Thursday, July 6, 2017

Baltimore Convention Consolations

All the to-ing and fro-ing has wreaked havoc on my knitting, spinning, canning, blogging, etc but one consolation is when in Baltimore for a convention I was able to visit Neighborhood Fiber Co. It's in a converted firehouse – there are still lunettes in the ceiling where the poles for the firefighters to slide down used to be. They really, truly used to do that.

Neighborhood Fiber Company

For conventioneers, the shop is easy to get to (from the Baltimore Convention Center it's a short ride on the light rail) and well-worth a visit. I splurged on a braid of absolutely lovely Cobblestone Roving (75/25 BFL/Silk) in colorway Sandtown-Winchester for my Tour de Fleece project and some other goodies. I dunno when I'll have time to start it – the Grand Départ was July 1 – but that's another matter. At least I'm ready to start.

Cobblestone Roving, colorway Sandtown-Winchester

There was a lot of sitting in large groups during this convention, ideal for working discreetly on a small project like a Lionberry crescent shawlette. Mine is knit in Neighborhood Fiber Co. Capitol Luxury Lace (80/10/10 MCN), colorway Del Rey.

Lionberry wip

When I bought the Sugar 'n Cream at the big box store I had the foresight to also buy a circular needle. While I've had decent experiences with some big box store knitting needle brands, such as Susan Bates, Clover, or Boye, alas, this no-name one turned out to be very poorly made. The suffering inflicted by the poor quality needle almost canceled out the pleasure of the lovely yarn. Note to self: don't do that again.

Some of my fellow conventioneers had good views from their hotel rooms into Camden Yards, which indeed is a most beautiful baseball stadium. I just had a view of the convention center complex. Interestingly, one of the buildings has a green roof. It's hard to tell from the photo, but the plants are very closely spaced and some appear to be three or four feet (0.9-1.2 m) tall. I don't know if this green roof has much impact on pollution or the urban heat island effect, but it was more pleasant to look at than an ordinary roof.

Baltimore Convention Center green roof

During free time while some people took in a baseball game and others went to the Inner Harbor, I visited Lexington Market to try crab cakes and soft-shell crab at Faidley's, which were pricey and very good. Many crab cakes are too highly seasoned to my taste, but these were just right. As for the soft-shell, I was told that the proper way to eat a soft-shell crab is fried, in a sandwich with the legs dangling out. I was veddy proper. (Faidley's also has all kinds of other seafood.)

Soft-shell crab

Thanks to the conference I spent the Fourth of July traveling, then at home blissfully making up my sleep deficit. Sigh. Every year I vow: Never travel on a holiday. Then I end up doing it anyway. Ah well, at least this time there were consolations.

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