Yesterday I was talking to a young vendor at Stitches about knitting lace and she said it wasn’t something she’d managed to get good at or do much of yet, but she wanted to (said wistfully).
I remembered feeling like that years ago before I learned how, myself. Well, hey, I happened to know a book that gave good how-to lace instructions and patterns–but I didn’t have a copy with me anymore at the end of the day. Leap into the aisle and wave your arms as I go by, I said, flag me down tomorrow and I’ll bring you one.
What I knew and did not explain well was the facial-memory brain problem and that I really meant how I’d said that. Oh, I’ll find her, I told myself.
I should have rehearsed over and over, The guy with the red beard. The guy with the red beard. The guy with the red beard. Because how many of those could there be? But I didn’t.
I spent hours today taking in every aisle across the entire convention floor, going past the 150 or so vendors, trying to find her and her husband again and coming up empty and wondering how on earth this could be. I did find lots of old friends I hadn’t seen the day before (and some I had) and vendors who had become such themselves, and that was all good. But I just couldn’t fathom leaving at the end of the day without finding that couple and it was actually getting to be a possibility.
I thought one woman might be her but she not only didn’t recognize me, I simply did not exist for her. That happens all the time when you’re down there in a scooter, although less so at Stitches than anywhere else.
Sympathetic friends asked me the name of the booth. I had no idea, but I knew it was on the left hand side near the end of a section and that they, um, sold yarn. (Hey, not everybody there did!)
Finally I realized that I simply was not going to succeed at this on my own. At all. Clearly. I couldn’t fathom leaving someone excited to learn something new at last and then abandoning them–so I did the sensible thing I should have started off with and offered up an inner prayer for help.
It wasn’t immediate, but pretty close: an old friend saw me and we exclaimed over each other and chatted awhile before I headed down this one aisle I was already on.
There at the end. Right there where I’d gone past I’m sure twice before. They were both in the booth and it was no longer crowded so I could actually see them both–and their delight in that moment at seeing me again. (Me: It IS you!) And so the Twisted Owl couple at long last got their book and she loved it and he loved that she was so happy.
I can’t wait to see them at next year’s show. And now I have the website and a photo to go by.
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