, it looked like the ticket was going to cost over £40, but Cathy has learned that sometimes if you buy each segment of the journey separately, you get a better fare. She got our ticket down to £13! Nice job!

We settled into our same room in the Oban Youth Hostel as usual…with the bay window overlooking the comings and goings of the ferries. And a couple days later, a funny thing happened…

The room we were in was designated a women’s dorm and it had six beds. We never know when another traveler will show up. Cathy was working at the little table by the window when she noticed from the window a big bus disgorging young people. This would probably mean we would be getting new roommates tonight. Since she just had on her tights and a sweater, she decided it might be nice if she greeted any new arrivals more properly dressed, so she put on a skirt. Imagine her surprise when seven (count ‘em SEVEN) cute young college men walked into the room. Imagine THEIR surprise. She laughed and quipped, “I think reception made a mistake, this is a female dorm. Besides, there are only six beds, so unless one of you is sleeping with me…” They laughed nervously, some blushing, and the last one in the door took the opportunity to leave by saying he would go down and “check on it.” Cathy told them she was sure they would be moving to another room and then began to chat with the remaining six. She managed to get in her regular spiel about how she was looking for knitters. “Do any of you knit?” she asked. Five of them immediately turned to one and pointed, “Michael does—he’s always knitting; he has his knitting with him!” Sure enough, a grinning Michael pulled out a big ball of red yarn and knitting needles.
So, Cathy pulled me out! All their eyes about bugged out of their heads. Cathy told him that he just HAD to add some rows and Michael readily agreed to meet her down in the living room later. About that time, Ross, the receptionist from downstairs, came in and was wondering what Cathy was doing in room 104??? So, Cathy was actually the odd one out—she was the one who had to move. Never mind, she had found a knitter…Michael and Cathy ended up knitting together and talking for a couple hours that evening. Just think…they would have never met if seven male students had not “mistakenly” wandered into Cathy’s female dorm room.

Next stop: The Isle of Iona for Easter Weekend

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