Monday, May 27, 2019

I met Kathy of Kathy’s Knits when I was out shopping this morning. Monday is the shop’s day off, but she and her husband had been in tidying up after an invasion (profitable, I trust) from an Amy Detjen tour group. She said that Amy herself had been taken to hospital with pneumonia while the group was in Shetland, but had recovered enough to travel home with everybody else – although not enough to visit Kathy’s Knits.

I met Amy at Camp Stitches on Lake George in ’99 – gosh! twenty years ago – and have loved her ever since. I also have her Craftsy class about that yoke sweater. I’d be glad of news. I had pneumonia once; it was no fun.

On the final day of our Shetland Adventure, we went to the Textile Museum at the Bod of Gremista. A small collection with, as was the case everywhere we turned, pleasant and interesting people to tell us about it. That very morning I had read Kate Davies’ blog post about the MRI scanner appeal for Shetland’s hospital. Here’s the link – under the headline “Harriet’s Hat”.

The hat is a pattern which is being sold for the appeal. My finger was on the button to buy it, but then I thought, Damn it! Here I am in Lerwick! I’ll buy it over the counter. So I did.


I am surprised that Muckle Flugga left so little impression on you, Shandy and Knitlass. That probably confirms the wisdom of the Wool Adventure in not trying to see it through mist.

I’m sure you’ve heard this story before, but here it is again.

The other time I went to Shetland, I was travelling with two women I scarcely knew, internet friends but the actual acquaintance was based on no more than a pub lunch. Kristie and her cousin Kath. We covered a lot of ground, including Unst. Kristie and Kath were both very interested in lighthouses. After we visited the Unst Heritage Centre, they said they wanted to see Muckle Flugga. Kath wasn’t even a knitter, and she had been endlessly patient about our knit-related stops so I thought I could be agreeable about a detour to a lighthouse.

In those days the air force base on the northernmost tip of Unst was deserted. It has been re-occupied recently. I don’t remember that our walk from car to vantage point was very long or difficult. It may be different, with the air force in place. In those days, there were a few rusty notices saying, in effect, that if we took another step we would be shot. Kristie and Kath were a bit worried but I urged them on.

And that astonishing sight was, I would almost say, the high point of the whole trip.


  1. Anonymous2:42 PM

    A bit back, you had inquire if Madeline Weston “The Traditional Sweater Book" was named something else in the US. Nope, it looks like it is out of print - but there are currently 10 hard covered books with that name. there were about 23 - but I assume your mention of that book sold them just because of your recommendation. I was going to buy it because of its use of color, but you - at the most I can handle two colors - but really only look good in one at a time - so no. so the answer to your question is YUP - still the same name- enjoy your day.

  2. Hello Jean:)! I have been lurking for a while now, not really commenting much. Have been enjoying your posts about your trip to Shetland. Was very sorry to hear that Amy was hospitalized for pneumonia - indeed it is no fun at all! Whenever Amy is in NYC at Vogue Knitting Live I take at least one if not two of her classes. I hope she is doing better and hope there is good news of her recovery. BTW, I saw the pictures of your group and could not find one person who looked to be in her eighties:)! Your doctor is indeed correct - you do NOT look your age! Thank goodness for good genes:)! I also agree with previous commenters who said you shouldn't be concerned about others needing to care for you - you're terrific company is worth it! Take care,

    1. Thank you for this kind comment. I am the one on the far right in that photograph, in the blue jacket. Even allowing for Shetland wind, I must clearly do something about my hair soon.

  3. sorry! Should have said "YOUR terrific company..."