Friday, August 31, 2007

Is This Love?

John has spent the last 2 days sorting out my stash for me. He sorted into count and fibre. The attic is full too. My sock stash is downstairs.

Gosh, how the word stash has changed in meaning for me over the years......


These two image are of the centre of Trier, Germany. We have been here before in 2005 on our way to Lake Konstanz.

It is a nice little town and has good clothes shopping and yarn shops.

I bought a Trachten suede jacket and shirt. I love traditional German clothing (Bavarian).

It peed down with rain and we had to buy a rain mac each. I had to phone Lia to ask her what to ask for. She told us a 'regan mantel'. Not the correct spelling but by saying it we were directed to the right place and bought two long plastic ones. With added sunglasses we could have looked like cheap FBI!


These are pictures taken in the centre of Liege, Belgium, our stopover on the way to Mannheim.

The weather was wet and chilly and it really looked as if we might have then the UK's awful summer with us. We consoled ourselves with the knowledge that we were going to be visiting with people in Mannheim so maybe it won't matter if it was wet.

Liege was not pleasant. It was full, really, of street people with drink/drug problems. We are approached and harassed several times in an hour or so. I always find this difficult, having some experience as a street person myself many years ago. I was fortunate and on the streets thru fear not because of drink/drugs.

We stopped for coffee. In the gap between ordering and the waiter returning, I must have gone elsewhere in my mind because I jumped out of skin when he returned with our order. It made us both laugh, though my laugh was tinged with embarrassment. I still have over done reflexes.(exaggerated startle response)

Poor Thing

Luna Lovegood's honeymoon with Yankee was definitely successful.

Poor Luna is suffering morning sickness right now and is off her food.

She is 4 weeks tomorrow, pups due October 6th.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Nonsense!!!! My Reply

Okay, first of all this 'lovely' little email implies that people who suffer do so because they do not believe in God or do not ask for God to help.

In other words, this is just another take on the 'blame the victim' attitude. Actually, it is highly likely that the 'blame the victim' attitude is biblical.

It is also a blatant lie which stands out a mile to anyone who bothers to think. Duh!

If it were true, then no one who professes to believe in God and who prays to her, would suffer. They wouldn't get sick, no one would ever hurt them, they'd never be poor. I think you get the picture.

I know of a 3 year old who just died of cancer. They suffered. What sort of evil belief system suggests this child suffered because they did not pray or believe? Or worse because their parents didn't?

Now to the last bit of the offending email: no one KNOWS there is a God! You can believe there is, you can feel sure there is, you can be fervent in your belief. But you cannot KNOW.

No human being has access to ABSOLUTE TRUTH. We only have our ideas and the meanings we create. That is it. We do not live our lives based on absolute truth, because we cannot know TRUTH. We live our lives based on our ideas and on the meanings we have created from our experience.

Even though not mentioned in the email, I will also add that the the idea that some people have that their 'sins' are 'paid' for by someone else, that we each have our personal whipping boy, is also clearly not true, no matter how much we may wish to be absolved of out personal responsibility.

How can I feel sure of this?

Simply because we suffer and we die!

IF someone else had paid for our sins, then we would not suffer the consequences of our errors(sins). We also would not die, because the wages of (punishment for) sin is death. Even the Holier Than Thou brigade die.

I have not written about belief in a god or supreme being or divine force or whatever. I see nothing wrong in such a belief. In fact it can neither be proven nor disproved. I also find a definite atheistic point of view to be as silly as a definite religious one.

None of us knows if there is a creator or not. No matter how much we fancy we do.

My objection is to the damaging stories people have made up about God. The damage they do to children by teaching it as TRUTH. I object strongly to evil portrayed in these stories and the inability of many people to see how these stories severely damage the human race.

Also, it disturbs me greatly that people believe them.

Just as an example, there are those that believe that the story of Noah is true. Forget for a moment the Ark and the cute animals walking in 2 by 2 and how lovely Noah and his family were.


More to the point, what sort of person believes in such a monster? Could it be a person who harbours such foul feelings of revenge and destruction? Is this why they are able to accept such a God? Because their God thinks and feels the way they do?

