Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Stitching While Weightless

Riddle: What do you call a cow who has just given birth?

Getting crafty in outer space: http://www.space.com/21207-astronaut-packs-space-station-crafts.html

Minnesota native Karen Nyberg (very typical Minnesota name) is an astronaut going up to the International Space Station.  She plans to bring some handwork with her.   Since she’ll be up there six months, she’ll have some spare minutes to fill, and what better than to ornament a quilt square or work on a counted cross stitch pattern by starlight?

I know there will be more work to do on A Drowning Spool, but I’m already looking around for the next entry in this series.  Sometimes the next book comes knocking on the door about the time the current one is ending, but this time there seem to be several out there jumping up and down shouting, “Me, me!  Choose me!” 

 Right now I’m leaning towards one about an excavation uncovering a mail bag from the 1960s or 70s full of undelivered mail.  The magazines are fun, the bills interesting – how much lower prices were then! – but some of the first class letters are really intriguing.  A never-delivered marriage proposal, a threat of violence to a blackmailer, a creepy love letter to a woman who later disappeared . . . all kinds of possibilities.

But maybe it’s time for another Christmas story.  I remember going to a play in which, near the end, one of the characters sat very quietly on stage and I amused myself by thinking how funny it would be if she fell asleep – and then, because I have that kind of mind: what if she died, and no one realized it until the play was over?  So suppose Betsy is somehow involved in a local production of A Christmas Carol, and suppose old miser Joe Nickels has been persuaded to get involved, too?  Hmmmm . . .

Those of you who stitch know what a chatelaine is: a collection of  metal implements and implement-holders related to embroidery.  A thimble holder, a needle case, a scissors sheath, etc.,  each hanging on a little chain, and the chains attached to a brooch or roundel the owner fastens to her waist.  They were very popular in the Victorian era, but they actually date to medieval and Renaissance days.  Here’s an interesting article about them: http://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/the-killer-mobile-device-for-victorian-women/

Solution:  Decaffinated!


Linda O. Johnston said...

Having visited the Endeavor which is now in Los Angeles, Monica, I can imagine what it would be like to do handcrafts on a space station. Or maybe I can't. I'm not sure what weightlessness would do to one's ability to stitch.

Betty Hechtman said...

while at Malice, I went to the Air and Space Musuem and saw the inside of the space station on display. I'd need a lot of crocheting and knitting to keep me calm in that tight space.

Love your mailbag idea!

Anonymous said...

Great plot idea!