Archive for the ‘socks’ Category


May 14th, 2015 Comments off

today it was ICE 202 from Basel to Dortmund which we boarded in Mannheim. Alternative call sign is LH3437/3608.   The S3 from Heidelberg was packed with Fußball fans easy to spot with team jerseys and beer bottles in hand. Mind you that this is 0920 on a Thursday morning. It also happens to be a holiday of the Christian variety. No clue what a holy body has to do with beer.

On the travel front – it is home to Frankfurt Airport to JFK to Supershuttle to Manhattan. The Youngest (called by various names over the years from Ms Copper, Ms Pink, Maus ..) graduates from Pratt tomorrow afternoon. The Commencement Exercise is being held at Madison Square Garden.

At the end of the weekend I will become a moving target with no more than a few days in any one location until mid-June.  I can view it as making it challenging to hit a moving target or maximal infliction on friends and relatives. I will leave it up to you to decide.

I’ve been spending my time in the Lufthansa lounge after bidding farewell to George (booked late, on the Lufthansa flight to Newark) sorting computer files and contemplating starting the first pair of socks.  72 stitches rather than 56-60. I can do the math, but would rather not in terms of how many more stitches are involved per sock…. Oh, well, at least I don’t have size US 14 feet so this is only a short term challenge.

ordinary guy color

ordinary guy color

Dark green, bit of brown and maybe a speck of grey but not sure. Since I have literally more than a dozen small balls of yarn the stripe pattern should be quite interesting. I am thinking 7/1 rib or maybe slip stitch so that I don’t go completely numb. I don’t really think I have knit a pair of socks since 2007 and the 52 pr challenge. As should be obvious, I still have a lot of hand knit socks…

I’ll update when I have arrived in NYC.

(Flight was fine – I was upstairs on the 747 where it was extremely quiet without a child in the place. Almost 1/2 the seats were empty which means I could move over – watch out the window and not worry about dumping coffee on my neighbor or losing a knitting needle more than a few times on the floor. Note to self – black carbon needles -even those DPs with silver points are hard to see on the floor…

Took the SuperShuttle into town to find Miriam hanging out with her dad at the hotel).

Categories: Knitting, socks, Travel Tags:


August 2nd, 2013 11 comments

Doing too much laundry in the heat (36°C in the shade) including running a couple of loads through the dryer before intelligence kicked in might just be my only excuse. I was sick of the pile of dirty things on the floor and the mess of the laundry room. Additionally I needed laundry baskets so I went hunting.

And that must have been when insanity struck. There were a number of partly full baskets stacked around my husband’s side of the closet. Consolidating them was simple. I had started with the thought that I might even put some of it away but the realization hit me with exceeding rapidity. The shirts were crumpled – it was going to be iron or re-wash. Duh – no decision there. The rest could be folded quickly. Almost, but not quite. Socks do not fold quickly.

By the time I had them all gathered up, those sucks socks had multiplied into dozens and dozens of single smug individuals daring me to make a fuss. So back I went to the laundry room to gather up all the orphans and give them a wash in the next load. If I was going to do this – might as well maximize the results and toss the rest.

months and months - or years? of socks

months and months – or years? of socks


So I informed the socks who were trying to slither out of sight under the couch or inside pairs of jeans. Match or be discarded, I informed them. They sneered at me in their multi-sized, colored, and shaped glory. Make us!

So I started the division. It became rapidly obvious that there were far fewer of white, or had be born out of the package originally white

in at least three lengths

in at least three lengths

Where as the black/brown/grey/navy crew had proliferated exuberantly and had no interest in being made to function in sedate pairs.

instead holding a football scrum in defiance

instead holding a football scrum in defiance

Even an attempt to line them in orderly ranks dissolved in the face of variety of size, shape and design much less position as displayed. Do you know how many shades of black exist?

If I line them all up, they pitch fits and throw themselves on the floor.

If I line them all up, they pitch fits and throw themselves on the floor.

I won a partial battle

and so declared victory.

and so declared victory.

I am going to do a last sort tomorrow in strong daylight before tossing all the excess in the garbage. Wonder how smug those unrepentant partnerless socks are going to be then …..

Categories: family, home, socks Tags:


July 7th, 2013 1 comment

In a universe long long ago and far far away my feet didn’t swell. Not after a train ride, hours in the car or a transatlantic flight. I used to look at those old ladies with bulging toes, grooves cutting into the dorsums of their feet and shake my head secure in my youth and health.

Then I had four children and several decades of traveling. No longer quite as young and infused with so much arrogance reality has struck (of course I am sure that it has been aided & abetted by a couple of DVTs ~ 15 years ago). But support stocking have taken the place of funky and fashionable socks for traveling. Basic black is elegant, right?

heavy duty calf highs

heavy duty calf highs

I don’t care if I have to take off my shoes and walk across the dirty floor at security screening. It doesn’t bother me in the least to have someone else look at my sandals with socks. I know have the certainty of years and — I don’t have fat toes at the end of the day.

Categories: socks, Travel Tags:

Not always better

March 27th, 2010 1 comment

Some days it sees that everyone is in favor of newer, brighter, shinier. With the assumption that all of the above are better.

It is what leads to stash accumulation, both patterns and yarn.

But sometimes the older and well worn is better.

A hand knit sweater knit from handspun the year the first Lavold book was published. Old, comfortable jeans. And handknit socks knit 15 years ago that still are just the right slouchy fit and color combination for a Saturday spent relaxing.

winning combination

Categories: home, Knitting, socks Tags:


April 29th, 2009 Comments off

Thank you for your patience. I have been doing some knitting. Scattering my time across several projects –

taking a couple of balls of handspun (about 100 gm) and the Harlot’s one row pattern

close up

close up

gave me a nice, scarf

quick scarf

quick scarf

Then there is the first of a pair of socks.

around the heel heading down the foot

around the heel heading down the foot

Finally, there is this

one side

one side

and the other side

and the other side

Audio & Books

Vision in White – Nora Roberts
Callahan’s Key – Spider Robinson
True Detectives – Jonathan Kellerman

Categories: Knitting, socks Tags:

Mac Attack

July 9th, 2008 2 comments

I did it this past weekend. Converted from a PC to a Mac and am having a wonderful time. MacBook-Pro, lots of memory and a decent size hard drive. Screen bigger than what I needed. I would have gone with the Mac Air, but I know better. Without an internal CD/DvD it means an extra piece of equipment to haul, drop, lose or break. Now, it would be even nice if the lovely thing would agree to hook into the wireless network. It has twice, seemingly almost a random event. I have to get organized and get the Mole on Skype and see if we can figure it out together.


