Two weeks ago, my girls were here for MS&W. I'm just now posting about it. Better late than never, right?
It was a wonderful weekend all around. Spending time with the girls is always wonderful and it made my heart so happy and my spirit at ease. It is that sisterly bond we have, making it possible to always pick up right where we left off the last time we were together, whether it has been weeks, months, or more than a year. I must say that we were a bit reserved during this visit, not as silly or zany as usual. But there was this aura of calmness and contentment which we all seemed to put forth. A respite from our hectic and unpredictable lives, we basked in the zen energy of all being together.
Oh, and the beer was really good, too. :)
So - onto some less existential details and some photos:
We went to the festival early Saturday morning. It was overcast and there seemed to be a haze surrounding the fairgrounds.
It was about 8:15 am when we got there and we were surprised to see that The Fold was already open for business. It seems that vendors are required to be open by 9am but they can open earlier if they want. We, instead, decided to tough it out in the t-shirt line. And it was as long and as disorganzied as ever.
If I didn't enjoy going to the festival so much I'd volunteer to get the t-shirt operations under control and efficient. EGADS! we were in line for almost TWO HOURS!! Was it worth it? Yes, because we didn't have to pay for shipping. Plus, as we were waiting in line, the Queen had a chance to check out some vendors and she bought me this t-shirt:
I absolutely LOVE IT! A political statement with sheep humor - how could you not love it? (Well, I guess if Obama isn't your candidate of choice, you wouldn't.) The gift was really too generous as she had already given me some fabulous hand-made dishcloths - which go perfectly with my kitchen.
After the hellish t-shirt line, we walked around and did some shopping and took some photos (click to enlarge):
And one of my favorite photos - Lamb Booty
We also made the walk down to the Rabbit Barn for the Ravelry meet-up. It was another mob fest and not very organized. But unlike the t-shirt line with people who should know what kinds of crowds to expect, I doubt the Ravelry people knew just how many of us would show up. We stood in line to get our Ravelry avatar stickers and a button. I think it took like 40 minutes to get them but it was worth it. Ain't it cute?
While we wore them all day, I didn't have anyone come up and say hello. But I didn't say hello to anyone either, so I can't complain.
So how much yarn did I buy this year? Believe or not, I was uber restrained in my purchasing. I only bought two skeins of yarn. TWO SKEINS - and yes, I'm as shocked as you are. Here's my fiber - Acero from Brooks Farm:
This photo shows me already using it to make the BUBBLES bubbles wrap (pattern also bought at Brooks Farm). The Mistress and I are both making this shawl and it's been fun to knit it with her long-distance.
I also bought a painting - just a print of painting and it's on the small side but I love it. From Charisma Art Gallery and artist Conni Tögel, this print is entitled "Happiness" and it makes me smile when I look at it.
Once I get it framed, it will be hung in my craft room. And if I have more money next year, I may splurge on a larger print to add to the wall.
If you didn't go to the festival, I'm sure you heard here on the web and blogosphere of the thefts and vandalism that occurred at the festival. A shawl from Brooks Farm was stolen, booths in the main barn were broken into (cash registers pried open and yarn and merchandise stolen), and the pens of many animals were opened to let them run around the fairgrounds.
The innocence of the festival is gone. It will be forever changed and that saddens me to the core.
From this festival on, cheerful smiles and warm welcomes will be tainted with accusatory looks and anticipatory tension. Is she just looking at that yarn? Or is she scoping the booth? Did she just put something in her bag? Did she pay for that? Or just walk away from the booth? Where's my wallet?
So was this vandalism and thievery done out of desperation? Is the economy so far in the crapper that the high prices for gas and food drove some poor fiber enthusiast to do the worst? Or is it a case of bored teenagers causing trouble and trying to make some money? Or had some opportunistic robbers stumbled upon what they considered an easy target?
What I do know is that at next year's festival, the fiber community will be on high alert to anything they see at the festival. Just like the neighborhood crime watches that communities put together, we'll all be looking out for trouble or things gone awry in order to stop such a thing from happening again. Be afraid. Be very afraid, you would-be fiber thieves! We'll find you!!!
For a more complete review of MS&W 2008, check out one by Knitter's Review here.
I posted before of the emptiness and sadness when the festival ended and my girls went back home. But I don't want to end on a sad note. For I am already looking forward to next year when we'll all be together again and we will make the trek out to the fairgrounds for fiber goodness.
I leave you with one last photo - this one is of Senor Sheep. Who thought a stuffed sheep and a stick-on moustache would result in such high comedy?
Only 50 weeks until MS&W 2009!!!