Knitting in the North

A discussion of knitting, family, home and other stuff.

Rough-ish Seas

You know, don't you, that when you go through a time of peaceful tranquility, that rough seas are soon to appear? We left Drumheller happy and relaxed, and headed off to Devon, which is a little town just south of Edmonton. We had reserved a campsite there, and I was looking forward to more camping, and more shopping. Disaster struck. We checked into the campground, and drove off to our site. And drove around. And drove around. On our third tour, we found it - a 12' x 15' scrap of grass crammed in between two motor homes. We might have been able to set up the tent trailer itself, although the awning of the monster beside us would have extended over our roof, but there was no where to park the truck. Very disheartening. There were no other spots available, so our money was refunded to us, and we drove off, not quite sure what to do next. We ended up at the west end of Edmonton, and decided to try for a hotel. We stopped at one - booked. Another - booked. A third - also booked, but they rang another inn that had a room for us, for the paltry sum of $190 a night. Yikes. In a fit of desperation, with crying baby and hot, grumpy children as motivators, we started to drive over there, when Stuart saw the Hilton. He stopped. I told him he was crazy - if this little inn was so expensive, what did he think we would find at the Hilton? I went in and told my sad tale, and Orville, the most wonderful guest services manager in the world, hooked us up with a lovely room for $139, bought us breakfast for the next day, came outside to help us park the tent trailer, gave the kids cookies, and told us how to get to the mall. Seriously, I have never seen such excellent customer service, and it couldn't have come at a better time. When he offered us breakfast, tears came to my eyes. The room was great, with a fridge and a microwave, there was a nice pool, and a relaxing hot tub. Bliss, bliss, bliss. We stayed not just that night, but the next as well, and it was actually a really nice way to end a camping trip. We all got clean, relaxed, and Stuart and the kids got a TV fix. When we left for home, the plan was to stop in Hinton for an overnight visit with Stuart's sister, who lives there. She had conveniently decided to rip apart her spare room, and take apart the spare bed to sand and re-stain, on the one weekend out of the year we had asked to visit. Yes, she knew we were coming. Yes, we had given them lots of notice. Yes, her husband has stayed with us once a month for the last 6 years, on his way to work at a local mine. I don't know, she's just like that, I guess. I'm still a bit put out about the whole thing. That and the fact that my nephew took Brian off to play some video game that involves throwing cats and watching them splat while I was in the washroom. Why does a child of any age have a game like that? Again, I don't know. They're just like that. So, we headed home, and in the long run, I was so happy to be in my own bed that night, I didn't mind too much. I felt bad for the kids, as they weren't expecting to sit for 8 hours of driving that day, but we let them watch 3 DVDs during the trip, which seemed to make up for it. Anyway, in Edmonton, we got to do some fun shopping. We did our annual Ikea visit. I actually kept myself pretty reined in, and had made a list of things I wanted, so it went pretty smoothly. We were happily surprised that both big kids were able to go into the kids area to play, so Stuart & I got to enjoy some just-us-plus-the-baby time. That was nice. We carried on like teenagers, with no one to get grossed out, or laugh guiltily, 'cause they sort of know what's going on. I also went to the Indigo bookstore, and came home with a bounty: Weekend Knitting, Handknit Holidays, and Knitting Rules. I also found a few Christmas presents, an old Lindsey Davis book I've read but is worth re-reading, and a book of English Mystery writers, which I'm looking forward to checking out. Katie found something called Pirateology, and Brian came home with a Little Einsteins CD. Stuart had his fun, too, although I can't remember what he ended up with, apart from a couple of new astronomy magazines. We do love the bookstore. Afterwards, we spent a couple of hours at Chucke Cheese. We had never been there, and had a lot of fun. I always imagined that place as a sort of crazy, noisy, bratty hell, but it wasn't too bad, and gave the kiddies a chance to blow off some steam. We also wandered through the West Edmonton Mall, let Katie and Brian each take a ride in the amusement park, looked at the Pirate Ship, watched the skaters at the ice rink, and found a place to get Katie's ears pierced. Very thrilling. I also bought Stuart's birthday present, since it's coming up shortly, and he's very pleased to have the complete DVD collection of Stargate SG-1, seasons 1-8. I am now trying to convince him that we could cut the cable, and he could watch this instead, but so far, no such luck. So, that's the trip. We had fun, I'm glad to be home. I'm about halfway through Knitting Rules, which is good, but a tad lighter than I thought it would be, and so very, very pleased to have both Handknit Holidays and Weekend Knitting. I've been longing for HH for months, since I checked it out from the library. It was the first pattern book I'd seen that I though I would use enough to warrant owning. I spent hours in the bookstore deciding on what else to buy. It came down to a choice between WK and Last Minute Knitted Gifts, but I went with WK, and hope to get the other one next time, maybe for Christmas. I think my first project will be the flap-top mittens from HH for my step-dad, and I want to make the knitted dolly from WK for Gwenyth for Christmas. So much to knit, so little time. I'd better get busy.