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Saying Goodbye

My twelve-year-old knitter from Korea, who has been visiting the US for two months, had her last day with us Thursday. We had a good time but it was hard to say goodbye.

She brought some Korean food her aunt made for us. It looked a lot like California Rolls from a Japanese restaurant but had some differences. Half of them were wrapped in seaweed, half wrapped in very thin egg. According to what I could understand (her English is better than when she started but still very limited), the contents were: rice, egg, crabmeat, ham (or some sort of flavored pork), carrot, and pickle. They were dusted with sesame seeds. The plate was so beautiful I took a picture. She also brought two kinds of grapes, very beautiful picked from the stems and washed in a glass bowl.

It was sort of a fun day. I had one girl who came first and was alone with me for a while (she is in the picture in the back row). Then my korean girl (whose name I can not pronounce at all, even though I am reasonably good at language pronouncing) came with her goodies. Later a family group of one girl and two brothers (plus mom) came in, and later a set of sisters from the neighborhood, who are regulars, also joined us. They got downright silly with one another which was sort of a sweet way to show they cared. The kids all except perhaps one, at least tried the very unique food. In most cases, they really liked it, and by the end of the session there was no food left.

My girl who was leaving, finished her hat today. This was no small accomplishment, since it required a good deal of knitting at home, and she had to understand instructions I drew out on a piece of paper for her. I fortunately had a bit of her knitting to use as a gauge swatch when we started so we got the fit pretty good. It was perhaps a little too short and wanted to pop off her head a little, either that or she just didn’t want to wear it in the picture. However, it looked beautiful. She knit three sections in garter stitch (which is pretty stretchy) and after starting with a rectangle she decreased into a sort of triangle on top of the rectangle. Today she sewed the pieces together very well, and it looks wonderful. She was proud.

When it was time to leave I could tell she didn’t want to say goodbye. I started to shake her hand, but then stood back and asked “Do you want a hug?” because I sensed she did. Her aunt was there… I typically stay away from hugging the kids as good practice, and love them in other ways. But this was a big goodbye and I could tell. She said “YES!” and hugged me for a little longer than I would have expected. What a sweetheart she is. I’ll miss her.

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