Tuesday, May 29, 2007

so...where was I?

As soon as my jeans were washed and lost that Eau de Sheep scent, a tangy whiff I've grown so fond of, I was in Montana.

Montana looks just like you think it should. They didn't just make up that purple mountains' majesty line in the song, y'know. I kept thinking the ranch we were staying at looked like the movies,0507shear13mile_0816 until a neighbor told me that they had, indeed, filmed The Horse Whisperer and A River Runs Through It right up the road. Thus inspired, I got on horseback for the first time since junior high. It felt great. But looked dorky, as I white knuckled the reins while grinning ear-to-ear, so I'll skip the visual.

My sister, the mitering Lulu, came along for this leg of the Shear Spirit book photo marathon. We briefly - very briefly- considered bringing our loose squares to sew at night.

Here she is arranging yarn skeins for a still life.
Behind the scenes view:

What we were doing:
Lulu's really NOT a country girl and was a good sport about it, getting up close and personal with the animals and all.
This one liked her. A lot. She left that morning covered in Corriente cattle slobber.

I'll spare you an exhausting incident that involved her vigorously herding a group of pregnant ewes. We thought they should be in a particular spot with good light to make an interesting photo near a sweater for one of the book's patterns and they, the ewes, felt otherwise. I think they just wanted to be left alone till they gave birth. Selfish animals. No sense of publication deadlines and editorial needs. You know I'm joking , right? We had carte blanche from the rancher. He set us loose with the sheep, hoping the activity would get them into labor. I am considering a sideline: photography and fiber animal birthing coach.

We also met sheep with personality. 0507shear13mile_0218This is Devil. His mixed breeding left him with a lovely teddy bear face but these unfortunate horns that stick straight up . I was made to promise he wouldn't end up in the book. But the blog? Just don't tell the rancher if you know her, OK?

Do you wonder if still knit? I do! But with little to show. I was, as far as I could tell, the only person knitting while waiting for Old Faithful to blow a couple days after leaving the ranch, while playing tourist in Yellowstone. And then, 90 minutes later, while waiting from a different vantage point geyser-side, I was the only person ripping out 8 inches of cashmere lace, having found too many dropped stitches to live with. I think the cashmere lace will wait until I can work on it in one spot.


Anonymous kathy in juneau said...

Yay, you're back. What a treat your post was. Can't wait for the book!

11:52 AM  
Blogger Carole Knits said...

Once again I must say - I CANNOT wait for this book!

1:53 PM  
Blogger Cookie said...

There you are! :D

Sounds like you had another great trip. How many ewes when into labor and how many times were ya'll pulled over by the cops? ;^)

2:25 PM  
Anonymous se_lydem said...

Hey, great to have you back and hear about your adventures on the road! I have to say that I've come to look forward to your blog -- and, of course, your amazing photos. I think we met briefly on the train into NYC last summer -- you had the layouts for the Red Scarf Project folks (I think) and I was on my way in for the knit out with the SNB New Haven girls. Was that you? Think I'll knit a scarf for the project this year... Sue

10:16 PM  
Blogger kt said...

You: New ewe doula

Sister LU: Drooly moo doula

we missed you, but you were having fun and now you've shared so it's fine.

(contented grin)

11:50 PM  
Blogger gale said...

Since you asked:
(Cookie) No tickets! No speeding! No idea about the lambs - I was too scared to find out after I left!

(Sue) Yep that was me - er, still is me. Hope to see you if I ever make it to SnB again, thanks for stopping by the blog

(KT) Ok you didn't ask but loved my new tongue twisty job description!



9:28 AM  
Blogger Melissa said...

Oh my gosh! Gorgeous!

4:03 PM  
Blogger Baycolonyfarm said...

Your photos are just so beautiful!

6:56 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

Great photos! Worth the cattle slobber!

11:51 AM  
Blogger zippiknits said...

Wow, you were really out there! I'm so glad that you blog and share so much. Montana, I wanted a horse ranch there for many years. Then reality struck.

7:02 PM  
Blogger Rita said...

Your blog is so nice to look at - and read! One day I will get to Montana, I grew up reading my Dad's cowboy books, and I just built this dream world in my head of mountains, horses, and handsome cowboys! Now I'd settle for mountains, horses, cows and sheep!

11:46 PM  

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