My Rattlesnake Creek socks are done. Knit out of one of the German Sock yarns, they are comfy and the cables do a nice job of drawing in all those excess stitches.

close up of Rattlesnake Creek Socks

close up

SKP2008 - pair 3

completed socks


My second Evelyn Clark shawl is complete, only needing blocking.

 Front Side

Front Side

reverse side

reverse side

The beads on the edge (nothing like that last row taking forever) don’t show clearly. I will see what I can do when it is blocked.

The Candle Flame is making progress

  Candle Flame Scarf

And lastly, complete!

Garter Stitch Baby Jacket

Garter Stitch Baby Jacket

knit out of DK weight cotton in alternating stripes of red and blue. I have not a clue where the pattern originated. It would have been nice if I had been able to find the blue to continue the striping up the hood, but I really don’t think it looks all that bad with a solid colour hood.


I started listening to the Arwen Series byTimothy Callahan. It really isn’t bad, and won’t interfere with driving or knitting. But compared to David Weber’s Honor Harrington or Star Trek:Voyager the main character is quite flat. Some men seem to be able to write good heroines and others should stick to heros. Never the less, I can see it appealing to most who like speculative fiction. The first book is the best, the second has real issues and I am not going to bother with the third. (Please note, I still contribute to all but the absolute worst of the books. After all, if I had purchased them in paperback there would have been a cost).

Over London

July 7th, 2008 Comments off

There is London from the air

Along with

the infamous terminal 5

the infamous terminal 5

A colleague who was PSCing back to the states today took his family in my van to the airport. Smart man, he parked it right at the entry in the first row of long term parking. Worked well for both of us – they got themselves to the airport complete with suitcases and dog and I got home in 35 minutes rather than 90+.


There are the SKP2008 round three Rattlesnake Creek socks which occupied part of my time this weekend getting from standing start to the heel of the second sock.

and a couple of repeats more on the Candle Flame Scarf.

Categories: Knitting, socks, Travel Tags:

What is Real?

July 2nd, 2008 3 comments

In one of those Internet phenomenas, I found my thoughts converging between what I have written in the last couple of days, what Fabienne wrote on Monday and some concepts in the Podibook Beautiful Red by M Dursha Wehm.

I don’t find that real life is all that different between those I physically meet and those with whom I maintain an email/blog/phone link. But there are some major changes in how this community is defined for me. That difference I think relates to my age.

In my professional life, I have long been connected by phone with colleagues who I never met face to face. In 1986 when my organization added email capability, this extended to electronic communications. It was only with the advent of USENET and the early Fidob BBSs that this connection passed from the professional domain into the private where I could connect with essentially total strangers with whom I had common interests.

It takes a longer time to grow true friendships in the electronic environment than in a physical world in my opinion. Words can be deceiving and the lack of body language makes checking the veracity of our correspondent a bit trickier. For as many stories of finding soul mates and boon companions, there are balancing horror stories of fraud and deceit.

Sociologically, we haven’t kept up with labels, names or words that describe our new relationships, instead focusing more on what is real and virtual.. To say that we don’t need them begs the question. Definitions lead to common understanding and communications. In the knitting world – there is an understanding when someone says lace weight, fingering or bulky yarn for a project. A podcast is not the same as a YouTube Video.

What do you think? Should we work out words that fill those social gaps between “friend” and “acquaintance” in line with the old penpal which was a clear description of both relationship and method? English to start? Or perhaps to co-opt words from French, German, Hebrew or whatever to fill in those gaps? The fiber community has not been shy about creating and adopting new language (frog, tink, WIP, SIP, UFO). The tech community does it on a daily basis.


Round three was released last night. Since the release time was 1200 in the US, already there are a number of people with theirs completed. I cast on this evening, just completing the cuff of the first sock this evening out of Fortissima Colori.

My printer is out of black ink. I haven’t been able to print the pattern. Will do so in the morning along with my boarding pass and knit on the way to Zurich en route to Majorca.

the last room

The last mess to clean up.
a bit messy


Categories: computers, Prose, socks Tags:


June 20th, 2008 Comments off

There is the good, and the bad.

Let me do the challenging part first.

After finishing up my errands at RAF Croughton, I stopped by Windsor Great Forest on the way home. One of the other US exchange officers lives in the area. I dropped off a bag from the commissary and stayed a few hours to knit and chat. Sally had been making noises about learning to knit socks. Her challenge was getting the hang of double-pointed needles.

So far so good – right?

Think just getting dark and 2145 as I come around the Jolly Farmer round-a-bout and head down the Maultway aka B3015. There are no lights on this road, it has a lot of curves and the left turn that I need is marked on the right. Directly across from the turn, leaving almost no reaction time.

As I start to slow down looking for the turn this idiot comes screaming up behind me and starts to pass. Did I mention that this is on a short curve and that there are not street lights?

Yes, thought I had.

Picture me sweating as a car comes roaring up from around the curve ahead of us.

Does the idiot pull back in?

No, he speeds up and starts to cut right back in. Only issue is that I am already occupying that space.

Wrenching over to the left, I hit the curb, then pop up on it while the idiot pulls away into the dark. I didn’t get his license plate number. As I drive shakily on, I realize that I now have a front left flat tire.

Why should I not be surprised? Good thing that I am only about 200 meters from my destination.

It is now 2200 as I come knocking on John’s door. Luckily, they were not yet in bed and had a flash light. John is taller and out weighs me by a good 30 kilo. Maybe I should have objected more when he took over the majority of the tire changing, but I was pretty well wiped at that point.

After all of that, I had hardly anything for mail.

The Package

There was, however a package from Roseann, marking my death in Sock Wars III.

The contents of the package

there were of course, the Detonators –

The Detonators

along with a lovely hand woven pouch, some knitter wristlets, tea bags and the balance of the yarn.

On the feet

I tried them on. They are lovely. Knit so tightly that her fingers must have bled. I have narrow feet and I have never had a pair of socks fit that were knit on 72 stitches (usually about 56 is my number). The toes are a bit big but this is an issue with the pattern. Since they are a lovely cotton blend sock yarn, it won’t matter in summer sandals a bit. They are bright, cheerful and a great pair for summer.


On to Full Share by Nathan Lowell.


And sometimes it is just a whimsy of seeing a bit of brickwork set into a regular hedge that gets my fancy. Made ordinary by the usual refuse containers. Even if it is located in Windsor Forest – whic is property of the British Royal Family.

Property GateAnd through the arch


Categories: Arches&Doors, Books & Tapes, Knitting, socks Tags:

Berlin Muster

June 11th, 2008 Comments off

I am trying very hard not to think about the garden. The grass has gotten really long.
just a bit long, the grass

Trying to mow it with a push-mower takes more than a bit of effort and results in something looking pretty chewed.
chopped  up and chewed
I hung it. Much better that I go and knit!


