I know my mother knitted woolen diaper pants when I was a child, but my earliest memory of anyone knitting was my Grandfather Gunnar. He was a retired primary school principal and when I was age 3 to 6 years he would babysit me in the afternoons when the kindergarten was closed. My mother worked full time as a teacher but I grew up in the countryside where the majority of the mothers stayed at home and kindergarten was only for ‘socialising’ your child.
I remember being taught in the kindergarten how to make these round woolen tassels and very proudly showing one to my Grandfather. He must have felt inspired, because he immediately brought out his knitting gear and let me choose some yarn myself. He then knitted a hat for me and I made the tassel to go on top. As I remember it the two things took about the same time! It was a most successful experience for me and from my perspective the hat was very much made by myself.
I wore this hat for a long time but must eventually have forgotten about it. When I recently asked my mother for it she was nevertheless able to find it for me in no time – from the family’s basket of dress-up clothes! I don’t know how or why it had ended up there, but maybe it was the colour combination chosen by a 5-years-old that had doomed it worthy of a carnival costume.
The outcome of my first knitting experience is now more carefully looked after and hopefully someday I will be able to show it to the family’s next generation and tell them about their amazing great-grandfather, and maybe give them their first experience with knitting.
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