My Knitting Club

Here it is, my 10 foot long scarf.

Today I attended my first knitting class. Pictured below, you can see my first creation, an unattractive, pine green scarf  made through a sort of finger-weaving technique. It’s about ten feet long and has yarn “pelos” sprouting all over. Apparently, I had to get my fingers acclimated to the whole process before I could undertake full-on knitting.

My knitting teacher is named Alvaro. Yes, he’s a man. Alvaro looks and dresses like Mr. Rogers but acts like Mr. Wilson from Dennis the Menace (thanks Roxie). He’s a cranky, sarcastic old curmudgeon and, apparently, and expert knitter, weaver, crocheter, and jeweler, who is highly specialized in Indian and Mexican techniques. My knitting class takes place in the six by six foot back room of a small yarn shop. There are five women in my class, all at least 30 years older than me. All the women were surprised to see someone so young-looking taking a knitting class, but appeared glad that I was recapturing old-time values. Once they found out I was living in Colombia largely as a result of having a Colombian boyfriend, they informed me I had “ruined my life.” Then they asked me how we met. Not wanting to lie, I informed them we met on the street. They didn’t like this fact much either.

There are several interesting characters among my fellow knitting students. Perhaps the star is Sara Linda.  Sara Linda is one of those bigger than life characters. If she were a literary character, she would be the loud but lovable and sassy neighbor who always wants to give you advice you never asked for. She has a perfect yellow-tinted cepillado and enjoys talking about her Polish-French-Canandian husband, who is definitely not Colombian. She is proud that she’s never worked and says enjoys doing home things like knitting sweaters, being on her building’s administrative board, and hanging out with her friends. Sara has lived in Russia, Canada, France, and the U.S and is currently trying to convince her Polish-French-Canadian, definitely non-Colombian husband to stay in Colombia after retirement.

There is another older woman who’s name I didn’t catch. She didn’t talk much and seemed quiet or sad, and at the end told us that her psychiatrist had encouraged her to take up knitting after her husband was killed by one of his employees. Another woman, who looks to be about 60 years old despite rocking a plaid, belted top and booty-tight jeans, was weaving an alpaca sweater for her husband. Lastly there was another woman (whose name I’ve also forgotten…) who was a bit apart from the group. She seemed to be the most talented among us.

I can’t wait for class next week. Hopefully I will be granted full permission to pick up the knitting needles.

Categories: Bogota, Colombia, Colombian culture, Trying New Things

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