My SKP2008 second socks are done. The pattern was a 16 row lace that I did not ever manage to memorize. As a result, I was something like the 86th person to finish up the socks, rather than in the top 10. I also will admit not having started them right away. The yarn is Austerman’s Step. It is lovely, and considering that I only paid 6,95DMEuros a ball, it was a great deal and I wish I had purchased more when I was in Munich. Now why am I thinking in the wrong currency?

SKP2008 - Berlin Muster

On the feet and an attempt at detail
Pattern Detail

Books and Audio Books

To tell you the truth – I have been mostly reading rather than listening. And reading junk. So I am not going to share the list unless something turns up that you really might want to read.

Categories: Books & Tapes, home, socks Tags:

Can’t eat it

June 6th, 2008 Comments off

Around the office today was the usual collection of watchers –
The Spaniel, hard at work
Tiger Skin

Then there was the chance to briefly enter the Medal Room
The Medal Room
with walls lined with paintings, photos and shadow boxes of medals. Some are originals, donated by families, others are reproductions of the military awards of various key British Army Medical Personnel over the centuries.

Sock Wars III

Sent off this pair of Detonators knit out of STR Silky Tide Pool –
Detonators for Peety
toward the US while at the Mailroom this afternoon. Best I can figure, since I sent them out regular priority mail is that they will take at least a week and probably longer to arrive. This is fine with Peety, she is not in a hurry to be killed off. I admire her dedication, since she has finished up four kills. For what ever reason, I had so many flaking out around me that most of my time was spent doing little but chatting on the forums and waiting.


A Faux Chocolate Tunnel
From Wednesday’s adventures in Bournville. Passing under the chocolate arch, there was no point in taking a bite.

Views and News

June 5th, 2008 4 comments

Have you ever noticed the relationship between the weight of your bag and the length of time it has been over your shoulder?

Especially in the case of a back pack carelessly slung over one shoulder; the epitome of cool.

Is it arithmatic? Exponential? Or logarithmic, that increase of weight over time.

I can make a case for any of the above.

At the beginning of the day, fresh and full of energy with all those essentials packed carefully, your set off on your journey. The beverages are drunk, the snacks eaten as the day progresses. Perhaps a round or 40 are knit on that sock and a few photos are taken. The bag weighs heavier as the hours pass. Nothing has been added, no shopping, purchases or souvenirs accumulate for the return journey.

So why does that pack drag you down so much at the end of the day, heavier it seems by far as you trudge from the train station through town back to base?

Out the Windows

At work

Office View

And at home. Before you ask – all the mowers on my street seem to be non-operational. If it rains much more, the swath that the Mole accomplished when he was here is going to disappear.

Back View - the whole viewBack View

Sock Wars III Continues

For the affectionadoes – Fran even developed a spreadsheet. I trust that none of you will use it for Spam.

There aren’t any Obits today. There are 700 (as of 2330) fallen knitters, they are just not posting. Waah.

I have had a lovely evening – listening to old Podcasts and knitting these socks. Took out the first toe just in case and I am now doing them both at the same time to make sure that I have enough yarn. STR is not generous with Silkie yardage. A progress picture – and I will post the completed pix before they go in the mail.


The Viking Ship Sweater

On hold for just the day – but this is the catch-up photo, you can see one half of the body completed. The second side is lacking four rows. Since I am doing these back and forth to accomplish the neck shaping, they are a bit slower (two handed purling anyone?).

Viking Ship Sweater

Berlin Muster – SKP2008

Back to these tomorrow –
Berlin Muster


June 4th, 2008 3 comments

Bournville wasn’t much of anything, just a few houses and such located along Bourn Brook. Then, when a major business relocated here in 1879 from Birmingham, the name was Frenchified, because anything French was cool at the time.

The business was Cadbury’s Chocolate. Walking around there today – it appears to be the town that Cadbury’s built, or owns, or both.

Starting with the train station
Bournville Train Station

And the town with both offices and funded buildings and parks.
Lodge 1Playing Field
In their defence, the Quaker family that started Cadbury’s provided support, medical benefits and time-off, long before it was the norm for business. It might be one factor – besides good products – in why they went from 200+ employees when they relocated to Bournville to the eight thousand UK employees of today.

But as far as Cadbury’s World as a place to visit? I’d save my money. Might be decent for the under 10 crew. It is not as well set up or as interesting as the chocolate factory near Hamburg that we visited a number of years ago with Kathy and Hans.

There was actually minimal learning, heavily sweetened with self-promoting information with little for exhibits and few demos.
Store Front

It ended with a ride reminiscent of Its a Small World After All (Disney). I will just share the pictures of Beanville without further comment.
Bean 1BeanvilleMore BeanvilleAnd more garrish coloursNot in my house

In case you are wondering what in the world I was doing – my meeting ended early and I was looking for something to do before catching my train home.

I also saw a little of Birmingham; featuring modern side by side with stately buildings.
Modern BuildingsTraditional Building

There are market halls and coffee shops

Market BuildingsCoffee Shop

And then there is the Bullring.
Bullring Mall building

It is a Mall – complete with high end shops and a Candy Bull
Interior of the Mallthe Candy Bull

Sock Wars III

First, my new knit weapons. STR Silky in Tide Pool for Peety
Socks for Peety

By the time I rolled back into Camberley I was a couple of repeats into the second sock – with only the toe to kirchner on the first sock (after checking on the shape with said victim). There are major size issues with the pattern, and I wanted to make sure these actually might fit her.

685 knitters down and too many to go. Some people are only bothering to quit or declare themselves dead when pressed. Makes it take a lot longer. I think that they just want socks knit for them without doing any knitting themselves.

Sock Wars Obit

Posted by the mentioned Lucille –

This, written by one of my dulcimer students today:
Dearly beloved,
We are gathered here today to mourn, no, to celebrate, the feet of clay, no, I mean the feet of Lucille, who knitted valiantly through the bloody Sock Wars, of which we have heard so much. The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but it can never forget what they made here: sockssockssockssockssocksssssss……………
OK, enough of that, gang. Let’s go raid her stash before her family gets back to her house from the boneyard! We’re off!!!!!!!!
Yours in sorrow,

Categories: socks, Travel Tags:


June 3rd, 2008 Comments off

Now that my ears have quit ringing – Just a collection of this and that.

Why were my ears ringing?

Taking a break in the middle of the afternoon – I buzzed home to pick something up. This guy in a suit knocks on the door. Since I am live on a secure (yah, right) base, I knew it was neither a door-to-door salesman or a proselytizer. It turned out to be the smoke detector guy. Apparently the smoke alarm system has been turned off since some time in 2006.

