Thursday, January 14, 2021


2377 steps. I should be able to reach 2500 before I go to bed. Yesterday I got to 3000 – and you may well be right, Janet, that I was pushing too hard. Thank you for that thoughtful comment. Mary Lou, no, I don’t think all this measured walking is improving my energy – but cider-less-ness might be.


I’ve reached round 35 of the borders of Gudrun’s hap. No. 33 was a pattern round, and it was indeed fun to have all those markers in place. I found an extra stitch at one point. I made sure that it hadn’t crept in under the marker from one side or the other. It hadn't, so I just got rid of it. In lace, as in Fair Isle, one is guided by the row below and that’s almost impossible with feather-and-fan. (or Old Shale, if you prefer.) There are five plain rounds in between each pattern round and it’s very difficult to “read” precisely what happened where, last time. I don’t think garter stitch makes it any easier, either. But markers work. There are now only two more pattern rows between me and the end, but there are a lot of stitches and progress is slow.


I got some indoor steps on the scoreboard today by putting away knitting books which have been piling up around the computer. Sometimes I bring new books in here to tell you about them, and never get around to finding a place for them. Sometimes I bring old faves in, to illustrate some point or other, and don’t put them away. So that was a good job done. And I found Hoxbro on Danish night shirts (see yesterday).


Shandy, I pressed on a bit with “Barchester Towers” and now I’ve got women all over the place: the Stanhope girls, Eleanor’s sister Mrs Grantly, the inimitable Mrs Proudie, Mary Bold in the background. I agree that Eleanor scarcely deserves to be described with the ivy simile. Mrs Ray, on the other hand, Rachel’s mother, also a widow, was a great one for taking advice from the most recent person to have offered it to her and indeed drives the plot forward by doing so.


Coronavirus news continues grim (and the doctor’s website continues to say that he “expects” to receive vaccine today). I feel increasingly gloomy about prospects for our cruise in May.


  1. And so what do you make of the two Stanhopes, more particularly, Charlotte, who gets less of the limelight? Is there a hint of androgyny there, do you think?

  2. You are sounding quite cheerful Jean! I suffer from S.A.D. (as does my father) and I find going outside every day, getting some extra light, on short days really helps my mood. That combined with a little extra exercise can make a big difference.

  3. To really tell the difference, I think the step counting needs to be done for at least a month. Your writing seems more cheerful to me on the days you get out. I know a little fresh air helps my mood

  4. Regarding Feather and Fan/Old Shale I agree on the challenges. While on my knees on the floor blocking Brindabella the other day I found a dropped stitch in the middle of a feather and fan section. I put a safety pin in it and fudged it later. I hope it doesn't show too badly. A dark color, at least.