Gill came to pick me up for Knit & Natter yesterday – I was a little dubious about the state of the roads for walking and she wanted me to bring stuff that I would not have carried had I been on foot. We sold a couple more Colours of Shetland and are down to two copies now, so move fast if you want one. Everybody who sees this book is completely charmed by it. We discussed the possibility of a Colours of Shetland  K&N KAL – and agreed that would be great fun but everybody voted for a finish on the Lady’s Cape first! Indeed, that was what I was working on yesterday afternoon…

The cape progresses, but slowly. Just because it landed lightly on my desk is, by the way, no reason for me to suppose that I am ahead on my finishing schedule. It is late January now and I still have to address the knotty problem of the handspun Aestlight. It would have been great to report that as an FO today but frankly? I have been nowhere near it. It has been a busy week and I need quiet and time alone to tackle the maths.

Gill and I left K&N early, to go across to the school for the after school Knitting Group. The kids were much more settled this week, less nervous of doing wrong, and made some progress on their garter stitch. We hope to try purling next week!

Mr L picked me up from the school and announced that the Land Rover had a problem and we may have difficulty getting home… he had turned the corner by the school and the exhaust had started to blow. A cursory glance in the late afternoon gloom suggested that the pipe might drop off at any moment. In the event, it got us home but when examined in what today passes for daylight, it is pronounced Completely Knackered. We are now immobile until a new Stainless Steel exhaust can be purchased and delivered. Normally no bad thing and would lead to plenty of exercise and fresh air but I have run out of potatoes – also we are in desperate need of a visit to the recycling point. At least today’s rain is clearing the snow and slush so that when I don my backpack the walking will not be so difficult. I resent walking all the way to the shop and back to only bring a couple of items home, though – those potatoes will not leave room for much else in my bag.

I have been spinning this week – inspired by  Jennifer’s visits to card fibre earlier this week, I got my wheel out and spun while I kept her company. Unfortunately, that squeak returned. It got louder and louder and more annoying. I oiled. The squeak stayed. This did not stop me from returning to my spinning in the evening after tea and finishing my bobbin (half my fibre.)

Last night we lit the fire in the sitting room and I took my wheel down there, to spin in company as Mr L read his magazine. With a glass of sherry by my side, the dogs at foot,  the cats lightly toasting, and music playing, it was very pleasant… or would have been if it were not for that damn squeak! I oiled. I waxed the leather footmen. I anointed the leather hinges with body lotion. Still it squeaked. In the end it got so bad that I announced that even I had been beaten into submission and was going to put the wheel away. Mr L put down his mag and rigged up a stethoscope arrangement, the better to identify the source of the noise. That failed. He scrabbled around the floor, ear to the wheel, still uncertain. It was an exhaustive search and it yielded nothing… until he went away to Google and I tried something out. Guess what? The squeak was absent when the wheel spun anti-clockwise. That being so, I determined that the source of the squeak could not be the treadles.

We tried again. In the end, we disconnected a footman from the treadle and worked the wheel with the one treadle connected. No squeak. After reassembly, the squeak had gone. No idea why. Not only had the squeak gone, but the wheel was suddenly so much smoother and easier to operate. We can only assume that something in the leather’s attachment at the crank end was causing it to rub and operating the crank with  the footman  disconnected acted to clear whatever the grot was. I am happy. I will be more likely to sit and spin now and will feel able to show my face and my wheel at spinning group again without embarrassment.

The only thing is… will it slow down the work on the KAL Cape edging, now that I can spin for protracted periods?

Maybe too protracted yesterday… I have a few aches and pains today – though these may be attributable to sitting on chairs designed for 4 year olds.

Right! I need to crack on. There is lunch to cook, bread to bake, and I promised Mr L some cake box goodies today. I need to get all that done before Jennifer returns to do more carding and I sit down to spin with her.

No FOs this week. I really, really hope to have one next week but it looks increasingly unlikely. I just don’t feel any love for that Aestlight. Perhaps I shall frog. Of course, if I do that, or simply neglect it, I may at least have a Spinning FO to show. What a joy that would be, it has been a long time since the last one.

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