I've just got back from a weekend in Leamington Spa (see, fab new job, means I have the time and energy at weekends to go and visit friends!) visiting a couple of friends who live in the area. It was surprisingly quick to get there, only about an hour and a half up the M40. It's weird how the country seems to have smallified itself since I started zooming all over the place in the car (yes, I know, carbon footprint...). I went to stay with Edward on Friday night, and on Saturday accompanied him to horse-riding. I could have joined in, but with a really snotty cold (Anne, writing-with-a-cold-effects please) decided I'd be better off sitting in his Land Rover. But that did mean my sock knitting got a ring-side view...
This is another pair of Garter Rib socks (from Sensational Knitted Socks). The yarn is the unbranded green mixture I got from the Skep on last year's Skip North, and I'm magic looping on 2.5mm/100cm Addis. These will be for Fiona, who gave me her old ipod last month when she upgraded. She didn't want anything for it so I thought I'd make her a pair of socks as a thank you.
This morning I visited Baddesley Clinton with Helen, and we walked around the grounds, admiring the daffodils just beginning to put in an appearance. This is part of the moat:
and from t'other side. It was a bit weird being there as a punter, rather than coming to catalogue books...
And, one of the other projects I have on the go at the moment is a tank top from the Twilleys Freedom Spirit pattern book. This is in the Freedom Spirit (colour = Fire) which I also bought on Skip North last year!
I have started the Wrapover cardigan from the same book, but that's on hold at the moment as I have several other things to knit for other people.
I think I mentioned last time that I'd found a reading group in Windsor to join too. Last month we read "Kafka on the Shore", which was kind of bizarre but very readable and enjoyable. It easily filled an hour's discussion at the group! I loved the way the two parallel plot-lines intertwined round each other. This month's book is "On Chesil beach", which I've already read, and really really enjoyed. It's one of those unputdownable ones, where every single word counts. At the moment I'm part way through "Affluenza", which is interesting, a bit disturbing. Does money buy happiness? Probably not, but people seem to be sucked into a cycle of wanting more and more things, so that, no matter how much they earn, it's never enough to have everything. James travels around comparing attitudes towards possessions and money in various countries. He doesn't seem to touch on how this applies to yarn (and books) though.
I also read "Helpless" a few weeks ago - a bit disturbing, again. This one is about a child abduction and portrays the story from several points of view, including the child, the mother and the abductor (and his girlfriend). I didn't quite get as far as empathising with the abductor, but it was chilling how close I came. The book was released around the time Madelaine McCann disappeared last year, so wasn't really promoted at the time.
For Christmas I received "The gentle art of domesticity", which I loved. I am still reading it, as it's definitely a book to be dipping into. The photographs are as good as on her blog. I'm also still reading "The Christmas stories", which was meant to be my Advent book, but Advent got a bit taken up with starting the job and moving (three times!), which is why I'm still reading it in Lent. I decided against starting a Lent book...
I'm going to be away for the next six weekends (Newark, Lincoln, Bristol, Exeter, Keswick, Penrith amongst other places. Anyone want to meet up? Let me know!). Unfortunately I'm also attempting the Tearfund Carbon Fast for Lent, and failing miserably as I'm zooming round the country. But I have still reduced my mileage from the previous job, and I have done some of the other things (turned down the heating, only filled the kettle with the right amount of water, re-used envelopes). And I do walk to work, it's just at the weekends it goes a bit wrong. Well, that's my excuse anyway.