Mum was always knitting, Money always seemed to be scarce, and when she decided to knit a pullover or jacket, she would go to the store and select the wool. She would only buy about a third of it, and have the rest reserved for when she had used the original supply. Dad had a weekly wage and so she could only afford the cost but buying her wool weekly. The first time I decided to knit something for myself, I had saved some money. I suppose I was about 12 years old and so we went together to the shop. I chose my wool and bought it all. Mum was almost shocked that I would buy all the wool I needed without reserving the rest.
I was always knitting something, usually for myself: one plain, one purl, make a stitch and knit two together was the language we used. I moved over to Switzerland and got married and not only did I have children to knit for, but a Swiss mother-in-law that was convinced she had invented knitting. I discovered that in Europe people knit differently to those in England. We would wrap the wool around the needle to make a stitch and the continentals would fetch the wool through the stich. The result was the same, although Swiss mother-in-law was convinced her knitted garments were better than mine.
As time passed I learned to knit socks. Now that was really something rewarding. My poor kids wore knitted knee high socks under their trousers to keep them warm. Knitting socks was a scientific exercise. The heel and toe had to be knitted incorporating an extra thread matching the original wool to strengthen the sock in the right places. Yes family Angloswiss all had knitted socks, although Mr. Swiss only wore them at home, and not in the office: seems they did not match the suit and tie.
In the meanwhile Swiss mother-in-law taught me to crochet. All the pullovers I had knitted were unraveled and again reduce to the original balls of wool. I crochered covers from this now recycled wool using two colours together. I had many covers, too many, but it kept me busy. In the meanwhile my mum was still knitting in England and had discovered the nylon wool in bright fluorescent colours. When she visited us in Switzerland she always brought a few of these neon coloured pullovers with her. They were very good for taking apart and making covers.
Then the computer arrived. Who wants to knit when you have a computer. There are games to be played and all sorts of new tricks to learn. I think that was the death of knitting for me. I would rather spend time on my computer than knitting. I can always buy a pullover in a store. I actually never wear knitted garments, they are too warm for me. We had central heating at home and I live in t-shirts Winter and Summer. I even go out wearing a t-shirt in Winter beneath my jacket.
I noticed that the local supermarket no longer sells wool. Golden Oldie grandmothers have no time for knitting, we are too busy writing blogs or uploading photos: not to mention the interesting conversations in Facebook. When I think of it, I have never seen a conversation in Facebook based on knitting problems. Even the sheep have become redundant.