Saturday, March 22, 2014

We advance.

I finished the 18th repeat of the centre of the Unst Bridal Shawl last night – only half a repeat to go, followed by eight rows of garter stitch, and then the fireworks begin.

I've read ahead. It all sounds perfectly feasible. First, pick up stitches all around. Much agonised counting, but I have started every row by slipping the stitch w.y.i.f., and there is a row of little loops down each side as a result which look very pick-up-able. Mark each corner stitch with yarn, using a different colour for the fourth corner. Purl one round. Start the chart, which has a yo on each side of the corner stitches every other round.

Bob's your uncle.

It occurs to me that I might as well purl that first round, after picking up the stitches, just to see what I make of the experience. Sharon says that making lace from behind is no problem. P2tog, slip1 purl 1 psso, whatever. It'll look fine, she says.

I had another reasonable day with the accounts, too, recording the day's events – there was some financial stuff in the morning mail – and nibbling away at the backlog.

My third on-line order was delivered from Waitrose. They have a particularly good line in pleasant young men on their delivery vans. I don't entirely understand what's in it for the supermarkets here – they are all terribly keen to deliver our groceries. I would have thought they'd shrink from the labour expense involved. From Waitrose, at least, delivery is free if you spend £50 or more. That's easy. And, although I'm getting the hang of things, I am spending less than I used to on my weekly jaunts. That must be true of most order-ers.

(Which is not to say I'm necessarily spending less on food – what I don't have on hand must be purchased on Broughton Street where prices are higher.)

And I got up to St James Dreadful Centre, to collect some prescriptions. Sometimes on better days I think my ailment is all in the mind, and everything would be fine if I just got out a bit more and strode about. But it isn't so. By the time I reached Boots I was staggering. I had to wait for one of the prescriptions, so I sank down in a comfortable chair in John Lewis' yarn department and looked at Rowan Magazine 52.

Like my Vogue Knitting Book collection from 1932 to the late 60's, Rowan Magazines are numbered but not dated. I don't know how long ago 52 was. It's a particularly good one, lots of Fair Isle-y colour stuff, some fisherman-gansey clones, and a good section of plain-and-smooth to finish off. An article about traditional knitting (nothing we didn't know). An exhibition of Kaffe's at the American Museum in Bath.

The only tbing that stopped me buying it was the reflection that Rowan Magazines are pretty heavy, and I still had the walk home to do. I rather regret the decision now.

One more thing – Kate Davies is offering a tea towel. I think it's terrific, and have ordered one.


  1. I'm looking forward to my first Waitrose delivery all the more now - I'm catching up with my favourite blogs while I wait.
    And st James has me staggering just being there... Only for the strong in my view.

  2. Online ordering of groceries is a life saver I think when it is hard work to walk and carry. I have had nothing but good experiences from Waitrose, Ocado and Sainsburys. If anything is not quite right they always sort it out with a phone call. In all fairness to the other supermarkets I have yet to use the others but I think it is a brilliant service for all but especially older people.

  3. About prescriptions. I'm not sure about Scotland but here in England all of the chemists operate a drop off service for prescriptions. Usually the script gets sent to the pharmacy from the surgery then the pharmacy delivers it too you. Notices in pharmacies I have seen seem to imply it is for those over 70.... Ask or phone and ask the pharmacy and you might be surprised

  4. Anonymous12:02 PM

    Have ordered the teatowel-it's just my cup of tea and I shallframe it for my study. A friend delivers prescriptions for Boots and he is busy all the day. It would be worthwhile doing that and then you could just go out and have a walk for pleasure. Must go now as I am having my hair cut-I would rather the dentist than the hairdresser! Catriona

  5. I think the grocery delivery service you get in the UK is wonderful. As far as I know nothing like that exists in Canadian cities. We have delivery box services, where a selection of fresh vegetables and fruits get delivered weekly, but it's nothing like what you describe. I bought one of Kate's tea towels too. Impossible to resist, especially since I've knit several of the sweaters featured on it.

    1. Anonymous8:17 PM

      Thrifty Foods in BC does excellent home delivery of groceries.

  6. Anonymous2:41 PM

    You made me curious about Rowan #52, so I searched on Amazon. They have it, and list it as Fall-Winter 2012-2013.

  7. I imagine John Lewis to be the grocery chain from the series To the Manor Born, with Penelope Keith. I loved that series.
    I congratulate you on your almost completed center of the shawl. Now you'll have the center and edging done! Yea. I admire your slavish devotion to a single project.

  8. Love the new photo header!

    Love delivery grocery service! since this winter was the Winter From H##L i resorted to FRESH DIRECT a local company that is only a delivery service - no standalone store. The man who started it was working for a very popular chain, FAIRWAY, in Manhattan that has branched out now to surrounding areas. Anyway, he was supposedly in charge of researching a home online delivery service but decided to leave and start his own company . i think there was some lawsuit or other when he left but whatever, its a wonderful company.

    i used it when i worked and lived in NYC but when i moved north of the city they didnt extend to my new area. however they have since but i also acquired a vehicle and had a flexible work schedule so couldnt justify it.

    however this DREADFUL winter (there is STILL SNOW in my garden!) drove me to using them again. and SO WONDERFUL to sit at my leisure choosing what i need . i find that i too spend less (but there are still tempting items that somehow find their way into my cart). it does help to see that total adding up. and decided if i really need that extra treat.

    and i am now working a mon-fri schedule and REALLLLLLY hate spending any amount of free time at the grocery store on the weekend. no free delivery but a "pass" you buy that works out to be cheaper weekly and you get to RESERVE your SPOT! that alone is worth it...

    i ordered the tea towel too... after thinking about it over night... dont know why i bothered waiting... anyway its on its way now.