The knitting project did not get off to a good start. Not having done any for quite some time, I had forgotten about the potential for a big tangled mess when trying to roll the skeins into balls, particularly without a spare pair of helping hands. The first one took me over 2 hours and gave me neck and backache as, naturally, I was not paying attention to health and safety as I stooped over the table. The second one I wound over a stool and all went well until it fell off and the ensuing cat’s cradle took more than a little while to untangle. The third, after an initial hiccup, actually went according to plan, thank goodness. I have left the remaining skein until I need it!
At last, I commenced the actual knitting. It is basically a plain pattern to which I am adding one small panel from another pattern that involved a number of slip stitches and knitting 2 togethers. How simple can it be? I have never, in the past, had problems with this but, for some reason, I kept losing stitches. Where did they go? I debated with myself – could I get away with the mess? Will it show? I decided ‘no I couldn’t’ as ‘yes it would’. A lot of unpicking and re-knitting and, hopefully, I am now making progress.
In the midst of my mental debate (to unpick or not to unpick), my Almost Kiwi Bloke (henceforth AKB) neighbour turned up. Unfortunately, Bubba doesn’t like him. I am surprised that AKB even ventured over here as he had had his earlobe bitten off (and sewn back on) as a child by a dog of a similar breed (whatever that is) and was, understandably, a bit apprehensive. At least Bubba didn’t break the skin this time as it was only a little nip.
Over a cup of tea, he talked about his writing, mainly fiction and poetry, which he had done since he was a child even though he had been a bad scholar and not good at English. After being told by some judges of a writing competition in Wanaka (N.Z.), that they really liked his story but he needed to pay attention to his grammar and spelling, he set out to learn some. A lady in a copy shop gave him instructions on how to use a ‘stick’ after he brought his whole computer in each time he wanted to print! He joined online writing groups, discovered software that would help him and slowly, but surely, he learned the art of writing. Today, he had sent off his first story to be published so was feeling very pleased.
He is currently working (or ‘playing’ as he describes it) on renovating his house, which appears to be a long term project that is actually coming to an end. (I have sympathy for his partner!) Apparently he has been through over 30 employees this year as he doesn’t tolerate people who arrive late, shirk work or don’t turn up at all. Not surprisingly, in this small town, he has a reputation for being a hard man (of which he seems quite proud) but is only enforcing the values taught to him by his father and grandfather in the building trade years ago. Once the project is finished, he wants to return to a life travelling on the water, which is what he had done years ago, staying in places for weeks or months at a time and meeting his partner, who is not so keen on the sea, in the various ports.
It appears that one does not have to venture out the door to have a very interesting day!