I personally don’t care, but what the heck?

Take it back! I take it back. For the next 30 minutes my ears were treated to shrieking alarms as he tested one detector after another. The system is set so that if anyone of the alarms trigger – they all howl. There is one in almost every room. That makes for 10 of the bleeding things.

I gratefully shut the door, the proud dweller in a house with a functioning box and lots of tested alarms.

An hour later, the alarm goes off, but quits after a few minutes.

At 1730 this happens again and I am treated to a third iteration after six. About 1930, the system goes off. And it does not quit. I have no instructions and taking a hammer to the box seems a bit drastic. I open up the box and contemplate pulling wires. I pull the fuse, nothing happens; the high pitched shriek from the box blends with the horrible warbling siren.

Wearing the nice set of hearing muffs used for mowing the lawn, I unsuccessfully search for the emergency number. Can’t find it and can’t live with the noise. My neighbor finds the work order desk number and they tell me that they will get me an electrician out this evening. 20 minutes later, the electrician calls, then says he will be out in the morning.

No way, says I, can you hear that racket?


Well, could you sleep with all that noise?

No, and he appears about half an hour later. It takes pulling the fuse out of the walll and out of the box before the system shuts up.

At this point, my evening is shot and my thoughts are completely scattered.

This and That

    Juggling for world peace is a UTube production by the partner of a fellow Sock Wars Combatant.

    Elysbeth reminded me of this post -reiterating the main points by Dr Gordon Livingston.

    2. We are what we do. We are not what we think, or what we feel, or what we say, we are what we do. Actions do indeed speak louder than words. If you are unhappy with a particular part of your life, take a strong look at what you are doing to be happier.

    is the key in my view. Goes right along there with my make the world a better place philosophy.

Sock Wars III – Obits

The death toll rises. 662 as of the end of the day. It was a quiet day in the Obits –

I’m dead. After 2 weeks of checking the mail every day (and calling home to see if I had socks in the mail), my suffering has ended.

So – the following exchange occured –


I think Mr. Nash said, “…but liquor is quicker.”

A knitter could be quicker ….with vodka!! Is it allowed to rewrite poetry??? As long as I give credit to the original poet???? I thought the “knitter” line would be more appropriate under these sad circumstances.

Which reminds me – I have a target! A lovely person who needs to be a-sox-inated.

Viking Ship Sweater

Remember this? I actually have one side done and have only five rows to finish on the other side of the neck. Plus a small bit of duplicate stitching (in preference to multiple row messy drop down or frogging). Besides – you deserve a picture for reading this far.

Viking Ship Sweater 3 June 08

Audio Books

Truth or Dare by Jayne Ann Krentz. I needed something that didn’t not require a lot of thought while I knit.


Sock Wars Update

June 2nd, 2008 2 comments

Sock Wars III – Obits

Obviously, we are still having a good time with this. I finally heard back from my victim. Not only has she fallen to death by sox – but has major things going on in the family and is now days beyond the 48 hours required to pass on her SIP. That meant an email to the Supreme Commander in Ireland in order to be able to start on a new pair for my downstream target.

There lies Benbah
vacant orbs gazing at the stars
Beautiful socks of pink and blue (and a few more colours too)
Adorn her cooling corpse

But wait!

There in her hand
A postal receipt does stand
Her death by Yarnwitch came too late
to save NewbieSockWarrior
from the same fate

Only just!

I have been killed
By women who are skilled.
I died not of the Pox
But death by socks.

VEELAU, died happily today when she opened her mailbox this afternoon after a horrific Monday at work. She was a happy soul that loved to knit…socks. She leaves behind a stash that she never had a hope of cleaning up; not to mention a refridgerator in the same state. She will be laid to rest wearing a FANTASTIC pair of socks knit with skill by another. “When given lemons, make lemonade – then add vodka.”



Listing to Betty – some of those pilots sound all too familiar.

Audio Books

Rusty Nail – JA Kornrath

This and That

May 30th, 2008 Comments off


If flying stories appeal to you – go listen to Betty in the Sky with a Suitcase.

Sock Wars III – Obits

Another valiant warrior
Has fallen on the field
No more yarn will pass her hands-
No needles will she wield.

Done in by Bakerina
With weapons of purest spun
She joins the ranks of the zombies-
Her time in the war is done.

This sad demise has proven
Her fear of the mailman was real
Goodbye to dear Arachknits-
She’s turned her final heel.

30 May 2008
1503 PST
PacNorthwest Network News: TOP STORY


The victim was found by her husband face down at their mailbox clutching a small slip of paper in one hand and the package the socks came in in the other. The slip of paper reads as follows:

Where needles and yarn were found,
She was sure to be around.

Socks by twos and scarves galore,
K2P2, SSK and K2tog the stitches she adored.

Then the mail flap fell,
such the dreaded sound!

lives not to fight another round!

The victim was said to have been involved with an international ring of ‘sock traffickers’. The circumstances surrounding her untimely demise have not been fully disclosed at this time. The victim’s husband and family have no further comment.

She is survived by 2 children, a supportive and helpful DH, numerous knitting co-workers who are at this time fashioning the death shroud and will undoubtedly fight over the various yarns in her stash.


Mostly this week I have been reading. Seems like it has been a series of paranormals and mysteries. Since I haven’t posted a list for a while, this includes the last 2-3 weeks.
Lover Unbound – JR Ward. Wicked Deeds on a Winter’s Night – Kresley Cole. Evermore – Lynn Viehl. Demon’s Kiss – Maggie Shayne. Elijah – Jacquelyn Frank. Kiss of Fire – Deborah Cooke. Night Season – Eileen Wilks


From Suomenlinna, the connecting tunnels from the ammo bunkers and firing slits.
Tunnels between ammo bunkersconnections between the ammo bunkersarches from the other end of the ammo bunkers


Categories: socks Tags:


May 29th, 2008 1 comment

Another bush is blooming.
Purple blooming

After a quiet morning, I spent the afternoon attending briefings about the last rotation in Herrick (Afghanistan) and the lessons identified. It is a subtle but important distinction between the US and the UK. On the US side, it is all about lessons learned. The implication being that the item was discovered, detailed and solved. (So why do many of us talk about Lessons Learned, Lessons Forgotten?) The UK implication is that some item has been found – now on to capture, audit & action. It will be interesting to see if the basic attitude that underlies the nomenclature will extend to a greater success in the process.

