While a dozen of us prayer shawl ladies sat around the tables yesterday at the Methodist church, a woman entered with a large bag. It held the pieces of an old family afghan. The woman who crocheted it has been dead now for 8 years. She died when she was 95. The afghan itself is over 20 years old.
Here's a close-up of the thinner strips. The dark ones have a popcorn stitch, which is lovely. Also note the lattice weave stitch used to join all the strips and panels together. It's a very lovely stitch, about 1" wide. This lattice weave joining is what the elderly lady did not do -- she barely started it before she discontinued her work on the afghan.
So yesterday, I sat down to the work. I laid it all out and chose where to begin. I started at exactly the final stitch the elderly woman had last done, held her last stitch in my fingers. Her slender "0" hook was still in the yarn. I tied on some new yarn, undid her last stitch and made it my first stitch, and moved into her world. It was a slightly surreal experience.
I completed some of the joining stitch; here it is: