When my phone rang last Thursday and I saw “Morehouse Farm” on the caller id, I knew what it meant. I heard Albrecht say my name, then closed my eyes and waited to hear the words. Margrit, his wife, my friend, had died that morning.
I last spoke to Margrit in late September. She had just undergone a new treatment, her sister was with her, and she was feeling good. We planned a visit for the following week, but when I called to confirm, she told me it wasn’t a good day.
Margrit is gone—yet somehow I can still hear her strong voice clearly inside of me. I can hear her telling me about her lusciously soft Morehouse Farm merino wool yarn the first time we met, at what I think was the very first Stitches knitting conference around 1990. I can hear her calling a group of us to come quickly to the barn the first time I visited the farm, so we could see a baby lamb being born. I can hear her congratulating me when my husband and I were married, when I signed the contract for my first book, when my son was born. I can see her chasing a peacock out of harm's way in the road and back into her yard, arranging a yarn display in her own very precise way, enjoying a glass of wine outside at sunset with Albrecht, and, of course, I can see her knitting.
For over twenty years, Margrit, a woman I met over a skein of yarn, was a friend and an inspiration. Self-assured, hardworking, generous, creative, passionate, pragmatic—she showed me the kind of person I want to be. She showed me what a good life looks like.
Today I cast on stitches for a winter hat with her yarn. I know that would please her. So I knit to say good-bye to her and I knit to hold onto her.
Margrit had many friends and fans around the world. If you are among them, then you should know that Morehouse Farm Merino, Margrit's legacy, will continue. Also, Albrecht and Margrit's sister, Maja, are planning a celebration of her life on Thursday, October 29, 3-5PM, at the historic Elmendorph Inn in Red Hook, New York. If you would like to attend, email firstname.lastname@example.org to let them know. In lieu of sending flowers, they ask that you donate to Margrit's favorite charity, The Nature Conservancy (www.nature.org).