All god's I have so far come across are made in man's image, not the other way around, and as such they very clearly display the worst components of man-the desire for worship and praise, the desire to control, the desire to destroy.

Finally, I often here people say 'if it brings them comfort to believe what's the harm? '

It harms because their comfort is at the expense of others!

It is these 'comforting' beliefs that allowed the Holocaust to happen for one, that allowed Matthew Shepherd to die the awful death he died, that allowed the 11th September attacks and countless other acts of evil.

It is this 'comfort' that allowed slavery, for women to be treated as chattels, for children to be abused(and still so). I could go on.

WHAT PEOPLE BELIEVE MATTERS. Beliefs based on error and evil , no matter how comforting to the holder, costs lives.

Just a cursory look at our world will show this is so.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Lightening Recovery

Shilpa had abdominal surgery today-late morning. By evening she was running around and later stuffed her face at meal time.

Her 'top dog' has had 6 days away and is still too knackered to post on this blog properly!

I will post more pics of the trip and also my thoughts on 'Nonsense'.

At least I have almost finished the first sock of a dark navy pair for John. I have knit them plain-the dark is just too much for anything else.


This is one of the best explanations
of why God allows pain and suffering
that I have seen. It's an explanation
people will understand.

A man went to a barbershop to have
his hair cut and his beard trimmed.
As the barber began to work,
they began to have a good conversation.
They talked about so many things
and various subjects.

When they eventually touched on
the subject of God, the barber said:
"I don't believe that God exists."

"Why do you say that?"
asked the customer.

"Well, you just have to go out in
the street to realize that God
doesn't exist. Tell me, if God exists,
would there be so many sick people?
Would there be abandoned children?
If God existed, there would be neither
suffering nor pain.
I can't imagine a loving a God who
would allow all of these things."

The customer thought for a moment,
but didn't respond because he didn't
want to start an argument.
The barber finished his job and the customer
left the shop.
Just after he left the barbershop,
he saw a man in the street with long,
stringy, dirty hair and an untrimmed
beard. He looked dirty and un-kept.

The customer turned back and entered
the barber shop again and he said
to the barber:
"You know what? Barbers do not exist."

"How can you say that?"
asked the surprised barber.
"I am here, and I am a barber.
And I just worked on you!"

"No!" the customer exclaimed.
"Barbers don't exist because
if they did, there would be no
people with dirty long hair
and untrimmed beards,
like that man outside."

"Ah, but barbers DO exist!
What happens is, people
do not come to me."

affirmed the customer.
"That's the point!
God, too, DOES exist!
What happens, is, people
don't go to Him
and do not look for Him.
That's why there's so much pain
and suffering in the world."

If you KNOW God exists,
send this to other people---
If you think God doesn't exist,
then just delete it!



The Kunstmesse Schloss at Schwetzingen, one of the places Lia took us. Beautiful gardens and follies.
The mosque in the Schloss gardens.
Mr and Mrs Peacock, also in the gardens.

Monday, August 27, 2007

German Trip

From left to right: Diana, Diana, Lia and Tina. Picture taken in Holly's home. This was the Thursday evening. The two Dianas and Tina are from the TownsendSocksKnitALong group on Yahoo.

It was a very pleasant evening spent with good company. I was very glad to have met these people. Holly, who is not in the picture, myself and the four in the picture all knit differently but we all produce the goods!

How about this then? There are 60 something steps up to Holly's home. I need not have been concerned-there is also a lift(elevator)!!! I was impressed.

There is much more to say and more pictures to show but I am still very tired so it will be added slowly.

Stash Enhancement

These are mostly for John's socks. The red, rust and light blue are beige and light grey are for me. Most of these balls cost me less than £1 (pound) per 50gm ball!The 50gm balls cost me £1 each! The Regia 100gm balls cost me about £5 each. Much cheaper than here in the UK.

Lia took us to Globus, a very large 'shop' which sold everything. It was amazing, shopping heaven. It is here I bought the cheaper sock yarn though they did sell lots of Regia.

