Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Tour de Fleece

The Tour de France is one of my favorite sports events to watch in the summer.  Having been an avid cyclist and racer until my knees and neck went bonky it always gives me a thrill to watch.  This year, I am spinning again with the Tour, this time with my new little drop spindle and Team Jenkins for the Tour de Fleece, put on by Ravelry.
Quite a different kind of spinning, but it appeals to my love of process.  I once used, or tried to use a top whorl spindle but never got the feel.  This year I bought a little Jenkins Delight - a cute little Turkish spindle and I've fallen in love.  We are a matched pair.  So there is something to be said about the horse matching the rider, or the dog matching the handler.  You can force something and make it work and be always fighting with it, or you can find the one that seems to fit, understand it, know it for it's strengths and weaknesses and flow with it. The little Jenkins is like that.  She has her weaknesses (she's small) and her strenghts (she's balanced perfectly); I too have my strengths (I am a detail person) and my weaknesses (I am impatient).  By recognizing this on both the part of the tool and myself, I am able to learn to use this little Delight and create something of beauty. Here is my visual record of my learning process. 

In the Beginning

Notice how the wind is uneven

Now starting to be mindful of my winding

Getting better, but still not quite right

And patience pays out

Getting toward the end

Finally, finished and off the spindle. Everything went sproing.
I noticed that my teammates cops were beautifully wound on and mine was a mess, so I started paying attention to this one minute detail.  I had to be mindful of where I placed the single yarn and how tightly I wound it on.  It was a slow process - testing my patience, coaxing me to slow my pace, take a deep breath and enjoy the process and watch as the beauty of the yarn started to twine itself together. Sometimes, I went astray - so be it.  Correct it for the next wind.  I am still getting the rhythm of it and my little Melisa Delight is there to help me through it. She stays balanced no mater what.  It's my job to keep her on track.

Hmm....kind of like my shepherding.  Jill and I are a good match.  I need to know my dogs strengths and weaknesses as well as my own in order to create the beauty of sheep herding.  Don't force it to happen, work with it.  Be patient, be mindful.  Enjoy the process.

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