Knitting Out and About

One of the nicest things about having been on leave for nearly a month (yes, it’s coming to an end, but not just yet) is that I’ve done an awful lot of knitting out and about. We’ve had periods of hermit-life, and more than a little gadding about.

Let’s be clear. Gadding about, for us, involves many hours spent sitting together in cafes and pubs. Lest anyone should get images of crowded pubs on a Friday night with me jostling for space to get a few rows completed, banish those thoughts. We’re talking quiet afternoons before the rowdy punters arrive. That’s my kind of pub outing.

And when we’re not in pubs (one can’t live on beer alone) we’re in cafes.

Side note: I remember many years ago watching a couple sit together in a restaurant reading books. I thought it was incredibly odd and wondered if they had nothing to talk about. Many years later and over a decade of being in a relationship I realise that actually sitting together in silence, both engaged in your own pursuit is actually really nice. Invariably, I’ll be knitting and Sean will be on his iPhone or iPad, or reading a book and we sip coffee (him) and tea (me) and may well not speak for some time, except in passing. It’s lovely!

I’m reminded of that scene from When Harry Met Sally when they both agree how wonderful it is to sit and not have to speak. When life is full of so many moments where speaking is unavoidable, comfortable silence is an absolute treasure and a place I’m altogether happy to retreat into just about any time.

While out and about with my needles, I’ve taken to snapping pictures of what I’m working on. It’s a nice visual record of how I’ve spent my idle time in cafes and pubs while on leave. There’s no need to show you every photo because often it’s the same project, just a different table on a different day.

This is my current not-socks project. Knotty Gloves. They’ve had a bit of a troubled life so far. I’ll write about them later. This photo was taken in the Braidwood Royal Mail Hotel a couple of weeks ago. I love how even though the pattern is on the ipad, it’s not immediately obvious from the photo.

Cafe Knitting 3

Next, it’s my current easy knitting project. The Wool Peddler’s Shawl, from Folk Shawls, made from Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool.

Cafe knitting 2

I’m not sure where I took this. We were having coffee somewhere a few days ago. I think it might have been out in Bungendore.

Finally, today, I was working on my Icarus shawl, which has been a little neglected. But I worked on her for a little while today and got back into a groove.

Cafe knitting 1

I think when I go back to work (Sean goes back this week) I’m going to really miss our hours spent being quiet in public. I think my knitting output is going to suffer, too.



16 thoughts on “Knitting Out and About

  1. There’s nothing like productive, comfortable silence. It’s a nice feeling knowing that every moment doesn’t have to be filled with talking and/or noise.

    What app are you using to store your PDF patterns on your iPad? GoodReader?

    • I use GoodReader on the iphone but have been using ibooks – just importing the pdfs into it. But I’ve been meaning to check out goodreader for the ipad.

  2. We hardly ever go out for a coffee, I must start a new routine of doing that! Love your photos Bells. All the knits are going to look lovely.

  3. One of my parents friends, who has been married for 40+ years, once told me that he knew he’d met ‘the one’ when they were able to sit comfortably in silence. I’d forgotten that conversation until this post, but he was absolutely right. It’s not always necessary to fill the air with words.

  4. Silence is highly under rated, esp among friends. I know I’m comfortable with someone when I don’t have to talk all the time. it sounds like you are both getting a lot out of your time off together. love the red silky wool!

  5. Hey Bells,
    Where did you buy the book on shawls? Was it Amazon? I really need to buy it! It looks fabulous -I love reading about the history of knitting and shawls!
    I too love knitting in public. My hubby and I recently were waiting for our teenaged girls to come out of the movies and sat in a cafe, where we both read our books, barely speaking the whole time! It was heaven. I think it is a deeper level of love in a relationship when being together involves enjoying doing things individually.

  6. Sounds lovely, I know just what you mean – I love it when me and the Mr go out for brunch and read the papers/knit – must do that this Sunday.

    Love Willem’s jacket from the last post

  7. These sound like dreamy afternoons, Bells! I’m so envious! It’s what I imagine when I think of doing whatever it is I want with my day – an afternoon in a pub with someone who didn’t NEED to talk. How are you liking the Silky Wool? I’m finishing up a Peasy with it (I’ve also made a tangled yoke) and have to say, it’s one of my faves! Love that red, too!

  8. Those quiet times, enjoying the day, talking or not, completely relaxed…could there be anything better?

    Loving the look of all your knitting, Bells…I have a friend whom I recently taught to knit socks. She said “my husband is really going to hate this!” I asked why, and she said “he hates anything that takes my attention away from him.” Could you imagine anything worse?!!!

  9. I think there’s a time for companionable silence and a time for chat. The trick is finding someone who knows when each is required!! Oh a nice selection of knitted things, I’m interested in your gloves. I have knitted two fingers (maybe that has some significance) and they have just stalled!!

  10. I remember being on a date with my future husband and noticing an older (than us; certainly not old) couple at another table, methodically eating and not saying a word. I wondered if that was the inevitable outcome. Happy to say it’s not. Also happy to say we talk about more than who’s getting V to soccer practice this week and will you please take out the trash already?! But of course, we spend lots of time with only occasional talk while he’s working in the evenings and I’m knitting or hand-sewing. It’s nice to have both.

  11. We often sit in companionable silence too, although sometimes I wonder if we should talk more like other couples seem too, heh!

    Re pattern on iPad, how do you mark your row? It looks a bit like a pencil in the pic, but I’m not sure!! Or is there a thingy in the app that allows you to highlight the row easily?

    • we have hours of talking – the silence is only when we’re otherwise engaged in things. We talk at home lots.

      I’m not marking the rows on the ipad. If it’s really complex I’ll use paper – but the cable pattern hasn’t really needed it so far.

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