Projects pause but time marches on. After cutting out the kasuri pieces I had a chance to talk with my daughter about the kind of bag she wants and she decided she would like the muted solids to set the kasuri. Now, that is fine with me but at that point, the project ground to a halt because she needs to come by and pick out the colors that will best go with whatever she plans to use the bag with. I still don't have a clear idea of size and shape so no point in sitting around waiting. Kasuri carton returns to the second floor cupboard.
So ... I needed something to make that time go faster. I thought of a church friend who is having a baby next month. This friend has helped me with the planning for Vacation Bible School and we have worked together on committees. I had remembered seeing a zip-lock baggy of pieces that were left over from an "I Spy" quilt I made many years ago for the grand kids.
They were all cut out and ready to put together ... cute little kid-friendly prints.
I pulled out some yellow solid and marked off some triangles to sew them together and stuck them in my back pack.
I have to say it was a good thing too, because to save money, I tool a very long bus ride and three trains to get to the Railroad museum where my Cub Scouts were gathering. I had lots of extra time there while all the boys took turns driving every simulated train in the whole place. Oh, what a lot of hands-on stuff there was too! Then, there was the long way home plus a 48 minute wait for the bus and heavy traffic back home.
Sunday after church I also had two meetings to sit through plus the hour trip each way. Above is what I got done. It is not a very big piece but I will finish off the star points and add some borders. I am thinking of a little quilt that can be used in a stroller or to put the baby on for changing or to cover when napping, maybe around 45" square. My friend is expecting a little girl and I thought the red heart print would show less dirt than a pink. I would say, a few more trips and meetings and this shouldn't take too long. (If I keep the size under control, I will even be able to baste it without clearing the whole living room of furniture).
Between my house and the train station I am hardly out of sight of one of these. This picture is the barber shop. The rice shop has one too. It is a very aggressive vine and full of little yellow flowers.
The interesting thing is why it is growing in so many places.
The plant is Momordica charantia. In Japanese it is called "Goya", a name that comes from Okinawa.
In English it is called, among other names, "Bitter Melon". And, believe me. that is a very apropos name because it is the bitterest of all fall fruits.
The rice store lady sings its praises, telling me it is picked small and cut and sauteed with meat. The only times I have tasted it, it was quite bitter no matter how it was prepared.
I think of my #2 daughter's garden in the Boston Fens and all the delicious produce she has for eating and giving away ... no goya ... give me zucchini any day, a few cucumbers and summer summer squash and perhaps a handful of cherry tomatoes. Yummmm!