Monday, May 21, 2007
Look at these wacky poodles!
What in the world is that?
That is an alpaca!
Isn't it adorable? Here it is with a friend:
Jim and I went out to Hood River, Oregon today with Alexandra and Jim's mother, Sharon. Hood River is a cute town in the Columbia River Gorge that is best known for its orchards and its world-class windsurfing, but it also seems to have a decent alpaca presence. Who knew? I don't know if we would have thought to swing by this alpaca ranch/knitting shop if not for the newfound knitting fascination, but I am so glad we did. These animals are WONDERFUL! They were sheared recently, hence the poodliness. And how's this for a view from a knitting shop window?
And some yarn:
This is the Cascade Alpaca Ranch and the Foothills Yarn & Fiber shop, where you can pet and feed alpacas, pet the big Great Pyrennese guard dog or the guard-cats Knit and Purl; you can buy lots of yarn. And you can actually buy yarn from specific animals and know their names! How fun to wear a sweater made from "Zhivago wool" for example! This is Zhivago:
The owners of the ranch, Connie and Tom, are incredibly nice and generous with their time and showed us how spinning works and also their loom for weaving. I was very touched by this story: Connie told us about how their neighbors have a llama named Kool-Aid to guard their sheep, and how recently a very elderly sheep passed away, and after they buried it, Kool-Aid sat on its grave all day and wouldn't budge. Isn't that sad and sweet?
Here's Jim with some new friends:
Hood River, by the way, is about an hour east of Portland, and the drive through the Columbia Gorge is spectacular. I'm looking forward to going back for you-pick cherry season, a hike on the slopes of Mount Hood, and to replenish my alpaca fleece supplies later in the summer!
Posted by Laini Taylor at 11:29 PM