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Friday, September 26, 2008

Tee Hee

Needless to say, any vapours emanating from this particular toilet were not of the sanitizing kind.


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Gatos Varios

Bridget asked if we saw any cats living in the Coliseum. We saw where they used to keep the lions (and heard several stomach turning tales of the shenanigans they were involved in), but no sign of cats. However, we found them elsewhere:
A cat sleeping in the middle of the day - imagine that!
This is a cat sanctuary close to the Pantheon. All the cats that live there are neutered and vaccinated. The sun was starting to set, hence the grainy picture. It looks like an old archeological dig site - at least one square city block. I'm sure there were 20 or 30 cats sitting on top of various walls and columns when we walked by.
We spent our second week at a villa in Tuscany which was home to Mamacita and The Little Fella (or at least that's what we called them)
Mamacita had interesting colouring - like a Siamese, without the facial features or annoying yowling. She was very calm and collected.
The Little Fella was extremely cute, and a bit of a handful. It was hard to catch a picture of him since he never stopped moving (unless he was napping, of course).
Because my first Zephyr Quilt Wrap photo was not the best (what is it with flash photography and knitting?), I decided this morning to take advantage of our southern exposure to take a better picture. Of course, laying knitting down on a flat surface has a predictable effect in our house:
Somerset seat
I can't believe those Italian cats got top billing.
kitty toes
Don't feel bad about the lack of mohair halo - I've got plenty of fur to donate!
squares 1-22
I was eventually able to extricate Somerset, so here's a better photo - I've now up to block 23. It's going to be amazingly light.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Rome, if you want to...

We had a great holiday. And then I went back to work.

Needless to say, I still haven't recovered from last week, so I haven't finished uploading all of my holiday photos onto my laptop, let alone sorted them out and uploading them onto Flickr.

So here is a half assed limited selection:
The Trevi Fountain. Legend is that if you face away from the fountain and throw a coin into it over your shouler, you will return to Rome some day. In actual fact, there are so many people crowded around it that you'd probably take out someone's eye.
The closest I got to a yarn shop in Rome - this was a Diesel display window on the Via Corso. The Gambler went inside to check - no yarn for sale inside.
It's good to cover all of the bases.
What really struck me the most was the fact that this is both a modern and an ancient city. This little enclave was at the edge of an archeological dig just down the road from the Coliseum. Are the tiles 40 years old or 400? I have no idea.
The Coliseum. What remains of it, that is. Turns out that recycling has been all the rage here for some time. All the marble was harvested years ago - some of it used by the Christians for their churches, some burned to yield lime for cement.

More to come. I promise. Really.

On the knitting front, I decided that post holiday ennui was best addressed by casting on for a new project (Although I was technically on call the day after we came back, the weekend was super quiet, so I spent some quality time with the cats).

I visited Acorn Street Yarns in Seattle just after the Sea Socks cruise. They had a bin full of mini skeins of Jaggerspun Zephyr Wool-Silk laceweight yarn. Brenda Dayne had been wearing a Modern Quilt Wrap on the cruise, so I sat down on the floor and selected about 14 different colours that I thought worked well together.
Turns out that the pattern only calls for 9 different colours - so I narrowed it down to these ones to use for The Zephyr Quilt Wrap:
wrap yarns

I tried to organize the colours that I selected from darkest to lightest, and to do the same with the colours that the pattern calls for, and then replace them in that order. In retrospect, I don't know if it makes that much difference - I think that she distributes the colours pretty evenly throughout the schematic.

Squares 1-12
It was very fiddly to start - between the laceweight yarn slipping off of the relatively large needles, and trying to weave in the ends as I changed colours, and the squares being very distorted initially. It didn't help that the first 4 squares were the small ones. But now I definitely have the hang of it. It's one of those "just one more square" type projects that is hard to put down.

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

We're back!

Well, Internet access wasn't that great during our trip - hence the blog silence. Alot was happening in North America in the last 2 weeks; it was interesting to hear about it through the filter of European news sources.
I of course have a million things to do before I am back to work tomorrow; but I can upload one vacation pic:

Me knitting on the Spanish Steps. In the evening, it's a popular place to just hang out - not so much in the morning. Right after I sat down, I realized that works out well if your job is to hose down the steps daily - water doesn't dry very quickly early in the day.