Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Here is a picture of the wounded courgette, mentioned yesterday. It's the one of the left, obviously. I go out and inspect it every couple of hours, and my guess is that it is going to recover – only to be uprooted, because the other one will still be well in advance of it. I didn't get the beetroot in yesterday, and must not fail today.

Hat, I love that little rhyme about the cuckoo. Is that true, the third line: “In the middle of June, another tune”? Perhaps he was there after all, and I didn't recognise the note in the general cacophony. According to the project I mentioned yesterday, he will eventually fly south through France and Spain and over to North Africa. The project website has a good interactive map on which you can click on the icons of individual cuckoos and learn where they are right this moment. I have sponsored a Scottish cuckoo called “BB” who is currently near Loch Katrine where he was tagged.

One of the English cuckoos is already in France – an early departure, the website says, but not the earliest they have recorded.

Knitting went well yesterday. “Well”, these days, means at least one complete round of the borders of the Unst Bridal Shawl, and I achieved that. I am about halfway around round 124 at the moment, one of the plain-vanilla garter stitch rounds (as all subsequent even-numbered rounds will be) – and all the more frustrating, in that it still takes a long time. All those innocent-seeming YO's at the corners on alternate rounds have seriously added up.

I am increasingly worried about the Messy Corner. There is nothing for it now but to finish and block and then contemplate the damage. Leave it? In use, with the shawl somewhat folded, it won't be at all conspicuous. Or try to fix? The problem is both that the central stitch, so neat and straight on the other three corners, wavers hither and yon; and that the YO's on either side of it are too big. Maybe I could crochet up a faux central stitch which would tighten the YO's in the process. Or something with a needle and herringbone stitch?

Tamar, thank you for your comment yesterday about the needle I am using – now safely recorded in Evernote.

Nana GoGo, I have used cubics before, although I can't remember when. There they were in my dp-holder when I was searching out a set to take to Strathardle. It was the memory of them that inspired me to order more, the right size and length, when I found myself unhappy with the set I was using – gunmetal grey and, as I said yesterday, too long. We shall see.

The other knitting news is that I now have the Martin Storey book about knitting for men, and it's good. And I also have Ann Budd's “Scarf Style 2” which Amazon insidiously suggested while I was buying Storey. There are some really good things in there, enough to make one look forward to Christmas if such a thing were possible. I am hugely smitten with Kathryn Alexander's 3-D Entrelac Scarf. Would any granddaughter actually wear it? One can order a kit – one skein each in 25 colours. The website is being reconstructed at the moment, saving us all from a possibly dangerous link.

Here is an extraneous photograph, taken as we were driving home on Monday. We had left the house in good time, but were still  mildly concerned about catching Rachel's train. She had one of those tickets that meant that all was lost if she didn't turn up at 2pm. We were stopped mid-glen by some cattle being moved. I lept out – since Rachel was driving – and took this. Not very good, but very Strathardle.


  1. Ellen1:20 PM

    It is quite likely that the corner will take care of itself once the whole piece is soaked and blocked. Life is like that, so is knitting.
    When the first scarf styles book came out, there was also a Kathryn Alexander scarf in it. At the LYS where I worked, we kitted it up with needlepoint wool, using the small skeins of 20m. They required a needle one size up from the pattern, and the whole was slightly larger. I saw some lovely variations made just from stash, using whatever colors and textures were at hand; that worked as well. After all your Carol Sunday adventures, you might have enough right there. Its quite fun to do, and you can usually toss off a whole color's worth in a sitting...if you did one color a week, you would be done by Christmas.

  2. Gosh, Jean, you must be feeling stronger to be able to contemplate that entrelac scarf.
    On a different topic, you mentioned Waitrose's ten bean mix - but what did you do with them? Did you make a sauce or eat them as a salad. I've bought some - very good value - but now I'm at a loss.

  3. The Entrelac Scarf must cost a small fortune if you need 25 colours! I think the young 'uns like big,chunky scarf/cowls but since you're her Grandmother it's something she may wear and treasure forever.
    Shandy - those bean mixes are great mixed with salad greens and tomatoes and folded into wraps for a nice veggie snack.