Go Kristine!
Saturday April 07th 2007, 8:37 pm
Filed under: Knit,Knitting a Gift,Spinning

When our kids, who are 19, 21, 23 in June, and 25 next week, were growing up, any trip to the Urgent Care center at our clinic or the ER came with the bonus of their daddy taking them to the local ice cream shop on the way home for comfort: what Richard calls his own “Emergency Room Medicine.”

We have in our immediate neighborhood a shop, Rick’s, which is a hole-in-the-wall place that manufactures its own ice cream right there and which is a popular local summer hanging-out place. When the old fellow who’d run it for decades retired, the guy who bought it painted cows on the walls and ivy coming from the ceiling morphing into silk ivy coming out of the walls; it was very charming, but one day, I thought, you know? That main cow there needed a tail.

I had some yak hair. Not the soft, cashmere-y undercoat; yak hair. Wretched stuff, rips the skin off your fingers if you spin it too long at the wheel, won’t feed through the flyer without a struggle. When my oldest and I took handspinning classes together when she was 12, the teacher showed us some of this stuff, and I wrinkled my nose and went, wow. What would you ever DO with this stuff?

“Make a doormat,” Karen laughed in response. You know? That was just weird enough that I bought a pound of it against my better judgment, spun it up–although, not too much at any one sitting–and made exactly that. But there was leftover fiber (um, fancy that. It was a really small doormat. It was all I could stand.)

And then I saw that cow. And I knew exactly what I was going to do with that yak. I braided the roving (you don’t have to spin it if you leave it as roving!) and gave it to the guy so his cow could have a tail. I left a nice curl of the long fibers at the end, very cow-y.

The guy loved it, he absolutely loved it. He thought long and hard about it and never did add it to the decorations: he was afraid little kids would tear it apart. He’s right, they would have, but they would certainly have remembered the place and bugged their parents to go there all the more often, and I could always make another one. But instead he took it home as a souvenir of the good people who come into his shop, and that was that.

One summer, our Sam, our oldest, went in there, and mentioned out loud that she was thinking of applying for a job there.

The guy refused to hand her an application. He simply hired her on the spot.

But her schedule was such a problem!

He didn’t care.

But she couldn’t come in at this time, or this day, or…

He didn’t care. When could she start?

And so she scooped cones, and, a short while later, I made that tail.

She’s our daughter who had the ITP scare last week. I mentioned the Emergency Room Medicine thing to my friend and reader Kristine across the country, who happens to live a few miles from Sam but had never met her. Kristine’s reaction was, Say no more! What flavor?

Which is how my son-in-law came to open his door today to see a woman standing there holding out some Ben and Jerry’s, and he stood there, jaw on the ground, exclaiming, Do we even KNOW you?

Okay, I should stop and let Kristine tell the tale, but I have to tell you, she totally rocks. THANK you, Kristine!

11 Comments so far
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Great story, I really enjoy reading your blog.

Comment by Amanda1 04.08.07 @ 5:40 am

Way to make me blush, or something. 🙂

Comment by Kristine 04.08.07 @ 1:01 pm

Thank you. I have the nicest friends!

Comment by AlisonH 04.08.07 @ 4:33 pm

One of my favorite jobs was scooping ice cream. I even met my husband there and that is definitely a good thing!

Comment by Lisa 04.08.07 @ 7:02 pm

I spent summers scooping ice cream too. Every night when I got home my dog would lick my arms from wrist to elbow. Ice cream can always make you feel good.

Comment by Sonya 04.08.07 @ 9:06 pm

Blogger’s got a bug affecting comments, I have no idea how that one got deleted, I never even saw it, whatever it said. Anyway–scooping ice cream is a happy-making job, isn’t it.

We had one time our littlest got stitches at about six years old, my hubby pulled up at Rick’s on the way home, warning, I think they’re closed, John. And they were. But the owner was still there, sweeping, and when the man saw John’s sad face pressed against the window, he said, aw, c’mon in, kid, and scooped him a scoop to help him feel better.

The place has been sold again since Jennie worked there, but I like to think it’s still a strong part of the neighborhood. Guess I better go in then, huh? See if the cows are still there? I think the only requisite stitches first, though, will be the ones on my needles.

Comment by AlisonH 04.08.07 @ 10:44 pm

Three hoorays for Kristine!

Comment by Karin 04.09.07 @ 5:08 pm

What wonderful friend! People like that are not just friends, they are family. I remember those E.R. trips, we have 4 also born in 81, 83, 85 &86. We just about had a monthly standing appt in the E.R. I had to take one of my nieces in once and the staff asked, “just how many children do you have”?! It was too funny. Little did they know we had about 8 living with us at the time. Again, thanks for sharing and bringing up good memories, God Bless Katie

Comment by Katie 06.05.08 @ 10:00 pm

Amazing Kristine! Don’t you just love reading her blog.

Comment by Joansie 07.17.08 @ 12:03 pm

[…] Karin, who gifted me with the black baby alpaca that became my friend Amy’s shawl, holding Lucy, and Kristine, Lucy’s mother, who took Jennie some Ben and Jerry’s emergency room medicine. […]

Pingback by SpinDyeKnit 11.19.08 @ 4:23 pm

[…] friend Kristine, whom some of you may remember from here and whom I first met when she lived in San Jose before she moved home to Vermont, lived and wrote […]

Pingback by SpinDyeKnit 04.28.09 @ 8:53 pm

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