Sunday, May 20, 2018

No knitting yet today. My Italian tutor is coming first thing tomorrow, and such sitting time as was available has been spent struggling with conditional clauses.

Beverly, that’s an interesting idea, to replace one of the peerie rounds of Alexander’s Fair Isle vest with “MH” to commemorate yesterday. I think that might be too much commemoration for one sweater – on top of the Calcutta Cup, I mean, but I don’t have to decide right now.

On Nine Eleven, I was working on Kaffe’s Mini Roman Blocks, for James, a magnum opus which occupied many months. That one, too, turned out somewhat too big, and also I now think was too bright for his taste. Be that as it may, I was working on a sleeve at the time, and inserted two rows of black, completely interrupting the pattern. I think that’s the only time I have incorporated a Current Event in my knitting (unless you count the Calcutta Cup).

Thank you for your advice about chlorinated water. I didn’t know that letting it stand would get rid of some of the chlorination. I am horrified, Tamar, to think that bottled water may be just (chlorinated) tap water. Mine says “bottled at source from the lower spring at Panannich Wells, Ballater” (which is somewhere near Balmoral). Perhaps I am naïve to believe it.

Meanwhile the new kimchi is as quiet as its predecessor, if not more so. There are quite a few little bubbles pressed up against the glass, but they are motionless and might just be air bubbles if I failed to press everything down properly. Other people’s fermentations bubble away, and overflow, and even explode. I clearly haven’t got the knack yet.

I learned today, from a neighbour-friend, that he introduced me to Claudia McWilliam last year, who admired the sorrel I was then growing. I was completely unaware of who she was, if so. Perhaps I only became aware of her later in the year, first by reading her son Minoo Dinshaw’s brilliant biography of Stephen Runciman as a sort of roundabout preparation for going to Palermo, and then moving on to McWilliam herself.

He also told me today of the sudden death of another neighbour-friend, sad news, especially as the surviving wife is ill and frail and needed him. Old age is a bit like dodge ball.


  1. If your bottled water says bottles at source, it is likely just that - I think the real offerders are the big multi-nationals who try to claim special properties for their water when it is just tap water.
    As well as bottled, we use a filter jug which means it stands for long enough to get rid of much of the chlorine, and the newest filter cartridges claim to remove it. It certainly needs doing - sometimes running the cold tap lets out a smell like a municipal swimming baths!

  2. Apologies - I never seem to see the typos till it is published.

  3. Is the kimchi warm enough? It occurs to me that bacteria does its best work in warmer environments, maybe it gets a little cool overnight?

  4. I doubt that people’s kimchi is as active as you say after only a day or two. Give it time. Temperature has a big effect on the speed too. The amount of salt makes a difference as well. I think it is fabulous that you enjoyed your first batch. That in itself is a big success. I hope this next one is delicious too!

  5. Do you have well water at Strathardle? It would not be chlorinated. Or buy distilled. I made some sauerkraut. It was recommended to leave it undisturbed for a month (I didn’t like it). Then I fermented pineapple sticks with jalapeños in the bottom of the jar. Those are tasty, but somehow I never eat them.

  6. =Tamar6:27 PM

    I apologize for having reported very old news; the original bottled tap water episode was in 2004. It's on Wikipedia under "Dasani" and they say it's no longer distributed in the UK. (CocaCola later bought Abbey Well water, under the Schweppes brand.) I'm sure that there's a Health&Safety rule that water labelled as spring water must actually be spring water. Dasani wasn't falsely labeled - they said it was "purified water" which was true. They just didn't give the source.