Most people look surprised when I tell them I love knitting and crochet, and am rather good at both of them. Apparently it doesn’t match my profile. Women of my generation don’t have time for such old fashioned pursuits, especially not former investment bankers.
When people digest the fact that I do love knitting, the next question they ask is, 'when did you learn?' Taking knitting up as a challenge after adulthood, and learning through books seems to invest a bit of respectability into the craft of knitting. Not so picking up the basics at the age of eight by watching a grandmother knit. But that is exactly how it happened. I saw her transfer the patterns I chose into sweaters I could wear, and wanted to be a part of that arcane sisterhood. So I picked up the knitting needles, and never put them down since.
By the time I was twelve, I became better at following patterns than my grandmother. Triple cabling was something she never quite got, and she was more than happy to have me teach her. Even today, twenty-two years after I lost her, when I see a particularly good cable pattern, I think of her.
Why this today, on Teachers’ Day? Because, my grandmother was all that a good teacher should be. It is easy to stand in front of a class and lecture. It is much harder to do something with such passion, that others are inspired to learn. And it is much harder still to learn from a student when the student has overtaken you. I was lucky to have a teacher like her.