While there were some differences this year, the annual Bodega Bay weekend that Sew Group has been doing for 16 years now was as wonderful as always. We really missed the folks who could not be there, and the absence of Laurel, who passed away last year, was palpable. Laurel was a larger than life person and love her or not, her presence was always there and her absence was deeply felt. During her illness she was not able to come every year, but this time we knew she'd never come again and I think we all were aware of it. Others were unable to come due to changes in their personal lives and while we missed them very, very much, I know I am not alone in wishing them all the best as they move forward with their lives. We also had several new participants and it's great to have a new wave of people joining in - welcome to you all!
As is so often the case with wonderful experiences, there isn't a lot to say about the great time we had. As always, the environment is unbelievably beautiful. There were 20 of us spread out over 3 houses, and as the 3rd house (which I was staying in) was a few blocks away from the other 2 I probably spent more time out of doors than I ever have at BB before (which is not a testament to my outdoorswomanship, I must say). It was quite a stiff walk uphill from House # 1 & 2 to House # 3 and required some fortitude to make the trip.
We did lots of sewing, spinning, silk-flower-making; knitting; cross-stitch, and you name it. We ate more terrific meals than I count recount, we drank loads of wine, talked until we were hoarse, slept late ( or not), and had the time of our lives. Do you remember what it was like as a kid to look forward to Christmas, or you birthday, or some other meaningful event? That sense of anticipation, of thinking "the day" would never come, and of the delight when it finally did? Bodega Bay is for all of us what those events were like as a kid. We just wish we could do it twice a year instead of just once.
The hum of activity of all the needlework and handicrafts hardly stopped from Friday night through Monday morning. We churned out aprons, jackets, blouses, silk flowers, knitted coats (or at least portions thereof), pieced shirts, baby quilts, vests, tee shirts, and more. I am truly humbled by the creative genius of these wonderful women who I have been honored to know, in some cases, for over 25 years, and am deeply grateful for the friendship, support, love, and example of these extraordinary friends. I don't know what I did to deserve to be part of this group, but I am so glad I am. I wish I knew what else to say, but words fail me in an attempt to describe how much this weekend, and the Sew Group as a whole, means to me. I just hope you all know what I mean. Thank you all for being a part of my life.