TNNA was awesome.  The end.

No, really, it was great!

As I’ve noted before, this was my first summer TNNA.

When the winter TNNA is in Long Beach, I can simply commute to it, so going is a no-brainer.  Columbus takes a bit more planning, costs a bunch more, and takes more time when you figure in travel.  I couldn’t find a direct flight from LAX to Columbus (I’ve since heard there’s a redeye on Delta, but I can’t sleep well on planes AND I heard it was very pricey), so flew Southwest with a layover in Chicago.

I got to the airport early then realized, after going all the way up to the security guy (who was super sweet), I only had one of two boarding passes.  My dumb mistake.  I had to run downstairs, print out the missing boarding pass, then run back upstairs.  The TSA guy had told me to come back to his line & to cut to the front, which I did (apologizing all the way, but everyone was really nice).  Security itself was a breeze, then I found my gate.  Plenty of time to spare.

And then…I looked up from organizing my stuff….and there she was.  Michelle, of Fickleknitter fame!  On my flight!  To be on both my flights!  I had a traveling companion.  What was going to be, at best, around 8 hrs or so of relatively boring travel all of a sudden turned into a fun time (both our fears of flying aside).  I had paid for Earlybird check in, so nabbed seats near the front of the plane so we could sit together.  I somewhat pity the other guy who took the window seat LAX /Chicago (the Chicago/Columbus guy was a bit creepy, so no pity for him), because Michelle and I talked nonstop for each flight.

After getting all our bags, Michelle’s friend Helen was able to drop me off at the Cooperative Press house (which you can see here, which is unfortunately NOT available for next year).  I met up with Andi (KnitBrit), then we went to dinner at Knead, where I had the MotherClucker sandwich (saved half for later), salad, a beer, and about half of Andi’s fries.  YUM!  I got to meet some of Andi’s industry friends, which was nice.

After that, we ran into Amy Detjen & Jaala Spiro, who gave us a ride back to the house & hung out a bit. Listen to their podcast here to hear some of what we chatted about!  Anna Dalvi showed up, after having driven for HOURS, and I gave her the remaining half of my sandwich.  We all stayed up drinking wine & chatting.   (Read Anna’s TNNA blog post here.)

The next morning we headed to Northstar in Short North for breakfast, awaiting Shannon & Elizabeth’s arrival from Cleveland.  The rest of the day was setting up the booth, having lunch, then hanging out by the pool until it was time to go get ready for Sample It.  (Sample It is when some of the vendors have samples, kits, etc (of course in our case, books) for sale to the yarn store owners.)  We had copies of California Revival Knits (TNNA was the first time I got to see it in person in hardcopy!), Kate Atherley’s Beyond Knit & Purl, and Anna Dalvi’s Shaping Shawls.  We madly signed copies for the folks who purchased copies.  Shannon took some pics of us at Sample It — check out her post here.

After that we headed to Marly Bird’s Yarn Thing Designer Dinner (YTDD).  Marly did an incredibly awesome job, lining up sponsors for the dinner, including donations to these humongous goody bags of yarn, needles, crochet hooks, books (I received a copy of Victorian Lace Today), and even a Namaste Skinny Mini bag.  Check out Alasdair’s TNNA blog post here; he got some pics etc, and was sitting at the table with me, Anna, and the lovely folks from Green Mountain Spinnery and from Soak.

Here’s a quick shot of just some of the swag — I’ve actually put some of it, like some of the needles, Craftsy tape measures, etc, away.  Or already into use.

more to follow….