Monday, November 22, 2010

Hospital visit today. I am again apprehensive. It sounds as if there has been a little progress, but not much. Our niece persuaded her mother to eat a rock bun on Saturday. I’m not sure I could manage that myself. We’ll take along a couple of madeleines from the local epicerie.

Our niece has arranged – she hopes – to be with her mother when news is finally reported later this week of the (in)famous “tests”. She is afraid that if the news is bad, C. will simply give up.

We had planned to go to Strathardle tomorrow to batten down a few hatches before the Christmas invasion. The weather forecast is very bad – we may delay a few days. We are booked for London the week beginning December 6 – we have to get to Strathardle and back, and recover, before then.

That leaves knitting. I made some progress with the hat.

The new Knitter’s has arrived. My resolve to let that subscription lapse is somewhat strengthened by it. What is it that irritates me so about AX's photography?


Jean, I am inclined to agree that yarn thicker than DK wasn’t generally available in the 50’s and early 60’s. Then things changed. There was certainly a “knitwear revolution” in the 60’s – the Aran craze; Bernat Klein's big expensive beautiful yarns with different colours plyed together. I can vaguely date things by remembering where I was when I knit what.

I am interested that you remember wearing cardigans backwards. I thought that was just an American affectation. I remember vividly that when I tried it in Glasgow in the late 50’s, as an undergraduate, I was laughed out of town by the astonished natives.

A huge disappointment yesterday -- there was an interview with Bruce Springsteen in the Sunday Times from which I learned that he went to Freehold High School. For decades I have believed that he, like me and my sister, was a product of Asbury Park HS. Freehold is very near by, we're still in Monmouth County, Springsteen is undoubtedly an Asbury Park boy (he still lives in the vicinity). But he didn't go to APHS, and I am crushed.


  1. Anonymous9:09 AM

    I will be praying for you and yours.


  2. I do hope the news is good later this week.

  3. We are all thinking of you - this is a week full of anxiety for you.

    Back to the backwards cardi - I think we were a little avant gard down in the west of Cornwall - due to the presence of so many artists and "arty type" hangers on. I know when I went to live in Reading, in 1966, I was regarded as a fashion example. Other girls used to copy me, since they seemed to think I knew what to wear, even though we were so close to London, where it was all suppose to be "happening".

  4. Keeping your SIL in my thoughts.

    As to wearing sweaters backwards, I remember doing that in the early to mid 1980s. Not sure what brought that into fashion - perhaps it was part of the torn sweatshirt/leggings look from the movie Flashdance.

  5. Last night I was listening to one of my CD's of Joan Baez. I had always thought there was some connection between her and Belmont Mass. where I went to high school. Now reading her bio I find that the family moved from California to Boston when she was 18 and entering her freshman year at Boston University. Did the family live in Belmont then?
    Our paths really did cross in 1964 when she was involved with the Free Speech Movement on the UC Berkeley campus.
    I wonder if Bruce Springsteen or Joan are knitters? Joan, more likely.

  6. In the mid-60s I knit a jumper described as "The Six-hour Sweater", pattern, I think from "The Daily Mirror". This involved using six balls of yarn at once to create a super-bulky yarn. It needed a solid t-shirt under it as a base layer, but I wore it to death. I laughed when I saw this same technique in use at recent yarn fairs.

  7. =Tamar8:13 PM

    Simple repetitious motion (e.g., knitting) can be a comfort in difficult times. I hope yours helps.

    I seem to recall the backwards cardi being for good luck, or to announce you were engaged, or both (reverse clothing fooling the back luck into going away from you?).

    It's hard to compare yarns between nations because not only are the label words different, the yarns are different. In the 1970s when I began to notice yarn, Red Heart was just shifting from wool to Orlon acrylic, and it was almost Aran weight, noticeably thicker than the cheaper brands that were also labeled "worsted weight." The cheap ones may have been DK equivalent, but that term wasn't used here. We had "sport weight" which is thinner than DK, and baby weight, which was a size now sold as "lace weight."

    Best wishes to all.

  8. Perhaps your niece can try to obtain some sense from the doctors of how long recovery often is in such cases?
    I could easily imagine a month or more of complete rest required after such serious surgery.
    If there is a social worker on your sister-in-law's file, he or she may be able to offer some feedback as well.
    Best wishes from across the ocean,
    Lisa in Toronto
    p.s. how is your Beijing family doing in the recent spate of air pollution? I am heading over there soon myself (which means no access to Blogger!) and I am a wee bit concerned.

  9. keeping you and your family in my prayers ... glad you have your knitting to keep calm and carry on...