Saturday, November 13, 2010

I needn’t have worried. C. was very much her old self yesterday, although very weak and pretty uncomfortable. Not in great pain – they’ve taken away her morphine drip. It seemed astonishing, at nearly 80, three days after major surgery. She was still not being given anything to eat, but appetite is returning -- without the feeling of nausea which has been the leading cancer symptom since August.

She likes keeping the cards close to her chest – “there’s lots you don’t know” is one of her favourite lines to me. She soon won’t want her daughter to keep us as well informed as we have been these last few days. I hope we can at least get the report on the daughter’s conversation with the surgeon, when she finally tracks him to his lair.

(Fuzzarelly, I did notice that New Yorker article about cancer. I’ll read it thoroughly when we’re next in Strathardle. That’s where we read the New Yorker, and I often enjoy articles I wouldn’t have bothered with here in real life.)

Meanwhile the daughter’s daughter, “little C.”, her grandmother’s namesake, arrived yesterday for a surprise visit. She is in her final year at Bristol University and has been so distraught all week that her tutor suggested she go home for the weekend. It will be reassuring for Little C. to find her grandmother so well, and a very pleasant surprise for C. herself, but most importantly, a great treat for our niece who has bourn a fearful weight this week more or less alone.


Thank you, firstly, Dawn and Susan and Joan, for saying that I have got to re-do the braids on that ear-flap hat. That’s what friends are for. Joan’s idea of using i-cord is interesting. How to finish it, in that case? Small pompoms?

I will do it, but not right now. I am rushing ahead with the scarf to find out what length I get from the first ball. Do I need more yarn? I bought five balls. I’m now at about 11” and the ball is looking bedraggled. I would like 18”, to guarantee a 7-foot scarf. The pattern is 26 rows, and in order to balance the ends, you can’t stop just anywhere. That may involve a bit of waste yarn.

(I know what you mean about scarves not growing, Susan. It’s often more cheering to observe how much yarn you’re using.)

The sharp-eyed among you may have noticed, in yesterday’s picture, that all was not well. There is a six-stitch panel at each edge of the scarf which is not affected by the McGuffin. I had succeeded in twisting each of them through 180 degrees. It wasn’t a question of galloping horses – that’s what we call in computing a Fatal Error, and I have re-done it.

I had a terrible time last night with the second McGuffin. Twice I thought I had done it, and knit on, only to see that it was a total mess. I’m sorry I didn’t take a picture for you. It was pretty easy, this morning, and will probably get easier.

I am delighted with my decision to use Cocoon instead of Big Wool.

The Wurm: I found myself worrying about that hem at the beginning. Apart from the slight awkwardness of a provisional cast-on, it means that fit is crucial. Then I had one of those rare moments of enlightenment: why not side-step the problem entirely and start with a perfectly conventional inch or two of ribbing? I think I’ll try that.


  1. rosesmama12:30 PM

    Adding my thoughts on the hat: the thin cords will not stand up to much use if the hat is intended for a very active child.

    I'm glad to hear that your SIL is in good spirits. Whatever the outcome, this is the most important for her. She continues in my thoughts.

  2. Anonymous1:36 PM

    I was so amazed by the entire concept of making a loop in a cable that I completely missed your Fatal Error! That is a very interesting scarf, Jean. Do the loops make it extra bulky when it is looped around the neck?

    Barbara M.

  3. I have used icord and added tassels at the end. However, just braiding several strands of each color and then wrap the braid securely about an inch above the ends works well and is fast.

  4. Go for the rib at the bottom rather than a hem - I have vowed never to do a hem that I can avoid since, although I have no great trouble doing them, they always end up as a lumpy tube in wear. I am lumpy enough as it is without my knitwear adding to it.

    Sill thinking of you, and the unhappiness that is always at the back of your mind.

  5. The scarf looks very impressive. Visiting Liberty yesterday i could not see much difference in price between Big wool and Cocoon. Perhaps it is the quantities required which make it less of a splurge?
    I hope your niece finds the surgeon forthcoming. Patient confidentiality often restricts a helpful dialogue with medical people, I find.

  6. I made a hat like that years ago for a friend.... I think I just made a big fat icord around the bottom- the hat was knit in Lopi with a fleece lining, and I did braids from the earflaps- (so icord and braids!) The friend went to Law school in Wisconsin and we have since lost touch... I wonder if he ever wears that hat anymore!! It was a fun knit though.. maybe I should make another....(not for myself though. One does not need hats in Texas, and as much and I like not having to dig my car out of the snow, the lack of a need for woolies is a bit sad.)