Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Postcards from the Road: A Tale of Tragedy and Great Kindness

I have had a wonderful week away.  Vancouver has been glorious, with only a wee bit of rain last night.  Quadra Island was spectacular.  Jacey Boggs was inspiring and just plain swell.  I had a marvellous visit with my kids, and with new friends Liz and Mark.

But none of that is why I blog this morning.  Instead, I want to share a story of Tragedy turned upside-down by Great Kindness. 

Once upon a time, not so very long ago, an Intrepid Spinner packed her bags for a workshop.  This Spinner travels a bit, so she has a pretty reliable system for ensuring that her tools and equipment arrive at the other end safely.  She also really likes to fly with one particular airline within Canada because they have always been good to her.  This airline is Westjet.

The flight was uneventful but pleasant.  The Spinner arrived in Vancouver and managed to get herself to her Cozy Accommodation.  She opened her bag, and:

((Insert dramatic music here.))

Her niddy-noddy, the second fibre tool she had ever purchased, waaay back when she was a Fledgling Spinner...DESTROYED.

The Spinner was...somewhat...distraught.

So, being a Spinner of the 21st Century, she did what anyone in this situation would do.  She grabbed her cell phone and Tweeted:

"Aaaaaaagggghhhh! @Westjet broke my niddy-noddy!"

Within minutes, West jet responded with:

"What is a niddy-noddy, and how can we help?"

The Spinner sent a Wikipedia link, and explained her predicament.  Westjet then Tweeted:

"#Vancouver we need your help.  Please let @spindleprincess know if you can help her find a niddy-noddy by noon tomorrow"

They even added the Wikipedia link so Vancouver would know what a niddy-noddy was.  Within minutes, the Spinner was deluged with responses.  A loaned niddy-noddy was arranged, and a replacement put on hold for when the Spinner could pick it up.  All was well.

Then Westjet showed their true colors.  They have offered to pay for the replacement niddy-noddy.  They have checked in with the Spinner several times to ensure that all is well.  They are being AWESOME.

The End.

So, thank you Westjet for your Great Kindness.

The Spinner will be travelling back to her home in the North tomorrow, and can hardly wait to fly Westjet again.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

A Postcard from the Road

Greetings from Vancouver!

I am once again on the move, this time strictly for fun.  I'm hanging out in Vancouver, disrupting the lives of my two older children this week before journeying to Quadra Island to take a workshop with the incomparable Jacey Boggs of Insubordiknit fame.

I arrived on Tuesday, and was promptly roped into helping two male actors find budget-friendly dresses for a drag improv show.  Words cannot describe the experience, except maybe the word "bizarre".  And/or "hilarious".  These guys had no idea what women go through to look so good, and it turned out that they were pickier than any girl I've ever shopped with.  I came home with sore feet from all the walking, and sore sides from laughing so hard.

Wednesday got off to a bad start...

Yep, that's my Trindle.  I pulled it out of my bag to stuff more fibre around it.  Apparently that was a bad idea.  (After close examination, I have deemed the shaft repairable, but it was a bad idea anyway.)

So I consoled myself with a trip to Maiwa Supply on Granville Island.  Things improved quickly...

Yes, The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook

I shall digress into a mini-review:

This is an epic work that took authors Deborah Robson and Carol Ekarius years to produce, and it shows.  The attention to detail is remarkable, and the photos are stunning.  There is a ton of information packed into this book, valid information, with references and everything.  And not just about sheep--the authors have included other fur-bearing critters, including cats and dogs.  Each species and breed is given a full history, a description of its physical attributes, a description of its fleece or fibre, and photos of its fibre unwashed, washed, and spun. This book will prove to be a priceless resource for spinners for years to come, and should be required reading for EVERYONE in the Master Spinner Program.

One small caveat to the Master Spinner types out there, some of the samples are less than perfectly spun, but Deb Robson herself told me that the book is not about perfect spinning, it is about fleece and fibre.

(By the way, I did say that this book contains a ton of information...that is also how much the book weighs!  It is wonderful, in this day of ebooks and Kindles to see a publisher commit to a big, solid reference that, frankly, will only appeal to a niche market.  But this book should take that niche by storm.  It is awesome.  BUY IT.)

We now return you to your regularly scheduled blog:

I also scored some dyes and some bits and bobs for the Fibre Week Kids Camp.

Then I mosied on down to the Silk Weaving Studio, where I found these...


I can hardly wait to see what today will bring!`