Wednesday, September 21, 2005
I had a very nice time this past weekend. I joined three of my good friends and shared a booth at the Northeast Small Farm and Rural Living Expo out at the GDS Fairgrounds. What a great educational experience! There was a trade show and exhibits focused on all aspects of agriculture, not to mention all the wonderful livestock. The picture above shows the entrance to the building where we were spinning and weaving away. Grace brought several antique wheels for the public to try (and buy), and I spun and demonstrated on them from time to time. We had the great wheel set up just outside the building, and it attracted many onlookers each time we would spin. It is really nice to be able to demonstrate spinning on the great wheel, so many of the people comment that they have never seen one in action. I am glad to have given them that experience. I must admit that whenever I had the chance, I would spin on this beautiful piece of history pictured below. This is a spinning wheel that is marked "Tilden". It could be dated anywhere from about 1776 on up to 1826. Captain Calvin Tilden and his son Luther both made wheels, so it is difficult to tell which one made this one. Captain Tilden fought in the Revolutionary War. He died in 1822. His son died in 1826. I loved spinning on this wheel. Fred has made sure it is in top spinning condition, and also made several bobbins to go with it. I would love to buy this wheel, but cannot figure a way to sneak another wheel into my tiny cabin. I was content to have just had the chance to do a little spinning and dreaming about the people whose hands had crafted the wheel, and those hands who have made yarn on it. I cannot explain in words the way spinning on a wheel such as this makes me feel such a connection to the past. I met very many nice people, and was glad to see such interest in what we were doing. We made several good contacts, and had several nice invitations for future events. Since our building was right next to the livestock exhibits, we got to see wonderful animals. Just look at these magnificent horses... from the biggest to the smallest.... But the animal that caught our eye was this Highland Cattle... just look at the coat on this beast of beauty...you can spin it! We were all examining the sample handful that my friend Judy had acquired from the owner. It was a beautiful color, and the guard hair was incredibly long and coarse, but the undercoat was very soft. I was very tired when I finally got home late Sunday afternoon, and it was nice to spend some quiet time in the garden and checking in on my rabbits and chickens. Much to my surprise, I noticed that my Aracuna rooster had dropped his spurs! He is about 3 or 4 years old now, and his spurs were so big that they made him do a sorta goose step march around the yard. I have read about how to remove spurs, but we all agreed that we did not want to attempt that. I had no idea that suddenly one day they would just fall off! Now he has little stubs again. I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that he is in the middle of a molt.