In all the shops I went in, I saw none of the Kaffe Fasset yarn from Regia.

Strangely, the most expensive place for yarn was the department stores which sold Regia in only 50gm balls . However, it was still cheaper than the UK at only £2.80 per ball.

My Own Bed

I am back.

I have driven for 9.5 hours today and 600 miles.

I could have sworn I went 'no mail' before I left and now have hundreds to sort thru...

I will try and read and reply tomorrow or the next day.

I might even photograph the sock yarn stash enhancement.....

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Hello From Germany

At present I am in Lia's home in Sandhausen and will be driving back home in the morning. We have had a good time. Holly took us around Thursday and Friday, and Lia did today. It's been very hot. Very tired but little pain.


Saturday, August 18, 2007

Johnny Depp Done

Pretty, witty , somewhat eccentric, not overly butch.
Online Supersocke 100 Holiday Color, number 1001. 75% Superwash wool and 25% Nylon.

Knit entirely on Hiya Hiya needles, 2.25mm. 5 x1 garter rib.

German Strap Heel. Which is really just a wider , more oblong, Dutch Heel.
It seems to me this gusset and flap heel fits my foot better.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

I Just Saw....

Daniel Craig in just his socks.....

There's a Moose In The Hoose

I was sitting talking on the phone and a MOUSE ran behind John's armchair!

I thought I had seen something dart under the kitchen sink last week but it was just out of the corner of my eye and I decided it was nothing....

I have called a man to come and do his thing tomorrow.

Do you think Daniel Craig does extermination on his days off?

It's A Miracle!!!!

I couldn't stand it any more.


The mess.

What mess?

The house mess. I had run out of room to put stuff.

Something had to be done. So I did it.

I have been on my feet most of the day. I have cleaned up the kitchen, chucked a load of stuff out,driven to the tip, scrubbed surfaces, washed the net curtain, washed towels, ran the Dyson here there and everywhere.(Goodness does that Dyson suck.)

The dogs think I have gone bonkers.

My body is screaming 'what the f**k do you think you are doing?'.

In the meantime I have been doing drugs. Keeps me going and the drug companies in profit.

Okay so now I hurt like hell and am walking like I am 90 and dead but I feel good!

I accomplished it.

Later or tomorrow I am starting on the lounge.

And when John gets home, we are going to do something about my stash room. Oh, and I am going to do something about my huge collection of magazines. Knitting of course.

any suggestions about the mags would be considered. I feel at the moment I could get rid of them but that feeling may not last long......

I have done all this whilst listening to Carly and singing along. Masked the snap crackle and pops of my body.

I just hope I have not started anything up as we are going on our trip to Heidelberg next week.

My legs are screaming at me now. They just have no manners.

How About That Then?

Last night I went for my swim. When I had finished, I felt rather good and more mobile.

I needed to get something to eat from the supermarket, so I went.

For some reason, it just came to me to use one walking stick in my left hand and hold the trolley with my right. It worked.

I also found as I walked that I wasn't hurting that much.

I ended up filling my trolley with what I needed, not just the one meal for the evening.

Okay so getting it out of the car into my house was more of a challenge but it was fine, done bit by bit.

I then went as far as to chuck a chicken and vegetables and herbs and garlic and some red wine into the slow cooker (crockpot) and this morning the house is filled with the lovely aroma of my lunch for the next few days.

I am somewhat more sore today but I feel rather pleased with myself.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Bournemouth Show

Micah was 2nd in his class and Shameless was 5th in hers. 106 entered.

Daniel Craig Is Finished

Okay, Daniel Craig is done.

All done using one 100cm 2.25mm Hiya Hiya needle. 3x3 ribbing, German Strap Heel which is just an oblong Dutch Heel.

The yarn is by Regia. Nordic Colour, 5510.

(see Road To Ruin post below for explanation of the name.)

Friday, August 10, 2007


John is away. He has had to go up north to sort out family stuff after 3 deaths.

I find it rather odd. Since his dad died 30 years ago, John is head of his clan. Meaning sisters, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles etc all turn him, the 'boss'.

