Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Here we still are.

I am irritatingly not-quite-well, a sub-flu, I think, such as is suffered by old people who have had their flu injection. A bit ache-y, a bit of sore throat and sore glands, a degree or so of fever. In Strathardle, it’s not just that I need to get more seeds in, and weed of course, and net the gooseberries to keep the caterpillars off – I’ve got to put a heavy apparatus on my back and zap – sorry, with glysophate – the grass and weeds at the edges of our driveway.

My husband did it until he was at least 81, and I only fill the apparatus half-full: I ought to be able to manage for another year or so. But not until I feel perky-er, and meanwhile the weather isn’t too good for the job, blowy and showery where what is needed is calm and dry.

So here we are.

As soon as I had sent yesterday’s blog into the ether, I realised that what had to be done for the Mourning Shawl was that I had to tink the whole row back and turn the work and do it properly. It wasn’t as bad as I feared, and the result isn’t as messy as it might have been. I may attempt a doorstep picture today if the sun shines.

Stitches attempted to escape, showing as much ingenuity as escapees from Colditz. They lie doggo along the diagonals formed by k2togs, and then make a break for freedom when your back is turned. But I think the whole thing is now secure, and certainly the final row of the first chart, row 54, is utterly in order, so that I can pick it up in due course and sweep forward.

But for now, for today, it’s on to Aran. The panel I am going to start swatching is in fact more Starmore-Celtic than traditional Aran. So exciting!

And that’s not all. While I was out shopping yesterday (we’ve got to eat), my husband took a phone call. When he reported it to me, he didn’t need to get past the word “Loop”.

The Madeleinetosh yarn has arrived!

The website, however, is not ready for me yet. The top of the relevant page has been altered to announce the new delivery, but the shades listed below are still out-of-stock, out-of-stock, out-of-stock. I wish I had been here to receive that phone call, but I ought to be able to contain my impatience for a few more days.

Inheritance tax

I am interested to discover that Canada and Australia don’t have it. It is a most unpopular tax here, especially as the increase in property values in the last ten years has caught more and more estates.

Elaine in Canada (a.k.a. “Anonymous”), yes, of course you can remove a couple of pictures from the walls before the valuers come. Our solicitor more or less advised that course when we were doing our wills. Alexander is very law-abiding and probably won’t countenance it, and I won’t be there.

But I really want to know the answer to your question – how is the valuing done? Rachel’s husband Ed dealt with his parents’ estate, and says it is up to you to get a valuation and submit it, rather like a tax return. We had a friend, ages ago now, who discovered that a picture she had inherited from an uncle was worth, not hundreds as she hoped, but many tens of thousands. (Hans Baldung, Adam and Eve: I think it wound up in a Canadian gallery.) Although by then the uncle’s estate had been completely settled, the Inland Revenue moved back in and claimed their pound of flesh.

I’ll keep asking our niece, persistently but I hope not too pressingly.


  1. Now marked "in stock"! Run!!!

  2. Anonymous11:48 PM

    Thank you very much for taking the time to answer.

    -Elaine in Canada

  3. I am usually so happy to see a new post from you, but this time I thought, "Oh no, they weren't able to go to Strathardle as planned." I hope you are feeling better soon!

  4. Another new word I have learned from Jean: doggo. I'm surprised it's not used more often, seems very useful.