Sock Wars – Obits

Here lies dead Darth, who started out as Anakin Socknitter. Trained by the Jedi socknitters, she had the potential to be great. But crossing over the to Dark Side, she killed 2 worthy sock knitting opponents, and finally was finished off by Spiderknits herself. During the war she taught herself a new method of knitting 2 socks at a time of 2 circs and had her fastest sock knitting time ever. Though the war is over for her, the memory will last forever and has been commemorated in her blog… (it will be updated on 5/30 with pics of final SIPs and the socks that killed her)

She should have used the FORCE!!!


Ok, I purchased four different yarns while in Helsinki – two from Cypressi and two from (blank mind here).

The first is Finn Wool – similar to Kauni, but a three ply to be knit on 3-4mm needles, both of these are natural coloured wool. One goes from creams to brown, the other is shades of greys.

Finn Wool

Then there is green, 3-3,5mm needle to be the contrast for the pinks I have already spun. The color in the picture is not that great, but is really a lovely rich green.

Green Wool

I found blue –
Navy Yarn

and finally some Finn merino/silk blend. I might even knit a shawl.
Lace Weight Yarn

Categories: Knitting, military, socks Tags: , ,

Socks Update

May 28th, 2008 Comments off

Work, as you can tell, is not exciting.


While wandering around, looking for something else (like a source of Finwool outside of Finland), I came across a lovely site on the Northern European Sheep Breeds. Not only have they correlated history with current sheep, but have also accomplished the supporting scientific analysis. More breeds of wool to sample?

Sock Wars

No, I haven’t forgotten about it. Or been killed. Still alive here. My assassin apparently died right before I left for Finland, sending off the unfinished socks that she had started upstream to the person who had killed off her.
My target apparently finally got her socks, and has socks on the way to me.


Kneedle Meister is now at peace.

There she lies brokenhearted.

Got her socks and ‘poof’ departed.


Think I forgot to mention that the second pattern in the Sock Knitting Olympics was released 1 May. Since there seemed to be some pattern errors, I held off till it was sorted out. I am recycling the yarn I had selected for Sock Madness – much happier with this pattern called Berlin Mȕster.

Berlin Sock Pattern from SKP2008

Still Alive

May 27th, 2008 Comments off


Just a few more photos – I liked the architectural details, and the lovely sense of humor. It might be reflective of a city and culture that found itself under the yoke of Sweden for over 700 years. Followed immediately by the Russians; the main Finnish Defence seems to be the sauna.

Church of the Rock

And then there was the Church in the Rock. Simple and elegant – even the presence of all the tourists didn’t detract from its function. From the outside, there is only the ceiling and the rock visible. From the inside, the walls grow up out of the rock. Elegant, there is minimal wooden furnishings and the organ.

Sock Wars III

The only package waiting for me was some wool. No socks – I am still alive in the competition.

Alas, Achillescat, has gone on to Zombiehood, being assoxinated. She left behind for her assassin, to finish a sock knit only to the heel turn. Shelley, who was assassinated by Achillescat at least sent a finished sock. Her son and daughter cheered her death, and her DH was heard to say, “At least it won’t interfere with classes next week”. She also left this thought, to be sung to the tune of “I May Not Go to Heaven, Just Send Me Home to Texas”.

When I die, I may not go to Heaven,
I don’t know if they let those with SIPs in.
If they don’t, just send me to my LYS, yeah,
Because kipping is the closest I’ve been.

My socks they are quite beautiful,
They killed me fair and square.
The ones that I am sending Sharon
Need work to finally get there.

When I die, I may not go to Heaven,
I don’t know if they those with SIPs in.
If they don’t, just send me to my LYS, yeah,
Because kipping is the closest I’ve been.

Categories: socks, Travel Tags:

Leeds Castle

May 17th, 2008 2 comments

The good thing about rain is that it keeps away some of the other tourists. Rather than give you long descriptions, I will just tell you to go here to read about the Castle, think about Henry VIII and know that people lived here as late as the 1960s. Yes, there is a golf course. No, I didn’t make any effort to take pictures of it. These photos are in gallery form. To see better, click the button in the upper right had corner of the post to eliminate the sidebars. To “bigger” a picture, click on it. I will build a page in the next day that includes all of these, plus photos of the grounds, the aviary, the duckery and the sheep.

Sock Wars III

The Obits continue. The shortest and clearest is

Dead, dead, dead.
Darn, Darn, Darn.
Killed two before I perished.
By beautiful Tofutsies Yarn.

Friends, Enemies, and Cannibals:

The Black Priestess of the Divine Faustus was slain, laid low by the hand of the most Fearsome and Deadly Tracy. Tracy is known (or not known) by her silence on the forums; rather than spend time in idle banter, she watches, she stalks, she knits, and when the moment is perfect SHE STRIKES! For her pains Tracy will receive incomplete socks in a really awful combination of pastels, but at least she will have the opportunity to try knitting with corn fiber yarn (Maizy).

The Black Priestess is survived by two large dogs, five cats and a rooster. The dogs are distressed by her departure from this life, but the cats think there is enough meat on her carcass to keep them all going for a few weeks, at which point they will kill and eat the dogs, plus now they have all that yarn to play with.

The rooster has a brain roughly the size of half a pea, and has no opinion on the matter.

This post is long enough. I will hold the fiber for tomorrow.

Oops, so this is Reading

May 16th, 2008 Comments off

Sometimes one’s day just does not go as planned.

Right before bed, I had reminded the Mole that we needed to leave NLT 0700 since I really wanted to make dental sick call. At just a few minutes before I wanted to leave, I realized that I had not heard a sound from upstairs.

No surprise, he was sound asleep. Very unhappy when woken to find that he did not have an hour to get ready. And you think teenage girls can take a long time?

It was drizzling, trucks were doing strange things on the roadways, and we were listening to Wiskey Sour. The upshot was that I zigged when I should have zagged and didn’t notice till I saw the exit for Reading. To compound things, instead of just heading around the traffic circle and getting back on the M4 in the correct direction, I decided to attempt a short cut through Reading.

Two times around downtown Reading before we could get out of there (would you believe that there is rush hour traffic in Reading?) and we finally got back to the A33 and found the M4. Lost an hour literally driving in circles.

Needless to say, by the time we got to Croughton, it was after dental sick call hours. They took pity on me. Said I could wait, or have a real appointment time at 1300. I opted for the appointment and we headed off to run errands. Just as I went into the PX, the fire alarm went off. 20 minutes later, they let us back in, all still clueless as to why it rang.

Commissary, then a run by the library which was still officially closed. They are supposed to be finished with the relocation by Wednesday. Since I will be out of town next week figured it would be nice to return the new best sellers and at least some of the DVDs.

Got the tooth looked at. We decided to hold off on drilling a little while longer. I don’t mind a bit.

