sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

July 17, 2009

portland, here i come
posted by soe 11:26 pm

So… you know how I like to knit socks? Well, come next month, I’m going to fly out to Portland, Oregon, to the first ever Sock Summit, a knitting extravaganza for those of us obsessed with creating clothing for feet.

When they opened up registration back at the end of May, the enthusiasm of knitters worldwide caused a system crash the likes of which hadn’t been seen since Iceland’s economy flat-lined. Thirty thousand simultaneous hits on a site, while flattering, do not do good things to its servers. The site crashed, took a long time to reboot, and then experienced some hiccups in showing what availability existed in classes.

I was one of the lucky knitters. I hopped back onto the site shortly after it came back up and, not finding any openings in the longer classes I was interested in, managed to enroll in four hour-long classes on Saturday and Sunday. I have two mini classes related to knitting socks from the toe up (I’m much more comfortable with knitting a sock from the top down), a lecture on Turkish colorwork (which includes the opportunity to try some techniques), and an hour devoted to ergonomically correct knitting (personally, I’m hoping some massage technique tips get worked into that one). None of those classes were originally on my radar, but I bet they’re going to be fascinating and that I will learn a lot.

I’d enrolled in those classes while at my folks’ and was on a plane heading home when the organizers realized that classes weren’t showing up properly on the schedule. When I got back to the Burrow to the message that additional classes had opened up, I was able to add a half-day class on knitting fancy cuffs on my socks — some to make my socks more girly and others to appeal to my more manly recipients. It was a class I’d been really interested in, so I was delighted. (And lucky. There were tons of knitters out there who got shut out altogether.)

I admit that while I reserved a hotel room back in April, long before registration opened, I had waited to book a flight until I knew that I had managed to secure a class or two. The price of flights had been high all spring, so I was sure that prices had to come down sooner or later.

I waited.

I compared travel discount sites and low-cost carriers.

To be frank, I started to stress.

I contemplated selling off my classes.

Earlier this week, the Sock Summit organizers wrote, saying they were going to hold a lottery to distribute the last returned slots. I decided this was do or die. If I got into an additional class, I’d suck it up and buy a plane ticket.

Tonight I got an email from one of the Sock Team 2 members, asking if I was still interested in the knee sock class.

I bought my plane ticket.

Pacific Northwest, watch out!

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