Friday, October 22, 2010

At The Copa, Copacabana…

The hottest spot north of Havana…

Her name was Lola, she was a showgirl
With yellow feathers in her hair and a dress cut down to there.
She would merengue and do the cha-cha.
And while she tried to be a star, Tony always tended bar…

There she is again, sitting on the bench at the park. She’s there almost every day. She has her knitting with her, something gray. And she has a bag of popcorn. She tosses a piece or two, and the pigeons flock around and peck the ground hoping for a bite. Occasionally she’ll stop knitting and just stare off into the distance. She stays until dusk then slowly heads for home, or somewhere else. She’s looking for comfort and a way to survive, to live in the past.
She’s dressed in a faded blue silk dress. One you’d probably wear to a party rather than to the park, to sit on a bench, knitting. But anytime you see her she’s in a similar type dress. She has stockings on, and high heels, because in her generation it was a fashion faux pas to ever go without. She has her makeup on. She’d never dream of going out of the house without it. She wears a hat with a big flower on it. Sometimes the hat has feathers. She has a hat for every dress.
They say she used to be famous, some kind of show girl. But something bad happened. Something she could never get over. Now she’s just a lonely old woman, occupied by her knitting while she thinks of things that might have been.

Occasionally people pass by, speaking to her as they do. But most times she sits, alone, with her knitting, idle in her hands, and her thoughts.

She thinks of days long ago, when she was young. She could have been a star had things turned out differently. She thinks of lost love and things that might have been. She thinks, as she knits each stitch, that it’s much like her life, the yarn, a single strand, wrapped, pulled and put together until it’s a solid piece. It’s not perfect. She notices a mistake towards the beginning. But she’s gone too far to fix it now. She comes to a knot in the yarn but she just keeps going, knitting it in, making another bump in the fabric.
And she wonders what life would be like if you could just unravel, and start again.

Her name is Lola, she was a showgirl.
But that was 30 years ago, when they used to have a show,
Still in the dress she used to wear, faded feathers in her hair.
She sits there so refined, and drinks herself half-blind.
She lost her youth and she lost her Tony,
Now she's lost her mind…

I have been knitting besides the knitayear lately. Did a quick shawl/scarf, several dishcloths and a pompadoodle blanket. It’s mindless knitting, something to do. On knitayear, day 201, October 18, I was getting sick. I thought it was allergies. I was flying to Beaumont later for a retreat with great friends and was trying to stay well. I picked pale green yarn for the day. Reminded me of feeling a little icky for some reason! Day 202, October 19, was a comfortable day with friends. It was relaxing and surprising, all in all. There was a leisurely boat ride that was relaxing, a three hour meal that was unplanned and a get-together afterwards, for fun. I found a cheerful blue/green yarn with colored threads wrapped around it. It all goes together, like the different personalities, and makes a strong thread. It reminds me of our group. October 20, day 203 and the retreat is winding down. I’m a little anxious to see what happens today. No particular reason, just a mood I guess. I picked black/white/gray eyelash yarn. It is white for good, blends to gray, for I don’t know then black, for not so good and back to gray. Fitting. Day 204 is the day to head home. It’s October 21 and there’s always a contrite feeling when I leave. Sorry for leaving the good friends and good times. Sorry for going back to reality. Sorry for anything else that may have transpired while I was gone. I chose a grayish pink LB homespun. I like this yarn and always have even though a lot of people don’t. The pink tint signifies a brightness on the horizon, like there always is after the initial disappointment. Friday is day 205, October 22. It’s a catch up day but I’m feeling pretty rough. The allergies turned into a full fledged cold. I’m reflective, thinking about things in general, things that could have should have would have been if other things weren’t. I tend to do that often. Probably a real waste of my time. I chose a ribbon yarn, orange, black, blue and green in color. It blends and reminds me of sunsets and sunrises. One thing ends and another begins. And so it goes. And I wonder, if I could, would I just unravel it all and start again.
At the Copa, Copacabana…


  1. Did you write the story about the old lady? It is beautiful - I can totally picture her! I especially love the comparison to knitting a mistake at the beginning..."But she’s gone too far to fix it now".... she keeps going, just like in real life.

    I didn't know you were doing the knitayear thing - can't wait to see your final product!

  2. Thanks Miss B! Yes, I made her up with a little help from Barry Manilow! ha ha I am doing the knitayear. I divided it up because I didn't know what to do with a mile long strip. It's been interesting and kind of fun!

  3. Thanks for stopping by Vicki! Glad you liked!

  4. You're too sweet Beverly! You know, a little different but that could be us! ha ha

  5. You are so awesome, my friend! I am so impressed that you have continued the knitayear! Can't wait to see the finished product! Loved the Lola story, she's one of my favorites, too!

  6. Great story, Jamye. So touching and sad in a melancholy way. Reminded me of Delta Dawn - the song. You should be writing for a living!

  7. Great story. It helps that Manilow is involved (big fan). I crave a knitted scarf when I look at your pics. Seriously :) Great stuff!

  8. @Debi...thanks for stopping by! I'm going to go to the end on the knitayear so you'll see it! Maybe in Dallas!

  9. @Nikki...thanks! I'm having fun with the blog but I think I might better keep my day job! ha ha Glad you stopped by!

  10.! What a great surprise! And thanks for the kind words. You just let me know on that scarf craving...I can fix you up!