Came home. The rain is good for somethings.
Rain does some things well.

with the occasional glimpse of sky

Evening Sky

Sock Wars III

I am still watching the forums and howling with laughter. The dead are mounting and the obits are a hoot:

The Dead Dulcinea wrote:
Here lies Dulcinea Quixote de la Mancha, cruelly felled by a fatal case of Sox Pox!

She leaves behind her loving husband, Don (a good guy but seriously delusional), and their children Aldonza Duet, Don Dos, Juan, Pedro, Miguel, Angel and Sam (who bears a striking resemblence to Sancho, Don’s faithful but apparently not so trusty sidekick).

She also leaves behind her best friend Aldonza (the barmaid and part-time hooker), Sancho (we know what kind of friend he was) and a pet dragon, Spike.

Dulcinea loved the outdoors in the frozen tundra called Wisconsin, especially tilting at windmills. She pretty much tilted at everything else after Aldonza poured another one. When not tilting, she was known to wage war with socks.

She’ll be buried in the family plot, wearing her beautiful, Sox Pox Socks!

She leaves her craftroom of wondrous yarns to her knitting friends, figuring they’ll duke it out over who gets what.

Please feed Spike on your way out… you don’t want to walk past a hungry dragon!

and Tiny Tyrant:

Interred May 14, 2008 by Knit Picks Memories in Rocky Mountain Dusk
Tiny is survived by her husband who refused to get the mail that
day and spare her from her fate. Her three dogs, Cliff the Mutt,
Oscar the Dog and Scrat the Brat, who all allowed the mail man
to deliver the package and four felines who simply worry about
where their next meal is coming from since dad is absent minded
about set meals. Her stash is not available as she intends to
come back from the dead and haunt her husband and leave yarn in
all the rooms of the house and needles in the most unsuspecting

I am sure that I will be “dead” sometime early next week. Must think of something to say.

Audio Books

Finished up Whisky Sour and started on Bloody Mary, both by J A Konrath. They are funny and Dick Hill is perhaps my favorite reader of all time.


No idea why this is hereand from the back

Right near the end of my road, a trail winds back into the woods. This arch, made of long dead greenery wound around a frame stands by itself. No clue how long it has been standing, nor why. Only near object is this strange looking shelter, tucked between two huge trees with toes dug deep in the earth.

tree feet

Making socks last

May 15th, 2008 Comments off

When you put time and effort into hand knitted socks, you want them to last.

Really soft yarns, even knit quite tightly, don’t have the strength to stand up to foot abuse. Often they are spun woolen rather than worsted with characteristics that make them wonderful garment yarns. Sock legs? My sock cuffs and legs don’t wear out. (We will not speak about the guys in my house who think the way to put on a sock is to grab it by the cuff and yank.)

But when it comes to toes and heels – well fitting shoes should not bother my socks and baring my own stupidity (where is that nail clipper anyway?) socks should last. Coming apart is a construction fault, but wearing through? Unfortunately, I am seeing this happen with the 100% merino or wool yarns, and not with the commercial sock yarns (excepting those Indie dyers’ whose base is a good quality sock yarn).

Deb recently had the experience of a lovely pair of socks developing a gaping hole. As I looked at her sad picture, I realized the advantage of the afterthought heel. She can just frog and reknit with a small amount of fiddling.  Doesn’t work with my favorite heels.

Where am I going with this? I have a lot of sock yarn from Indie dyers. I enjoy the colour, the uniqueness and supporting cottage industry, but I don’t like socks that wear out.

I wear my clothes for practically ever (hint, anyone who wears a uniform to work on a daily basis is not constrained to keep up on fashion). I have a skirt, older than the eldest (now 29), in my wardrobe that I still wear. I have turtlenecks that are still wearable after 10 years.

I have dozens of pairs of handknit socks. Socks should last, especially when I have enough choices that an individual pair is not getting worn every week.

I used to add in the reinforcement yarn in toes and heels. Only JaWoll and Lang still seem to include it. I can buy it from Regia as the German shops still carry it. I have been know to make my own reinforcement yarn (it is two extra plys – I am a spinner, exactly how hard is it separate a couple of meters of yarn?) or use wooly nylon.

What is the catch? No mater what you do, the color or pattern on the toes and heels is not going to match the rest of the sock unless it is a solid. If I had planned on a contrast heel, it is not an issue.

Yes, I know I just told you that I am not a fashion person, but this is a rare time when a bit of OC strikes. I like things to balance and I am not a real fan of bulk.

I think the 100% wools and merinos are going to languish a while in the stash while I go back to sock yarn.

Sock Wars III

The knitters are slowly being killed off. It is a balance of being able to knit rapidly and having your assassin knit slowly enough to get killed off plus being favored by the tricksters of the Post.

I am still alive, with my target’s socks wending their way from Royal Post to USPS in Texas. We will see.

The forums are hysterically funny. Most of us are posting under our aliases. Puns and laughs abound as the ghosts and ghouls just keep coming back. Zombies we think as well. Plus there are those vampires who keep sucking up everyone’s time.

A lot of entertainment for very little money.


Categories: socks Tags:

Spam in cycles

May 14th, 2008 2 comments

Honestly, you wonder that people don’t have better things to do.  Dummy websites that pull posts from around the world based on key words. Mailers that send out dozens of offers for various insurance schemes. Drugs that none of us need or want. I would home that no one would ever answer any of these bogus offers.

I suppose that I should be grateful to somehow be missing all the porn spams.

At the same time, I have no clue why Askimet keeps dumping comments from my friend Carmen in the spam bucket. I might have thought it was because of having a gravatar (Odin is quite the cat) since I have have it set to catch all comments that have links, but this happened before she got the pix uploaded.

There has to be a logical reason why all of this spamming occurs. Someone must bite. Same reason that pfishing is out there, and all the letters from Africa hinting at untold millions should you only help by first opening an account with your own money. (That disappears. And someone might be surprised?)

Sock Wars III

The forums on both Ravelry and the Sock Wars sight have been hilarious. As of shortly before midnight, there were 81 fallen in their socks and comments flying thick and fast. Besides a few rather sour grapes, I have seem prose, poetry, beautiful sock pictures and some really creative obits. Krafty1 went all out in her packaging (and the socks are pretty cool too).


Finished up the last ounce of Temptation and all of the plying. Picture tomorrow, since it would involve going and locating the camera.

We (the Mole and I) braved Tescos for gas and some groceries, dropped off the recycling and made it back home with only one detour. I just love people who ride on your bumper even when you are doing the speed limit.


Would you rather

May 13th, 2008 Comments off

Be looking at this?

backyard this morning

Or this?

looking out the window

Wearing these?

socks and sandals

Or these?

Army Boots

Dressed like this?


Or this?