Weird, yes?

Weirder still is when he calls me and I feel like I am talking to a complete stranger because my BBC English speaking John has become a Geordie speaker and sounds nothing like my John.

For you Americans and Canadians, this is like your Northern state TV newsreader, Peter Jennings for example, suddenly turning round and speaking Southern Hillbilly.

When he is away, meaning not here at weekends, it really does send it home to me how I might be quite stuffed on my own. I can't go and do a proper shop. So I have to make do with the odd bits I can get in the supermarket till he gets back next weekend.

I rarely let thoughts of the future impinge on me but every so often it does enter my mind that maybe he will get too old and infirm to help me or that I will get so much worse, it is progressive, that he wouldn't be able to anyway.

I would seriously rather die than a. be separated or b. end up in a nursing home, even if it was together. John feels the same.

I'd rather go out with a bang than a whimper.

But I don't think about it and live each day as it comes. It is the only way to live for anyone really. It is certainly the only way to live with a disease that causes 24/7 pain. You learn to really appreciate the less pain days and the bad pain days pass eventually.

And for now I'd rather hurt and still be living a good life, which I do, I don't let it stop me. The day it stops me is the day I get off the bus. Before the medicos and the law take my choices away.

Regia Sock

Regia Nordic colour , colour number 5510.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Road To Ruin

I finished my 4th second sock today.

That was it, I promised, I will get on with my sweaters now on the machines, especially that cashmere swatch just waiting to be measured and a sweater knit from it's info.

I tidied up the living room. I put all my sock yarn in the plastic sets of draws I bought a couple of weekends back.

So far so good.

Yes, I could feel the flutter in my tum. I could see completed socks in my mind's eye as I am diligently putting the balls away and closing the draw.

Then it happened.

I found a ball I didn't know I had. The Daniel Craig of yarn balls. Well the flutter in my tum broke into waves, I ripped off that ball band, picked up my Hiya Hiya's and I cast on. I then spent from then till now(bed time) knitting up Mr Craig.

Stuff the tidying up and the sweater.....

My name is Colin and I am powerless over sock keep your hands off and back away sloooooowly....

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Luna Lovegood

Luna has had three successful visits to her beau, Yankee.

Puppies due 5th October or thereabouts.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Monday, August 06, 2007

Narrow Toes

This is a toe from a pair of socks found on the net.

I just do not understand why anyone would knit this sort of toe. They don't fit, don't look good. They are knit toe up. They really need to be cast on much wider so they fit the foot.

What beats me, is that they are knit from well known designer patterns. I cannot understand why otherwise excellent patterns/socks are ruined in this way.

Am I missing something?

If you knit your toes this way and are happy with them, fine, I am not knocking anyone on a personal level.

I just don't get why a toe that doesn't fit or look good is followed by so many knitters.

The photo has been manipulated colour wise and cropped so the original is not recognisable.

How to Make It Worse

Well if you read this blog, you'll know that yesterday was not a brilliant day for being intelligent.

What you may not know is how I made it worse, or rather ensured today would not be a good one.

We went out to a meeting last night,(the speakers were not good) and whilst here I had a rather bad attack of stomach acid pain. Got my medicine out of the car and it had gone off so I drank a gob full of milk and it went way.

I was really sensible when I got home. I could not be bothered cooking so I ate two sandwiches instead.

What is wrong with that I here you ask? Plenty if you are allergic to most starches, especially wheat.

I also took a 40mg dose of Protium since I had already that stomach acid attack.

I was up early, feeling crap, and was gone from here by 6.30am to take Luna for another visit to her beau. Got back, exhausted, ate sensibly and went to bed. About an hour after I got up again, I started to get bad stomach pain.

This pain usually starts in my right side, about where the ribs start, and moves over up my middle. I took the antacid and nothing happened, the pain didn't abate, or rather it did but was back within seconds, and more severe.

