Last night, at knit night, the local yarn store owner announced that she is closing the shop at the end of April. For most of us this was both unsurprising, and a shock, all at the same time. It is bittersweet news for the owner, who is closing the shop so that she can spend more time with her family – especially her new little one. We all are delighted that she will be able to do what she wants to do most right now. And yet, I know that we all are feeling a sense of loss today.
The yarn store, “my” yarn store, is one of the first places I went when I moved to Kansas City just over two years ago. I was immediately welcomed by the owner and by a group of wonderful women whom I have now been knitting with every Wednesday night for the last two years. I have made most of my friends here in Kansas City at this shop. When I first moved here and didn’t have steady work, I can’t count the number of days I enjoyed the hospitality of the store, just stopping in and knitting on the couch for hours at a time. This store truly has been a home away from home and I will miss it terribly.
Over the years, I’ve often marveled at how friendships are formed, how they ebb and flow, and how people I thought I would always be friends with have drifted away and people I thought would just be passing ships have stuck close to me. I was particularly reminded of this when my college roommate told me two nights ago that she was offered a faculty position at a university less than four hours from me.
This is someone I lived with three out of the four years in college. We have spent the last ten years with almost 2000 miles between us; when I left college I returned home to Los Angeles and she continued on to graduate school in the Midwest. How could I know that two years ago I would move back to the Midwest? Or that a year ago she would move to Texas? Or that now we would be so close that we could eagerly plan weekend trips to visit each other?
To be clear, I never thought that our friendship would disappear. And yet for many years it waned while we pursued different paths. I am so thrilled that our paths cross again though. It makes me once again feel like I’ve found something precious.