Saturday, August 14, 2010
Now that's a loom, eh?
Today, Jing and I took an adventure to Maryland to pick up a loom that she found for sale online on Ebay.
What an incredible day we had.
First. Let me just say that Jing was more than excited to find this loom used and in such good condition. She has been obsessing about this particular floor loom since she saw it. Brand new, it's very expensive. ( I have to add that even used, it's more than many used cars!)
Second. Traveling to a new place is always a fun time. And it was a nice morning for traveling. Not too humid or hot, which is always a concern in August on the east coast.
Jing took her knitting along while I drove our SUV. Everytime I visit with her I learn more about how interesting a life other people have. As a pediatric eye surgeon, we discussed everything from her excitement of medicine, interesting cases, to the current hardships of so many with lack of medical coverage, the state of insurance industry, and the pressures it has placed on practice of medicine.
Third. And Most Impressive. The folks Jing bought the loom from - Absolutely Delightful. Wattenmakers. True Artisans. Their house was filled with wonderful antiques...tapestries, ironworks, furniture. A showcase.
After taking the loom apart and loading it into the car, we sat and chatted for a little bit with them, drinking mint tea and eating crystallized ginger.
Besides being happy to free up some space on her porch, she said that she was never able to take full advantage of the loom. She was happy to be passing it onto someone with a passion for the craft.
She inherited the love for weaving from her mother, but never mastered the art to the level that her mother had. She showed us a couple of linen tablecloths and a wall hanging that her mother had made. They were amazing. Each very different. Each a wonderful heirloom and treasure.
I loved visiting with them. We learned so much about their life in the short hour or so we spent chatting.
They met studying at the Barnes Foundation in the sixties.
He is an author of several books founded at the Barnes and showed us his most recent publication ... that had just arrived only days ago from the publisher!
You can see it here:
American Paintings and Works on Paper in the Barnes Foundation
They have a wonderful retirement. I can only fantasize for something as unique and exciting. They live 6 months in the US (in Maryland) and 6 months in the south of France in a very quaint, small town, where cows, sheep, and other small farm animals herd regularly through the town on their way to market (by foot). The cuisine is just as you could imagine and the French are just as adamant about the preparations and selected ingredients as the stereotype suggests. The town is welcoming, inviting, and simple.
He claims luck for being able to find such a unique homestead abroad where the locals have now adopted them fully into their community. They share great friendships and entertainment.
They love the balance of life that the contrasting regions bring them.
After stepping back into our world, Jing and I went to Chesapeake City where we visited a treasure of a fiber source - the Vulcan's Rest Fibers. Then over to the Bayard House on waterfront for a late lunch.