Monday, May 18, 2009

A Seredipitous weekend

On Sunday, I had the great pleasure of meeting an old online friend. It was one of those kind of last-minute scrambles, but when we discovered that there was a very small window of opportunity where we would be within five hours drive from each other, I jumped at the chance to finally meet in person. My very great mate Donna came as well, to make a trio.

And so, yesterday, I made a whirlwind trip to the Nation's Capital. I'm not that familiar with Canberra, but I do know that I've had a few pleasant lunches at Hudson's Cafe in the Botanic Gardens, so I suggested we meet there. It was very busy! Seems to be a popular place for families to get together for Sunday brunch. But we found each other, and we found a table, and we sat down and the next thing I knew, two hours had flown past.

Co-incidentally, the Celebration of Wool day was on at the Old Bus Depot markets so
after lunch we headed off over there. I really enjoyed it; for a start there was lots of silk there!

I only bought one thing though, a skein of 60/2 laceweight silk from Glenora Weaving. Both Donna and Jacqueline bought some zackly same. I think it'll be fun to see what we all make out of it. But let's say that again; 2 ply yarn - 60 wraps per inch - 3000 metres. It's insanity really when you think of it like that.

I love Christine from Glenora, I met her on the way to Bendigo last year and our paths have crossed a few times since then - always many many miles from home. Ironically, her business is a mere 30 mins down the road from me - but such is the nature of fibrey gatherings, they're always a hike to get to for me. She's got such a vibrancy about her, she's very friendly (and how hard would it be to keep that up on a market stall all weekend?), and I really like her style. She had a lot of gorgeous yarns on her stall at the weekend, including some incredibly alpaca silk laceweights in magnificent handpainted colours.

The other standout for me was the very good looking youngish farmer from Tarndwarncoort Farm, where they breed Australia's only home-bred wool sheep, the Polwarth. I know someone who won a holiday at their farm at the Bendigo show the year before last, and they have nothing but praise for the Farmstay Cottages (weekend away anyone?). The cutest thing about these Polwarth sheep is that they put little coats on them so the wool stays clean and soft. Isn't that just the duckiest thing?

Jacqueline suggested that the coats should be pretty colours. I think she may have been flirting with the farmer. He seemed to be liking it too.

Incidentally, I notice that Bells and Kylie liked the same things - I think I would have bought that purple laceweight that Bells got if it still had have been there an hour later!

After we did the rounds in a leisurely fashion, we stopped for some mulled wine - while they packed up around us. That mulled wine was mighty fine - I'd still be there probably if the place wasn't closing.

We said our goodbyes, and headed in opposite directions.

Man, didn't Canberra turn on her crisp crystal sunshiney charm for us? The place was glittering with that gorgeous autumn light and not a cloud in the sky. A really beautiful day. I could move there tomorrow.

On the way home we stopped at the Big Merino. If I was a rich woman I would now be the owner of several wool/possum blend garments from NZ, and a white sheepskin jacket. They have got some lovely woollies in that sheep, let me tell you. And it's the real deal too.

Everyone posts a picture of it's good side. I was suprised to see the detail on the other side. My son thought this angle was hilarious.


Rose Red said...

Meeting up with blog friends is, for me, the most unexpected upside of blogging. Sounds like a great day.

Love the Big Merino shots!!

Melissa said...

Sounds like a wonderful day with wonderful friends.

dr k said...

hmm i have never been round that end of the big merino. i wonder why? it seems great minds think alike re all things fibrey! sorry we missed you tho!

Anonymous said...

Looks wonderful!

Bells said...

so bummed I missed you guys. I'd heard talk of a visit but wasn't sure and by the time I left, I was buggered.

That last photo of the merino!!! *snigger*

jacqueline said...

What can I say...he was a cute farmer ...abeit probably a little young but hell I'm not that fussy ;-)

I had an absolutely smashing day on Sunday and really enjoyed myself. I am already looking forward to our next catch-up....whenever that may be.

Charmaine said...

Sounds like you had a great day Ailsa! I love Canberra too. The Bus Depot Markets are a winner!