Working at a computer (hey – you don’t need a picture of that – you have acess to one or you would not be reading this)

Sock Wars III

Or admiring a finished pair of socks for Sock Wars III prior to the run to the post office.

Completed First RoundNice Socks!

At last tally, 31 casualties have been recorded. And that is not counting all the wounded in action (cramped hands, sore shoulders, bleeding fingers).

I am off home, then have the Mole to get from the airport around 2300.

Categories: home, military, socks Tags: ,

Spinning Guilds

May 12th, 2008 Comments off

A Monday back in the office means a number of email accounts to check, a search of the calendar to make sure that I don’t forget anything and a bunch of filing. In other words, booorrrring.

Sock Wars III

I have heard from my assassin. She is in the US. I reached my victim. She is also in the US. Luckily, she is not allergic to wool since her socks are just about done. Without a screaming reason to really hurry, I didn’t knit during breaks today.

Sock Wars III

At the start of today, one sock was complete and the other half way so. (Well, I did tell you that I spent most of yesterday spinning. Pink and hot pink it was with that grey thrown in).

The “dead” count started at 5, since that was the number of those who opted out after the alleged start. From here on in, I suspect the first ones out will be US based who received US based victim’s dossiers on Friday. Could have gotten socks in the mail on Saturday. Or even Sunday if you live near a major airport.

Seems like a lot of people are taking this more seriously than I. Airmailing small packages actually costs the same US or UK post. (under $5). DHL? UPS? FedEx? Not me!


I am in West Surrey. Surrey Heath to be specific. Don’t ask my why my post code says Guilford. There is a local spinning guild which meets occasionally in Farnham. Another spinner (ound through Ravelry) and I went together. The speaker was excellent, funny and dynamic.

The speaker

20 year ago, she and her husband moved into Hampshire. Having a large garden (US this = yard) they decided to get a couple of biological lawnmowers. They had never had animals before. The Shetland Sheep really took over their lives.

She brought about 12 fleece to demonstrate the breed characteristics – never mind that it turns out the breed has literally dozens of recognized colours and patterns. (Lets hear it for the Scandinavian names.)

Just a small sample.

Here is a bit better look at the fleece

But you know what was really amazing? No one, I mean no one brings knitting to the meeting. All those knitters and spinners, they are all worried about offending the speaker. I thought for a moment and asked the question. Not surprisingly, none of them would worry about knitters, they all believe in multitasking.

Perhaps I am just too young for the group?


Lazy Day

May 11th, 2008 Comments off

The blossoms are just about gone from the trees.

Backyard again

Sock Wars III

I forgot to show you my progress on SockWars from Friday evening.

Sock Wars, the pair

Since as of last night, I still didn’t have my target, well taking an updated picture seemed pointless.

Some sense intervened somewhere and the complete list was posted on the website. It was easy to figure out who was your enemy and your target. As it turned out, my first assassin bailed on the play, but I was able to contact the person before her on the list. Having email addresses is so nice! Both are in the US.

Given that I am not making the post till tomorrow and I am much farther than the above, I spent the rest of the day spinning.


I don’t care for Inspector Morse (BBC) but found Hamish McBeth (also BBC) pretty funny. I have a real feeling it is like Lake Wobegone; close enough to the truth to have some reality and far enough away that you can write off a fair amount as stereotypes.


Sock Wars III

May 9th, 2008 Comments off

What is Sock Wars III? you ask.

Well, obviously it is battle 3, following Sock Wars I and Sock Wars II.

It is the usual insane suspects scattered around the globe who all start with a pattern and target at the same time. Knitting as fast as they can, they post off their completed pair to their target, effectively forcing the recipient out of play. The idea is to knock off as many people (playing it forward so to speak) as possible before being “killed” by receiving a pair of socks from your assassin.

It has made a few papers – showing up on Reuters, and elicited some wonderful photos.

A lot of success obviously depends on the post. If your target is local, it is easy. If your assassin is from half way around the world, you might just be golden.

It was supposed to start off at 1200 GMT. Thought I had lucked out because the Supreme Commander lives in Northern Ireland.

The fates were against all of us. Not only had the SC suffered a major death in her family immediately preceding D= 0 , T= 0, but her email conspired against her as well. Large number of posts with mail merge seemed to equal a server hitch on her side. Perhaps the numbers hit the “gee, it must be spam trigger.”

End result was that almost no one had either pattern or target as the minutes of Friday ticked away. Only the fact that she placed the pattern up on the website saved the whole battle from crashing and burning.

My sense of humour is still intact. After all, I signed up late not knowing if I was still going to be playing in Sock Madness and with a pattern I can at least get started.

Would have been nice to have had everything, I could have probably posted off socks by noon tomorrow.

The View

Green Leaves on my favorite Tree


I just could not resist. Land Rover provided me with such a great opportunity at the Tattoo the other night. It isn’t just the US that is into SUVs.

LandRover DisplayOnly way out


Categories: Arches&Doors, home, socks Tags: ,


May 3rd, 2008 2 comments

Admittedly, I did feel a little bit sulky when I noticed that the temperature in Heidelberg was 24 degrees while it is a whopping 15 here. Still, I had sunshine for a good portion of the day. Enough so that I could enjoy all the small blooms in the back yard (ok, garden. I will learn the proper British terminology one of these days. Right about when I finish and head back to Germany.)

When I figured out that it was much warmer outside than inside (heat? what heat? It is May, no one runs heat in May. Even if they had working heat which I don’t.) I opened up doors and windows. With a nice cross breeze I might have suceeded in raising the temp a degree or two. Seems like brick walls hold the cold stubbornly not giving up without hours of coaxing.

I have flowers



Pink buttons
Purple Bells

None of which show what the lawn is starting to resemble
more flowers and grass

At least, that is my excuse for not cutting the grass. All those little flower heads would be decapitated. Given a choice, I would much rather have long grass than lose all the flowers. And I would rather look at flowers than do laundry. With a clothes line and sunshine, I didn’t see that opting out would be all that smart.


Took the wheels outside

The Paulitz
The Paulitz
Dutch Wheel
The Dutch wheel.
Finishing up the first two bobbins of singles
The Singles
It gives some great colour combinations when plyed. Lazy here – just going from one wheel directly to the Dutch Wheel. A bargin off Ebay a few years ago, the bobbins will hold a good 300 gm of finely spun yarn. With the low ratios, it take forever but is makes it easy to avoid over spinning.
2 ply


Anyone else remember the old Sockknitters Listserve? When one new sock knitter mentioned how weird her socks looked, I told her to go and look at the Museum of Odd Socks.

The Barcelona pair doesn’t qualify for membership. I rather like them.

Barcelona FrontBarcelona Back


The BBC production of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple: The Moving Finger and At Bertram’s Hotel.

