“I know this is an art project–but it’s really about bringing the neighborhood together.” J. said. I talked about the approaching end of this knitting project; he said I’ll have to tell his wife Margaret (an arts reporter for the Herald). J. had stopped to say hi, wearing a moss Panama hat. He misses his dog Cody so has volunteered to start dogwalking for a friend. His friend’s dog Barkley is a standard poodle like Cody was. I asked him if it’s grey like Cody, but he said Barkley is blond, a hue officially called “peach” in the dog world.
“Are you warm enough?” C. asked me. “Not quite,” I said. There was a nippy wind this morning and I forgot the difference it makes to knit in the shade before the sun tops the hill. My hands and face felt pepperminty with the cold. I did lamaze breathing each time that piercing wind struck me…more layers next time.
Grace and Rachel were out walking, women who accompanied me in the early days of this project, untwisting the knit line, buying me yarn, and cheering me on. They had two new walking recruits, Cathy and Lynn. They stopped and asked me how many years I’ve been knitting at the bench now, and I said four. I asked them how many years they’ve been walking together and they too had walked for four years. “It’s cheaper than therapy!” the new recruit with round glasses and curly hair quipped and the other said how good it was to get out and breathe the fresh air. Then the four of them crossed the road just out of earshot and finished their “therapy,” untangling each other’s knots with active listening and brainstorming. I thought how empowering this daily ritual of walking together; a gift to look forward to each morning, a living sign of community.
(p.s. I missed my knit yesterday b/c I was out of town!)