Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Knit slowly, knit fast

At a time when the daylight hours are waning, my perception of my current knitting project reflects my perception of the turning of the seasons. Each day, our sun is slowly dwindling away. The unfortunate clouds aggravate this process, emphasizing that sunlight is at a premium. The change is subtle, but persistent. Eventually, over the course of what seems a long time, the days shorten and the clouds clump up. The rare bright spot of sun is the only reminder that things have changed.

**Quick, the sun is out, get the camera and take a photo of the knitting!**


A few nights ago, I finished the first set of braids on this hat after days of purling in the round, a movement that seems so wrong, deliberately twisting two yarns around and around, then reversing the twist on the next round. Once I finished the first set of braids, I worked the little band of stockinette, knitting six rounds. I knit and watched a movie for what seemed a few minutes. When I looked at my counter to click it for the next round, I was startled to see that it read "6". Eep. I knit 6 rounds without noticing. What a shock, especially since I had looked forward to this knitting as I struggled through the six rounds of braids during the past three days. (OK, 9 rounds, counting the k1, p1 rounds that begin each braid.)

Because I have lived it before, I know that the lengthening of the days will repeat this time shortening experience. Once the sun begins to return, I will not notice it. The days lengthen steadily, but the process, taken for granted, is accelerated for me. In a month or so, I will look up in the late afternoon and think, "Hmph, the sun is still up. When did that happen?" It's like knitting stockinette in the round. I do it, but I'm oblivious to the process.

What would life be like if I lived it as though I were braiding? It would seem longer, but punishingly cruel. I'd struggle through each moment and yearn for the time when I'd be free of the tasks I'd undertaken. It is preferable, I think, to suddenly be struck by a change that happened gradually. At least my awakening is a sign that I was enjoying the time as it passed so quickly and that I found the going easy.

I enjoy the seasons as they pass, but don't want them linger too long. I'm happy that the Solstice is almost here.

The hat I'm knitting is from a relatively obscure pattern. Here's the link to the pattern on Ravelry for those who want a preview of the FO. I'll probably blog it again once I finish it, since I consider it a small milestone.

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