Spun Yarn 98
Greetings from Wiltshire, in the United Kingdom!
It's a lovely warm evening, a little sultry perhaps with the possibility of thunder in the offing. The air is trilling to the sounds of happy song birds and bell ringing practice from the nearby village ...and now I do hear that distant thunder. Yup, John and I are back on the canals on a narrowboat!
We've been with this boat, Ali's Dream, for over a month(!) already and have moved on each day. Travelling 8 -10 hours a day feels like a great distance, but our pace is comparatively slow.
We picked the boat up just outside of Chester, and headed south towards Wolverhampton. Here we connected with the new-to-us Staffordshire and Worcestershire canal (opened in the 1770s). We followed this canal all the way to Worcester. The old warehouses, lock keepers cottages and toll houses are beautiful.
There is something magical in arriving by water and chugging through the heart of an ancient city. You form a side-show for all the patrons of the various
canal side pubs.
Gongoozlers abound in a city or tourist area: these are passersby who enjoy watching the boat and lock activities on the canal. The nicest will stop, chat and ask questions. Others stare and say nothing. Many pics are taken!
From here we skirted south of Birmingham
and headed towards Oxford
and the Thames.
The Thames was a new experience: this wide river is alternately wooded
or edged by magnificent properties with enormous lawns that run down to the river. These often feature a dock and a boat house large enough to live in!
turned right and continued our journey, now along the
Kennet and Avon
waterway heading to Bath
(it's called a waterway rather than a canal as it mixes river and canal sections).
We spent some time in the port of
It's hard to say why I love the narrowboat life so much.
Every morning, as the engine rumbles into life, I just smile. As I let go the lines and we chug away from wherever we have spent the night, I find myself in eager anticipation of the number of locks ahead, or interesting villages that we will pass through. As we travel, I spend my time looking all around. The hedges and gardens are full of spring flowers. We arrived just in time to see the last of the primroses, daffodils, a carpet of blue bells and now the lilacs and wild yellow flags (iris) are blooming, too. The fields are germinating fast now, broad beans are springing up, the asparagus is in full flood. It's been a delight to watch.
Our days generally run from early morning until dinner time. This hasn't left me much time for ambitious knitting thus far. However, I did bring with me the
27 new yarn colours of sport weight Blue Faced Leicester, and have found a few moments to experiment with this luscious yarn. It is our special yarn, ordered for the knitters attending my September
Knitting on the Wild Side Camps
and hopefully we will have some available to
non-campers later this year.
Wishing you Happy Stitches,
Back in the days of paper-only patterns, we were fortunate to
sell wonderful designs by Ilga Leja
and Catherine Vardy in addition
to Lucy patterns. Our new website, the transition to digital photos,
and various other technicalities now prevent us from marketing these
This is your last chance to snap up some of these wonderful, but now-neglected, patterns (including some of my own old style patterns). Rather than putting them into a landfill, we have been offering them as a collection! For $10 Cdn (plus shipping and applicable taxes), you will receive a surprise package of 10 diverse patterns.
The range of designs is very wide! There are mittens (fulled and otherwise), tams, booties, shawls, scarves, socks, hats and sweaters--to name but a few. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
You'll find this special pattern collection, and many more sale items, in the Clearance section of my website.
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