Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ISO...a drop spindle!

This summer I accompanied my son on a trip to Lima, Peru.  We worked in schools, did dramas in the street, and spread Love everywhere we went. 

Cleaning the library. Yes, they dusted EVERY text book and shelf.
  It wasn't a vacation. We weren't tourists. I was privileged to hang out with an amazing group of teenagers who just went the extra mile and gave themselves in service and ministry.  I was truly blessed.

Weeding the gardens

Talking to students
 But it wasn't all work and no play.  We got to visit Parque de la Reservas, where the young folks got soaked to the skin.  I should probably mention at this point that it's considered winter in Lima, and while everyone in PA was suffering in 100+ degree temperatures, these crazy people were running through the fountain in 58 degree weather.
This fountain you could play in.

However the guards didn't appreciate when they tried to play in this fountain...

That's my crazy son, Joshua, on the far right, back row, fist raised
 All that fun stuff aside, on our free day we went to the market and got a chance to barter.  I was determined to leave Peru with a drop spindle.  Only one minor problem: ¿Cómo se dice Drop Spindle en español? (How do you say, "Drop Spindle" in Spanish).  I gestured, used my rusty Spanish, described ("Puedo hacer la lana en hilo.  ¿Sabes a esta herramienta que hace que la lana en hilo?"  (Thank you Google Translate for the word: herramienta. I can only hope I was saying the right thing...) Eventually, I figured I could just draw a picture.

I partnered up with my new friend, Edith, who lives in Lima, to go shopping.  As we went from vendor to vendor, she showed my picture, and asked them where we could find one.  When we came to a place where there were hand-crafted musical instruments, she pulled out my picture again, spouted off Spanish so rapidly I caught every third word, and watched as the seller nodded his head. He pulled out a drop spindle, and my heart danced.  "How much?" I asked in Spanish.  I couldn't believe my ears.  Seriously? 12 Soles? That's like four U.S. dollars!  I bought it on the spot.  I didn't know if it would work properly. It wasn't ornate. That didn't matter. It was from Peru, where Alpaca and Textiles go hand-in-hand.  I wanted it, even if it was ornamental.
Asleep on the bus. I slept anywhere I could.

After our trip, we came home, I crashed.  Working for nine days, and only gaining about four to six hours of sleep a night wears on a body that is alarmingly and rapidly approaching forty.  Then I caught a stomach virus, and oh, we went on vacation, and I'm not going to go into every nitty gritty detail that happened after, but needless to say, I only recently got to try it out.  Recently, as in, yesterday.

I'm used to a bottom whorl spindle with a hook or a notch. This had neither, so after contemplating for a few minutes I decided to "what the hey" just do the usual to attach the leader to the top of the spindle.  Wow. It worked so well.  Nicely balanced, spun fast, long shaft.  I could see this becoming a favorite to spin on.  It is almost impossible to express the joy and delight I received in the knowledge that my newest spindle was not just a souvenier, but that it works...and it works beautifully.