We lost a dear friend at Crazy for Ewe last week. Sweet Ann Hoover passed away Wednesday morning. For about as long as I can remember, Ann has been part of the shop. Looking over years of shop pictures, I tried to remember exactly when I first met Ann, but I could not. I cannot remember any particular day or event heralding her arrival at the shop. She didn’t announcer herself. She wouldn’t have. It wasn’t her way. Ann was an unassuming woman, comfortable with herself, and happiest simply being present. A regular at nearly every shop event from big retreats to Friday morning knitting, Ann was always a pleasant addition to the group.
Early on, Ann bought sock yarn. She had one sock pattern she liked, and she knit the same sock in the same size for every member of her family, regardless of the size of their feet. When I asked her about it, she said simply, “Socks stretch.” A most unfussy, and, as I would discover over the years, a very Ann-like approach. Perhaps that is why she was such a fan of the beautiful, but unpredictable, Noro. She let the colors do what they do, and she managed imperfections as they came, with patience and grace, as she did everything in her life.
Ann was most recently working on a cozy plum sweater. I had helped her get the neckline right last month. She was in from time to time, and on her last visit, Ginni helped her. I was busy at the computer. I should have stopped what I was doing. I should have sat down at the table and visited with her. If I’d known it would be the last time I would see her, I most certainly would have. But that’s the thing. Life is unpredictable, and we never know when it’s the last time we will see someone we care about. I still cannot believe Ann is gone. Regret is a powerful teacher, reminding us never to take for granted the availability of a friend or other loved one.
Goodbye, sweet, Ann. I will miss seeing you in the shop and around the table. You were always welcome here.