Thursday, September 18, 2008

We’re going to Strathardle today for a two-nighter – should blow some cobwebs away. I think we’re all feeling these days that if All Else Fails, we could go there and live off the land. My vegetable-growing wouldn’t be equal to the task, I’m afraid, but it’s a pleasant dream.

What happened yesterday was that the men in suits were just as quick as Mrs Miles of Drummond Place to grasp that we were about to have a run on the Bank of Scotland. The solution is on the whole a happy one, and the sentence I particularly liked in the news story I’ve just read is: “The future of HBOS chief Andy Hornby is unclear”. He is the clever young man who drove Halifax Bank of Scotland into the ditch. The Halifax Building Society was 150 years old, and is much lamented in the northern city where it was born. The Bank of Scotland was founded in 1695.

We are shareholders – bank shares were highly recommended for widows and orphans up until a few months ago – and will at least escape with a little. We moved savings out of HBOS yesterday: so did Alexander and Ketki.

Meanwhile, what? It’s not over yet.

But news from the knitting front is a bit more cheerful, too. I reined myself in and faced the fact that the barrister’s wig was not to be knit in half an hour. I did a swatch, to practice those rolls (“Tuck Stitch Panels”), and then started again on dp’s. I think it’s going to work.

I’ll have to take it along, although normally Edinburgh and Perthshire knitting projects are strictly separated.

I bought some Noro sock yarn on Tuesday. I’ve heard doubtful reports of it, but I have to try once.

The new neighbours were quiet last night, but trouble looms on that front as surely as it does on the financial markets.


  1. I had been blithely assuming that bank deposits in the UK would be protected to the same extent - or better - than in the US. Your comments today made me check that out, and I now realise that the terms are much less comforting in the UK. Thanks!

    Ironically, we transferred money to the UK two weeks ago as we felt the financial situation might be less volatile than in the US. I guess I would need to have a better economic mind than I possess to figure all this mess out.

  2. So you withdrew your money, but where would one put it then to be safe? Under the bed in a stocking?
    As the commentator in "The Times" said, Who would think it was a good idea to give mortgages to those too poor ever to repay them? And how can this phenomenon have been on such a massive scale globally? I'm with you on the fantasy of self-sufficiency. "Cold Mountain" is a text close to our hearts: Ruby planting her winter garden to rally Ada's starving spirits.

  3. re: The New Neighbors -- I personally think you need to take up tap dancing and spend the hour from 5 to 6 AM in rigorous practising. ;)

  4. Financially and politically, these are very interesting times. Australia's new govt is being hounded to do something, as if they can avert the downward spiral that has been sliding since before they won office. My parents are more than a little gloomy as they're self-funded retirees, and feel that they may have to start work again at 75 if things continue so badly. I'm assuming that the situation will bottom out eventually but I feel that it's not yet and it won't be before a lot of innocent bystanders are flattened. Gloom. I hope that TCOTU will provide a respite from all this.

    Re the wig. If the tuck stitch adaptation of the adult-sized wig doesn't work, I may have a solution based on my 2-toned, workaday tea cosy, which would produce vertical rather than horizontal rolls. I knit it in 'fair isle' and the carried inactive yarn very tightly behind the knitting, giving the vertically-striped sections a concertinaed effect. I knit this flat but it may work for dpns. I can forward the method if you need.