Monday, October 19, 2015


At Knit Night a couple of months ago, I heard the leader of our group mention that she had used Airbnb to rent an inexpensive room in a house near Rhinebeck. Wow, I thought, she's older than me.  Isn't Airbnb something for young folks?  She added that there were still other rooms available in that same house. I don't understand quite how it happened, but I went home that evening and, stepping FAR outside my comfort zone, committed to staying in a room in a house owned by a person whom I had never met, a room that slept 3.  Then I texted my friend who was out of town for work and told her where we were going the third weekend of October.  After that, I messaged Auntie Kate and explained that she would be meeting the two of us at Rhinebeck.

It was that simple.  I was really going to Rhinebeck.

Confused? Rhinebeck is shorthand for the one of the biggest sheep-and-wool festivals in the US. It is, quite simply, 2 fiber-filled days in that autumnal utopia otherwise known as upstate NY. It is the place to see and be seen by hundreds of other knitters, spinners, and weavers. Any yarn artist worth her salt makes, at one time or another, a pilgrimage to the once-a-year wool mecca known as Rhinebeck.

As it turns out, my friend had to cancel at the last minute, so I grabbed Susie and headed north last Friday. A word about Susie - although she has known how to knit for a year or so, she has steadfastly refused to learn to purl.  That is, until last month, when I convinced her to throw caution to the winds and learn the other half of this particular fiber art.  Something happened once she gained this new skill, something indefinable really - all I know is that suddenly 10-year-old Susie was a knitter with a capital K.  I would come home from an evening out to find her on the couch, hard at work with a pile of yarn beside her. "I had to frog it," she'd tell me, all business-like. "I kept counting and it still didn't look right. So I started over." She taught 3 of her friends how to knit. She demanded frequent trips to Michaels to get more yarn, with which she designed her own cowls.

Susie kept plunging her hands into this stuff. Can't say I blame her...
Still, I didn't know how Susie would react to being dragged around the Duchess County Fairgrounds for hours on end, just to look at yarn and roving and sheep and spinning wheels.  I needn't have worried, however, because it seems she found her people there. She petted fleece and oohed and aahed over yarn. She watched a sheepdog demonstration. She ate kettlecorn. In other words, she fully imbibed that magic that is Rhinebeck. In the end, Auntie Kate and I had to practically drag her to the car so we could get on the road toward home.

I had a pretty good time, too, actually. But that's tomorrow's post. I'm too busy right now trying to convince Larry that I, um, won that large rug loom that is sitting in the living room. That's right, just lucky, I guess. And smart enough to carry cash...


  1. Oh, how cool! And great that you have a crafting accomplice at home!

  2. I can't wait to hear the full story! I am jealous that you "happened into" a house situation, as I would love to try going that way (instead of motels), but don't want to do the work of finding one myself. Maybe my luck will go that way next year.

  3. I'm so glad you went! Crafting weekends are the BEST.

    A friend of mine recently opened her home as an AirBnB place. You are both brave!

  4. It sounds fantastic! I liked your pictures on instagram as well. We use Airbnb all the time and it's great. When we were in Ireland, we were in hotels some nights, B&Bs for others and airbnb rentals as well and we were definitely the most comfortable in the airbnb places. I just don't like the slight akwardness of meeting the host and the key transfer.