In short, two more doses and a shot of milk and 30 minutes later it subsided. During that time, I also took my GTN spray which had no effect I but I took it because I could feel the beginnings of panic. I also took deep breaths easily. So I could breath well, the GTN did nothing to relieve my pain, so it wasn't my heart. I took poor Micah for a walk(as he is frustrated as I have girls in season and he can't mate the. He is being remarkably well behaved.)

It has passed now and I feel okay apart from now having diarrhoea and gas! (I am sure you wanted to know that!)

So not only did I feel bad for the car fiasco but I then go and make it all much worse by eating what I know will make me sick! (Yet telling myself it won't!)

So I proved yet again that certain foods I cannot eat safely and that Protium doesn't really work so why bother to take it?

The car thing is no big deal in the scheme of things, I know, and it could have been so much worse. Sometimes I don't have a clue as to why I make the wrong choice when I know so well how to take care of myself.

In the end, the car thing was not the worst thing that happened but what I did to myself.

Sunday, August 05, 2007


We got up at 5am to go to a dog show. On the way I stopped at a garage to fill my car.

I filled my diesel engine with unleaded petrol !!!!!!!!!!!!

If it hadn't overflowed, I would not have realised my mistake until I had driven off and the car would have been ruined. Thankfully I knew not to turn the engine on.

Three hours later we are at home having been towed here by the AA. Now I am just waiting for the company to arrive that will empty the tank and flush the engine out.

This will cost £200 (about $400).

Honestly, I don't know where my brain is sometimes. On the Continent(mainland Europe) this couldn't happen because the Diesel pumps are not in the same place and the nozzle wouldn't have fitted my car anyway.

The man just arrived and told me that yes, the nozzles are made in such a way that
a diesel will not fit a petrol car but a petrol will fit a diesel! Fat lot of good that does me!

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Perfect Timing

I took Luna Thursday night to visit her beau and she told him to **** off.

Not interested.

I took her this morning(Saturday) and she was a complete harlot.

A good time was had by all.

Due date is 5th October. (Now I think I know what my dream was about as it gave me that precise date but week sago so did not connect with this. I have an important show on the7th so .....)

Friday, August 03, 2007

Power - less

I have had particularly bad pain for many weeks. Last Sunday when John were out listening to a talk, I could have cried the pain was so bad.

I awoke Monday to find it had all gone. Oh, I still creak, snap, crackle and pop and can't walk far but the bad pain just stopped.

During this time my hands have been fine and I have knitted a lot. Now the bad pain in my hips and limbs has abated, my hands are acting up again!

I also discovered that my mood is definitely affected by my pain levels. DUH! Yes, well I hadn't really made the connection. Denial is not always a bad thing you know.

On Monday I noticed my mood was better and by Tuesday it was definitely up. So being relatively pain free improved my mood.

I also realised that when I am suffering a lot, there is no point in trying to figure out why or think about what I might have done to make it so. It just comes and goes and there is nothing I can do about it. I think by trying to find something I can pin on myself as the cause, is my way of not dealing with the fact I am powerless over this damned disease.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Thoughts For Today

My education finished at 15. On days when I feel pretentious, I fancy having letters after my name.

It occurred to me I still could:

Colin ****** CHD, RA, OA, FMS, OCD

(Edit: I thought they'd be recognisable so: coronary heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and obsessive compulsive disorder....the last condition just involves yarn....)

Looks good, yes?

When I was a teen and young adult, I was anorexic.

I wish I had known then that all I needed to do to be invisible was be in a wheelchair.

I'd have saved myself a lot of anguish and more to the point could have eaten what the f**k I wanted to.....

Sherman Heel

I couldn't wait to finish the sock before I showed the heel.

Each time I have done this heel, I did it differently, hoping to tidy it up.

I am really pleased with this one. I think it is my final recipe.

Not a great deal different from
Mary's original heel. I do not have any wraps, I knit on one ML (tho as I am knitting back and firth for the heel that doesn't matter) and instead of S1 purlwise, I slip knitwise on knit rows and purwise on purl rows and slip the encroachments as directed.

Also when i first did this heel, I slipped the first stitch on the way back after the pivot row by mistake but I liked it. Later, I discovered that Janine does it that way.

I think it makes it look much neater.