And Miss Lisa needed some company while she had her hurty leg checked at the doctors…so off I went in Shamu to go pick her up and sit with her!
Of course, both of us had our "busy bags" in tow--Any idle time is handwork time, and we came prepared!
When we arrived, the waiting room was quite full, and we both sat down with our Hexies to wile away the time, visit, sew, and make good use of otherwise wasted boring SITTING.
I hate sitting in Doc’s offices ---but somehow knowing that *I* wasn’t the one being seen, and I was there just in case Lisa was incapacitated enough to not be able to drive herself home made it somewhat better! I wasn’t nervous over what any medical person could be doing to me..I wasn’t being poked, prodded and lanced!
Waiting rooms are interesting places, especially if you are sitting there sewing. I was using the time to attach one of the border sections to my hexagon medallion --- and there were a couple of older gentlemen also in the waiting room who started talking about how they remembered how local community women “USED” to come round for quiltings in the winter months, all of them gathering together.
These were “Stokes County” boys, brothers as it turns out -- and one thing I’ve learned about Stokes County, NC, is that if you are FROM there, you stay there! The roots run deep in Stokes County.
Lisa and I just stitched and listened while these two brothers, one the eldest of the family and one the youngest ((There were two sisters in between, one who has since passed on)) described what it was like growing up in the Good Ole Days in Stokes County, and how they remembered quilt frames being raised to the ceiling on pulleys, and even straight back chairs were used to hold the quilting frame when all the ladies would come and sit around it.
We heard about how the only heat source growing up was a fire place --- and the oldest brother remembers sleeping up under the rafters under a PILE of quilts, waking up to see how the snow had sifted through the cracks in the roof boards, leaving a fine dusting of snow in straight lines across the top quilt of the pile.
And Lisa and I stitched some more and listened some more to the old stories of what it was like to graduate high school in Stokes County, NC and go straight to work after. Choices weren’t many, and college wasn’t an option for many either. You could choose from Coca Cola, Pepsi, Hanes, or RJ Reynolds ((Tobacco )) or you farmed. And you prayed for enough work to make ends meet.
The younger of the two brothers described how he remembered the ladies quilting in a “fan” pattern, and he traced the air with his fingers to demonstrate, asking if we were familiar with that pattern. “Yes” we both replied, smiling. Baptist fans are a favorite of mine, and this old guy was hitting every heart string right on!
Before we knew it, an hour had flown by, and we really enjoyed our conversation time. Quilting can be such a wall breaker. How many times have we sat in a room with strangers, thumbed through old magazines, played with our phones, read our kindles or a book and never spoke a word to the stranger next to us? We would have sorely missed a wonderful opportunity to meet these two brothers, and would not have been so enriched after hearing their stories. EVERYONE has a story! We just have to open up enough to get the conversation started --- and then LISTEN to what is being said.
And in the midst of the talking and the visiting….one side panel has been added to the hexagon medallion…squaring off ONE side…
And the journey continues!