Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Poor NY. It is terrible to think of it in that condition.

On the other hand, it sounds as if both federal and state authorities did a rather brilliant job of preparation. It makes Bush’s total dereliction of duty in the case of New Orleans all the more outrageous. I hope the clean-up and reconstruction will go forward with the same energy and attention to detail. It won’t be easy.

My sister and her husband had a Mandatory Evacuation order which some of their neighbours ignored. They spent the night with friends and are now back home, no significant damage, I gather, but also no electricity. They live on low, flat land not all that far from the CT River and Long Island Sound. I wonder how Old Saybrook itself fared which is virtually a peninsula.

Theo says he and Jenni are fine in DC, with all the electricity they need.

I wish the storm had had a proper name -- Alexander or Alexandra or Alessandro or whatever -- instead of a nickname.


I was heartened by your negative comment on the Wingspan, Lou. It’s not working for me. I’m nearly finished with the 6th triangle – near enough the end that I can grit my teeth and see it out.

I went to John Lewis yesterday and had a quick look at Cocoon. I’m afraid the terra cotta colour didn’t lift my heart, and it needs lifting. I was sorry, because I have knit two big Cocoon scarves in the dark days of other years, and I love the Cocoon experience.

Today I’ll go to the new, local LYS (Kathy’s Knits) and see what she has in the way of a big, lofty, red yarn. I had a quick look at Ravelry for patterns, without success. Men trying not to look embarrassed in something girly, or men in firm fabric scarves – herringbone stitch, or whatever – very nice but I’m not up to it. My previous two Cocoons were 1) a Rowan pattern from a couple of years back called Traveller or Wanderer and 2) something from Lynn Barr’s “Reversible Knitting” book. I could repeat either of those, or just go for brioche stitch as previously discussed.


I cruised through the computer section of John Lewis on my way to yarn. Sure enough, no MS Surface among the tablets. I was struck with how small computers are getting – desktops were represented only by a few sturdy specimens along the wall. Maybe that is the answer for me – just leave Old Faithful here on my desk. (It has its uses, such as the disk drive and software to get my husband’s work from his DOS-based Old Faithful into the Cloud.) And get myself a super-duper laptop with which I can waltz around the house.

Catriona, thanks for the tips on Cook. I spent some time on their website yesterday (very confidence-inspiring) and have put both your suggestions on my short list. Prices are really very reasonable. They offer roast lamb with vegetables and roast potatoes to serve six for £35. I'll go for that for the Birthday Lunch. That seems to be real roast lamb, in a lump, not pre-sliced.


  1. Thinking about your red yarn requirement Jean, I'd suggest Rowan's Creative Focus Worsted in Carmine (02055) as it's the happiest of reds.

  2. rosesmama11:35 AM

    During the hurricane, I stumbled on a ravelry photo of a room full of a completely red stash. I tried just now to find it, but it has gone in to the ravelry vortex. I hope it heartens you that such exists.

  3. I love cascade Eco wool in red. It's a clear true red and it is wonderful yarn. I am at the iPad right now, but will be happy to send you my reversible cable scarf pattern when I am near the computer. I think that I just made a case for the laptop rather than another tablet.

  4. I'm not sure if you are set on what you plan to knit once you find the appropriate red yarn, but I have a suggestion. Have you seen the Gaptastic pattern on Ravelry? It calls for a thick yarn and knits up quickly. My daughter-in-law made one last fall and loved it. I have yarn on order to make one for a gift and one for myself, and when I told a friend about it she realized she had the right weight of yarn in her stash and she immediately cast one on her needles.

  5. Anonymous3:20 PM

    Jean, I agree with your thought that it would have been nice to have given the "storm" a proper name. Given the damage done to most of the beach front properties, I guess the name "Sandy" was suitable after all. At least 80 houses in the Rockaways were lost due to fire as well as all of the flooding. It is a mess and so many are without their homes. Most of us in Brooklyn are just fine. Lower Manhattan, not so fine. Peace to all.-Catherine

  6. Checking in from Cape Cod (Falmouth). We just got our power and phone back an hour ago. Lots of sand lost from the beaches and on the road or in driveways. The driveways will need to be plowed. The wind was wild -- but the damage was not anything like NY or NJ.
    My husband and I have been laughing about your comment several days ago about you and your husband having no problems in the marble department. I mentioned the cover article in the latest Economist (which I assume is your son's). He said "that family has plenty of marbles!" Did you know you can read The Economist on the iPad?

  7. It was too late in the season to name the storm Alexander or Alexandra. They start alphabetically at the beginning of the season. Perhaps Sandy was short for Sandra which I would consider to be a proper name, not a nickname for Alexandra.

  8. Anonymous12:59 AM

    On yarn. You might try Cascade's Cloud. I don't know how available it is in Scotland but there are 2 reds that might work for you (tomato & ruby). My sister bought some when I said I'd make a sweater for her and I'm enjoying it.


    is a UK online store that lets you search by color.
    Cheers, Jeanne in Rochester

  9. Agreed on "Sandy". I much prefer the other hurricanes I've lived through (Bertha and Edouard), but names are retired from the lists once they've hit the "big time", and clearly NOAA has gotten a bit lazy. Plus, no one ever thinks they will get past G or N in a given hurricane season, much less make it to S!

    As for red, I have a scarf pattern, Captain Austen's Scarf, which I worked up in Malabrigo Twist's Ravelry Red. The color is so lovely, and the aran weight makes for a reasonably quick knit, without it going by in a flash like a bulky.