I was packing up my sewing supplies this last Sunday to go and sew with my friendship group. I carry my smaller sewing machine in the back of my car; "Have Sewing Machine: Will Travel." But I do not have a duplicate of every tool I use so I have to prepare for our "sew days" and pack what I think I will need, including the project(s) I will be working on. Sunday morning I was doing just that and uncovered a roll of toilet paper stuck in one of my shelves behind some fabric. It stopped me for a moment.
When I was first asked to join this group of friends to sew, we met in a rec room where one of the members lived. We are officially called The Sew Nuts. Kinda corny, I know, but I didn't pick it and the guild is fraught with silly sounding friendship group names. I have always been pleased to be a part of this group, regardless of their, I mean our, name.
The group goes back many years and people have come and gone, moved away... but the unofficial leader of the group was always a woman by the name of Donna Feagin. It was at her place we met and sewed and ate and talked, kind of like a mini retreat. Sometimes Donna wouldn't even sew; she would just cook for us. But it was a nice respite in the month to get away for 6 hours or so and sometimes we would book the rec hall for an entire weekend, locking our stuff away at night so we wouldn't have to pack up.
The funny thing about this place was that one could never tell if there was going to be toilet paper in the bathroom. The room was used by several groups during the week and if the office put too much toilet paper out, people would just steal it. So, we all got used to packing a roll of toilet paper in our sewing bags. One just never knew... It got to be kind of a joke after a while, especially when we would find ourselves someplace else not needing it. But there they stayed: ever ready.
Last November Donna passed away from pancreatic cancer. We no longer meet in Donna's rec room, but at another member's mobile home park meeting room. It's funny. It took most of us almost a year to take our roles of toilet paper out of our sewing bags.
And there, this last Sunday, was the nicely wrapped roll, waiting to be packed; a silent homage to Donna. I thought of her and her easy smile and good natured personality. Sigh...I miss her.