All went well.
Start with the big one:
is a brilliant teacher, as several of you had told me. Not for him (although he
might so easily have adopted it) the role he describes in his wonderful essay
for Knitty, “The
Ten Knitters You Meet in Hell”: Franklin
“The Divine Presence: She considers eighty dollars a bargain price for the opportunity to spend three hours just being in the same room with her. Offering actual instruction would be overkill. Instead, she may proffer extempore, colorful anecdotes from her fabulous life; or perhaps an “inspirational” slide show of her immortal designs—the patterns for which are (of course) for sale from her booth in the marketplace.”
The lessons were meticulously planned and timed. I learned a lot. It was a small class – seven of us, and Franklin. Interesting women, with things to say. He was brilliant at contributing to the conversation without being overbearing, and then getting back to the point.
I had my camera with me – I had even put in new batteries that morning, although the camera hadn’t asked for them. It’s heavy on batteries, and I didn’t want to take any chances. But when the moment came, at the end of the day, it was too embarrassing, I couldn’t ask.
said he wanted to have his picture taken with me – leaving everyone else to
wonder, for an instant, whether perhaps I were Jane Sowerby. I think the picture
on his great big camera is perhaps slightly better than mine, seen above, taken a few
seconds later, in which I look hysterical. Franklin
Other aspects of the weekend were equally successful. I managed
on my own, although it was scary. One particularly sweet moment occurred on
Sunday morning, when I emerged from the tube station at the Angel, Islington,
wondering somewhat whether I would in fact be able to find the venue. London
And there, just beyond the barrier, miraculously, was Shandy. “Are you Jean?” We had a grand time together, including our lunch at The Elk in the Woods which would have gone on all afternoon, if I hadn’t had to get back for the afternoon class.
Shandy did only the morning session with
so she had time to have a serious look at
Loop later on. I missed out on that – they didn’t let us in until just
before the lesson, and were closed when it was all over. It’s a seriously
wonderful shop, that much was clear. Maybe one day I’ll get back there.
(On-line is great, but there’s nothing like an actual fondle.)
And all went well at this end. Indeed, it suddenly began to seem easy as soon as Rachel turned up on the doorstep on Friday evening. My husband has clearly very much enjoyed the company of his nearest and dearest other-than-me. The dining room pictures are hanging, and look good. The food from Cook was distinctly successful. My husband had a nap on Saturday afternoon while everyone else went off to watch the rugby in a pub.