Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Loss and gain

Stonington, CT

Those who grew up before the Age of SPF and PABA often, as mature individuals, endure dermatological procedures that remove sun-damaged skin lest it morph into full-blown cancer. Such was H's lot this morning.  While he was being scraped, peeled, and stitched on the tenth floor of Rhode Island Hospital, the Knitting Goddess and I walked along the mighty Seekonk with our loyal companions, Brownie and Lola, discussing the merits of wool versus acrylic, a conversation prompted by my wearing of a pair of thirty-year-old acrylic mittens (knitted in an overall seed stitch by mother, who is late--to borrow a term from Mma Ramotswe), and KG's wearing of a pair of equally ancient acrylic gloves in a nordic pattern, inherited from an elderly relative.

KG maintains that acrylic garments can be as warmth-providing as wool. I disagree. To test our hypotheses, we have decided to knit two pairs of comparable mittens, hers in acrylic, mine in wool. We will engage an impartial scientist to measure the heat retention of said mittens as they are worn on a suitably cold winter day. I am sure you, gentle readers, will be as curious about the results as KG and I are. Stay tuned.

Shortly after our return from this bracing expedition, I was summonsed by H to bail him out of hospital hell. Then we were on our way to the River House, where four angry cats awaited, screaming for breakfast. H had come through his surgery stoically and with only one large bandage on his face. We decided to reward his fortitude with lunch in Stonington, Connecticut, a twenty-minute drive from our rural hideaway. Afterwards, we strolled to the water's edge. It was there that we encountered Owl.

He's about a foot high, five or six inches wide, and rather compact. Readers, you know my proclivity for homeless animals. There was no way I could leave him on the wharf, feathers ruffling in the wind. We scooped up the little beast and brought him home.

It turns out that he loves to watch me knit. This I discovered as we drove back and I, riding shotgun with Owl on my lap, picked up a rather lurid sock currently under construction and began to work. Owl nudged it with his beak and rubbed his head on the ball of yarn. When we arrived home, I put him in a basket with the almost-completed pair, and it was clear that he was in a state of avian bliss.

I promised to knit him a scarf from the leftovers.

Lola isn't certain how she feels about him.


  1. He kind of looks like your new cat Molly.

  2. I've always thought that cats and owls strongly resembled each other!

  3. I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS! You brought an owl home??? I am faint with jealousy!

  4. The Owl is beautiful. I would have done the same thing. I am sure the owl will have a good home. Are you going to give him/her a name?