Great productions to knit by.



May 2nd, 2008 Comments off

You don’t talk at breakfast it seems in the British Officer’s Mess. Squeaking into the dining room five minutes before the end of morning serving time, I was greated by a wall of silence. Carefully spaced out around the table with at least one space between each person, everyone had their eyes down reading the paper and eating.

Custom it seems is all important. Unlike other Messes, you don’t need to wear your hat here to be left completely alone.

Having a warm breakfast was nice. The most energetic I will ever get at home is oatmeal. I still clearly don’t understand toast racks; just appear to be a device destined to make your toast get cold immediately.


The mail run this afternoon turned out to be a good deal. The four boxes that I had mailed to myself all showed up.

So once again, I can get back to the Hodge Podge,

Hodge Podge

adding a few more rows to the upper section.


And it was on to finishing the foot shaping on the Barcelona socks.

Going down the foot on Barcelona

SKP2008 pattern also came out. I had forgotten completely. Since it was a 1900 or so last night US release, I could have pulled it this morning. Dropping out of competition on Sock Madness made me sensibly look at the projects I want to do and where I am going to spend my time over the next few months. I will knit all the pairs for SKP2008 (as long as they are not too stupid) but I am reserving the right to bail, just like I am skipping the optional pattern for Madness.



There is also this project which had been at a standstill for a while.

Spring Colours Merino

Books & all

The RAF Croughton Library is being returned to its old, renovated quarters. Since it will be closing for a couple of weeks, the librarian increased the length of time one could check out A/V materials. ANd the number, that is also important. Not only is this great for some of us at a distance, but it makes good logistical sense; the more items are out on loan, the fewer to get moved and shelved in the wrong place.
In my bag heading out the door were several Miss Marples, two Inspector Morse and a Hamish McBeth. Never let it be said that I have anything against British Programming.


Last Friday morning I was in Munich. Not having enough sense to come in out of the rain, I went prowling around the Rathaus. Some of entry ways are arches set with metal gates, going in or coming out.

Munich RathausMunich Rathaus


May 1st, 2008 Comments off

As should be pretty obvious, I am playing around with the blog again. I still like the simplicity of my original theme the best, but since there is still an unresolved copyright question I am not going there.

I played with MistyLook for a while. It has some nice clean lines which it seemed that everyone in the world loved. The theme itself didn’t like the random header plug-in and I really can’t make up my mind which picture of the back garden I like the best. It changes. Now, obviously, so does the header without any work from me. I suppose that I could do knitting pictures, but that might be work. The main background of snowy branches became a bit too much, so it is now grass in sunshine. I keep thinking that something other than blue is good.

This theme started out as Mandigo. There are still fixes needed. I don’t like the basic css for the pictures as I have to remember to add certain things on every line at the moment. There is also the issue of the galleries not working properly, but I think that is a side effect of two sidebars. I will try taking them out of the childpages and see if things improve.


All of this takes time away from what is important – knitting. In this case the Barcelona Socks

The Barcelona Socks


And spinning some more of this wonderful merino roving. Finished up the first bobbin last night and started on the second

Spinning progress

Audio Books

While starting a new book – Hard Truth by Nevada Barr.


Categories: Books & Tapes, computers, socks, Spinning Tags:

Sock Madness – Round 5

April 27th, 2008 1 comment

In which I get extremely frustrated and hang it all.

Imagine the following:

    1.I have to head back to the UK today.
    2.Round 5 on Sock Madness is about to start – with the pattern to be released between 7-10 am in the US. That comes out to be 1300-1600 my time.
    3. I have to catch the Strass at 1329 to make sure that I make my train connection in Mannheim. I could leave later but if the Bahn is wonky then I have flight issues.

Did I mention that I had doodled away most of the morning running errands with the Voice (currently hoarse)? Sprinting through the house and packing like made, I checked my email before turning off the computer.

S-Bahns run on time, trains don’t. Leaving early turned out to be a great idea as I made my connection in Mannheim. From there I call home, get the teen to log into my email box just in case and wait.

As I am pulling into the Fernbahnhof at Fraport, my handi rings. It is CelticMemoryYarns calling from Ireland to make sure that I had the pattern since it had been out for almost a couple of hours.

Nope, I am on the train. She texts me the pattern. (Is this woman great or what?)

Meanwhile, I drop off my bag at Lufthansa (life is easy) and get through the first security check point.

Sitting on the floor of Terminal B with my yarn

The Yarn

I knit the first toe and look at the pattern.

the toe

It doesn’t compute. The stitch numbers don’t balance. I txt Jo, she checks and gets back to me later with the corrections. Meanwhile, I am prepared with extra needles and knit the second toe.

Starting the pattern, it seems strange, there are issues with second row as well, but I am now on the plane.

It is still Pesach and the sandwhiches are turkey. Now cheese would have been fine – I would wipe the bread off the cheese. But turkey? I eat more nuts from my trailmix bag.

the sock back

I fight the socks, and they fight me through Immigration, bagagge claim, customs, the bus, the train, the wait and the second train.

Knitting while walking from the Camberley Train Station to the Royal Military Academy just is not in the cards. It has gotten cold and I left my fleece jacket in Heidelberg.

Rolling into the house – it is now 2030 I go on line first thing. I look at the pattern. I am not knitting the pattern, I am knitting something else.

But this is not the pattern

I have two sock feet done, ready to fight with the heels. But that second row of the pattern – it is P1, K31, P1 – just like Jo txt, but I wrote it down P1 K3 P1. I had quit taking pictures while on the plane, it just didn’t make sense and I wasn’t having a lot of fun documenting that everything looked strange.

So I am not going to show you two feet done incorrectly.

I just am going to hang the whole thing. Getting sleep tonight and going to work in the morning fresh is much more important.

What I have learned from this pattern and the last is that test knitters are critical. They have to knit the pattern as it is written, from charts and from words. Mistakes do happen, we are all human. When you are writing a pattern for a contest, it is not the same as writing for open knitting where people are free to change whatever doesn’t suit them. It has to be precise and explicit. Every word has to be checked and accurate. Repeats have to be defined as to how many.


Making me much happier is this bobbin of fine wool singles.


Yes, singles. The roving was a tri-colour white, light blue, and black. A delight to spin, I varied the amount of each as I went to arrive at a progression of change. I have a nice contrasting light grey alpaca which will be the second ply.


Since I wasn’t knitting – I went back to The Outlaw Demon Wails by Kim Harrison. It is the 6th Rachel Morgan book. I am enjoying it, the sub-plots are interesting. Don’t be put off by the blurb, which is not an accurate reflection of the story. Good review here.


Categories: Books & Tapes, socks, Travel Tags: