random musings


The days are getting longer. Lighter. I desperately hold on to this thought, as February and the sudden temperature dip are really getting to me. Naively, I thought we were past the really cold days; I can hear the weather laugh at me in the background… or maybe it's just the sound of my frozen jaw trying to move. 

Perhaps this is a good opportunity to finish that incredibly warm crochet blanket I started in 2007. Now that I think about it, that's a great idea and a fantastic way to turn this cold around and laugh in the face of the weather. Who's winning now?


So, the blanket. It's a ripple blanket (more photos here) made with all colours I could find of that particular yarn at the time. I started it in April 2007. I had moved to the UK the September before and was discovering what it's like to part with people forever… when you're far away.

My great aunt Esmeralda was in hospital and I traveled home to say goodbye – the only goodbye I was ever in time for. I spent a week at home or so, mostly with her. And that's when I started the blanket, with all the colours I could find, because life is happy and sad and so amazing and so painful at times. I wanted my blanket to show that through its colours, all of its colours. What I didn't know at the time was that it would carry so much more weight than the lessons I wanted to teach myself.

I must have been about five rows in (and on my third – and final – attempt), and my aunt said to me, out of the blue: "You're so artistic, menina. Who would have guessed you'd ever be able to make something so pretty like that?"

I remember pausing for a moment, and then laughing. We both did. I'll always have that laughter, it was special; laughter is even more special when you don't hear it often, isn't it? Clearly, my path of destruction as a very naughty child had left marks on her, the one who looked after me so many days of my life we both lost count. It felt good to turn that impression around for both of us.

I'm now past all these colours, especially all of them together, but I look at this blanket and I love it, every bit of it, and the memories and smiles it never fails to bring me. There's a bit of my childhood in it, my memories of my childhood forever tangled with my aunt's gentle spoiling and love, and her permanent idea of me as the naughty kid who always had a plan for mischief. And there's a bit of that goodbye, the one you never want to say, the one you don't say, but that you feel so grateful for having had; goodbyes are hard and painful, but important and I feel so lucky we were able to have ours, albeit the silent type.

Right, onto to the sofa it is, under my blankie, crocheting away! Speak soon.


1 Comment

  1. 24 February 2015 / 20:52

    Yes, you are artistic, dear Joana, and so talented with words.
    I am glad that you share this precious gift with the world and that I can be part of your audience as particularly this post makes me smile: because I can hear you say it, because I read the Portuguese saudade in it and because it is so you!
    Warm hug and speak soon!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *