Saturday, May 06, 2006

The big excitement on the knitting front is that I finished that ball of yarn – and attached the next one, and knit across a whole row with it. My score for ’06 is actually in credit: 57 balls of yarn out, 55 in, due to some truly industrious giving-away. I’ve only consumed five by actually knitting them. But pretty soon now, I will lay my sister’s shawl aside in order to knit the shrug which will be my entry in the Home Industries Tent of the Strathardle Highland Gathering this summer (4th Saturday in August, all welcome). I’ve got six skeins waiting for that, and will presumably knock off five of them.

Otherwise all quiet. This morning’s computer problem is that the system claims I have no new mail. That’s impossible, with the groups I belong to. From time to time in the past, I’ve had days when I couldn’t connect to the Demon mail server, and the system has told me so. But never this.


I hoped as I was writing yesterday’s message, that someone would write to tell me they already knew about piling Pelion on Ossa. You were the only one, Vivienne, but there you were, and you made my day, not least because of your youth.

Printing large files: I forgot to say, yesterday, that your idea about taking a disk to the print shop is an excellent one, Lorna, which I will remember for future use. And your test, Tamar – would I buy the 43-page pamplet if I found it in a shop? – is also excellent. In this case – Liz Lovick on European lace traditions as they relate to Shetland lace – of course I would. And just because an ink cartridge costs $43 (I use a US-based credit card), which is alarming enough, doesn’t mean that the print-out costs $43. I will remember that, too. But my heart will continue to sink when that Adobe screen comes up.


May has suddenly exploded, and it is frustrating to be here in Edinburgh when my vegetables need me, 60 miles to the north. My husband is rooted to the spot, however, and I plan to leave him overnight on Monday and dash up to get most of the seeds in. There will be two distractions:

1) He is a dandelion fanatic, and expects me to pick all that are in flower, so that they don’t seed. We have made some slow progress against the Dandelion Menace, through the years, but there will still be a lot. And I’m not allowed to throw them in the burn, for fear they will just seed downstream. I will have to keep them in a plastic bag, and he will be able to see how many I got.

2) I have a Strathardle Book, just as I have Strathardle Knitting. Just before we left last time, I started reading The Constant Gardener. I’m glad I haven’t seen the movie yet. When a book is as good as this one, the film is bound to be thinner, while at the same time providing unwelcome information about what is going to happen next. It was hard to leave it behind, and there will be a temptation to lie in the sun and read it while the seeds plant themselves. Not really.


  1. All last spring I was stalking around the back 'lawn' spudding out dandelions while talking to my sister on the phone. Tedious task but unregrettable time loss when distracted.

    I laughed like a drain over Pelion and Mt Ossa. Although I hadn't heard it before I also know the feeling of disappointment when phrases go out of common knowledge. I'm the only one of my generation in my family that remembers "sticks out like three cheers at a funeral", similar in meaning to a "dropped brick". I'm doing my best to revive it!

  2. Anonymous4:22 PM

    I've seen The Constant Gardener, and wondered why it didn't win every prize for film excellence. There's a book? I'll visit the library today and look for it!