29 February 2008

Circular nature of things

time may be linear, but life is not really, is it.

1) NPR. Ever wonder what is on in the middle of the night? Well, as I have the privilege of living my life five hours in the future ahead of you in NY, I can now tell you: Leonard, BBC news, and morning edition. What? Yeah, I guess they block their programs in twelve-hour blocks. The other nice thing is that two of my favorite shows - to the point and the world - are on around the time I'm making dinner here. I don't know why that's nice, but I like listening to them at that time.

2) Leap year - I don't know if this is the same in the US (anyone know?), but here, there is a tradition that says that today is the one day of the year that a woman is "allowed" to ask a man to marry her. Apparently comes from Ireland and nuns complaining that men weren't asking them to marry them, so st. patrick said he'd allow them 29 feb as a day when the nuns could ask the men to marry them. I guess this is an example of liminality.

3) Lambs! Last year around this time, I was in Brighton this week, and we drove all over sussex and there were tons of lambs. And here I am again, I went down to Brighton for two days and again lambs, lambs, lambs! I didn't even know you could have black lambs and black/white lambs. I am so lamb-ignorant. They were so cute. I asked Cardie to stop the car so I could go and look at them. They ran off when I approached (why, why? all I wanted to do was give them hugs), so I didn't get very good pictures. I've been promised to go to see lambs being birthed for my birthday. Can you imagine my happiness?

Speaking of lambs, I'm knitting another lamb for my friend Philippe, who welcomed a son to his family just a few short weeks ago.

Some pictures from Sussex, including: the seaside at Steyning, St. Botolphs (where we stopped to look at Lambs), Michelham Priory.

Also, I believe I promised you pictures of the flower market on Columbia Road, so here they are. We bought ivy for our flat. I forgot that plants were lovely - our flat in NYC was soooo dark and unsuitable for plants.

24 February 2008

Moss Seed Beret

I finished the beret, and thought it looked very film-noirish, so Rog & I went out and did a film noir photo shoot.

In other news...

This is in the window in one of the spaces in the building next door to ours:

And I got some black cumin, which I'd never had before which smells and looks different than cumin in the states: it's smoky.

22 February 2008

Random thoughts, experiences & a new project

Yesterday, I was feeling a bit blue, as I was mid-recovery from a horrible cold that really had me down for the count. I realized the only thing that might make me feel better was to finally make the trip out to iKnit. Because it is equidistant between two tube stations, one of which is on my line, I chose that line. Getting off at Oval, I encountered a pretty bleak landscape, including one lone junkie and the cricket stadium. It was grey and just starting to rain. Just as I was about to turn down Vauxhall Grove, I looked up at the sky, and the building across the street caught my eye:

Weird. Those are little lions next to the hand.

I turned down Vauxhall Grove, into a tiny cute area, and a few minutes later, arrived at iKnit. That's it, on the corner on the right side of the picture.

The shop was small and cozy, with lots of nice wool. I finally settled on some Rowan Felted Tweed in Gilt, though I did not feel guilty. I decided I need a hat, because I forgot to bring any! So, I'm making the Moss Stitch Beret. And I even learned something new: a provisional cast on.

So, there you have it, after three weeks of not knitting, I'm back on the bandwagon, or however that expression goes. Next time I go to iKnit, I might try the other tube station, Vauxhall, in case the walk is nicer.

Here's what else I've been up to:

I went to yoga today, where the teacher told me she could tell I was fearful and lacking self-confidence. In regards to my handstand, of course, not my life. And she's right. I'm definitely too scared to go upside down, and I certainly don't trust the "strength" of my puny upper arms.

Lately I've been watching (or trying to watch, the stupid BBC iplayer doesn't really work on macs) The Last Enemy. When I say "lately," I just mean last week, as it only just started. It's a little 1984-like. It's about an irritable mathematician who gets embroiled in life, politics and conspiracies. There's something downright charming about how irritable he is all the time.

The turbine hall at the Tate Modern:

Rog & I near London Bridge (like our matching scarves? both made from Karabella Camissimo):

I'm sure everyone in London has this experience of feeling that the Gherkin is ubiquitous...

Rog's brother-in-law made marmalade, which is delicious and looks beautiful. I don't like to have my bread and butter ruined by additional stuff on top, so I just eat the marmalade plain after the bread and butter, as dessert.

15 February 2008

Les Choses Laineuses

My mother was trying to translate "Woolly Stuff" and she came up with les choses laineuses, which I think sounds really nice!

14 February 2008

Hackney City Farm

On Sunday, we walked through the Columbia Road Flower Market, and then kept walking, about another 10 minutes, and we happened upon the Hackney Borough city farm. Half an hours' walk from my flat!

It's really lovely. There are chickens wandering around everywhere, and there's a nice little garden too.

This rooster is not really trying to step on the other chicken's head. It's just a trick of the lens. Ah perspective, eh?

I love the white chicken's leggings:

There were also pigs, but I didn't take pictures because I was a little scared of them. They were bigger than I am! Let sleeping pigs lie, I always say. But, there were cows (yearlings, probably), sheep, goats, a beautiful donkey, and geese. The donkey just kept walking around the periphery from person to person, and would stay as long as someone was petting him, and then the second it stopped he'd move on. He was a real cuddle whore, I have to say.

I wonder what happens to the wool after they shear the sheep? I guess I'll have to find out! The farm sold eggs, but I didn't see any wool anywhere.

Today is the first day where it's not warm and sunny. Still, I can't complain: compared to what I've heard the weather in NYC is right now, it's still mild here by comparison.

There's a school down the street from my flat, so if I'm here around mid-day, I can hear the kids playing, and it's a really nice sound.

11 February 2008

First knitting store sighting

We were down in Brighton visiting my sister-in-law, and we went to the Saturday market in nearby Shoreham. As I blithely walked along, all of a sudden, there it was...

There were shelves and shelves full of Rowan yarns. I only had £5 on me, so I only would have been able to buy one skein of something, something like a lovely burnt orange tweed - so I just bought some pins to block my pinwheel cape.

In Shoreham bay, there were all these crazy houseboats, and lots of gigantic cats.

Sunset in Brighton:

In my neighborhood, walking from my flat towards Old Street:

At a café, Brick Lane. It's hard to see in this shot, but the lamps all have paper cups attached to them.

Other knitting news: in a happy coincidence, I went up to London Fields yesterday, and found yet another knitting shop (though it was closed for a knitting lesson), Fabrications, and peering in the window, I recognized the woman because she had been in my yoga class last Wednesday! Isn't that funny?

05 February 2008

Lava lamp kettle

More pictures

First of all, yesterday's culprit:

Still, yum!

And then my day in pictures...

mmm... muesli...

Some shots from the café in the square around the corner from our flat:

White Cube

And finally, yesterday:


Sorry for the blurry pictures. I need a new camera. However, that's last in line. Today I got a yoga mat, because I'm going to yoga on Wednesday.