I finished knitting the stripy cowl a while ago and did my best to have a go at grafting it but my poor old befuddled brain couldn't get a grip on it at all. In fact, I just made a mess which I then had to unpick. Sometimes it's best to give up before you've started. However, an enormously kind knitting-and-blogging friend offered to help me out - I shan't give her away here, or you'll all be sending your unfinished garments to her - and I wrapped it up with the spare ball of yarn and sent it off, enclosing a little something to sweeten the task. When I was filling in the Customs slip (because yes, I send my garments overseas for finishing) I wrote 'Woollen scarf' and thought, 'I won't mention the chocolate on here, and then it'll be a surprise for her when she opens it.' Only after I'd posted it did I think that perhaps Customs might think I was concealing it from them. (I told you I was befuddled.)
Three weeks later it still hadn't arrived. Airmail to the U.S. usually takes about a week, sometimes even five days, and I've never known it to take more than two weeks, except when there was some sort of complication going on, like terrorists or Christmas. So I had pretty well written it off: I decided that the sniffer dogs had opened it and eaten the chocolate.
While I was facing that ghastly possibility I considered whether I would be prepared to knit it again but decided I couldn't really face it: it would just have to be written off. So imagine my joy when I received an email saying that it had arrived, intact, and on Hallowe'en - perhaps the Universe, which I understand sometimes takes an interest in these things, had decided to deliver it on the most chocolatey night of the year. Thank you, Universe.
I spend an inordinate amount of time on Twitter these days but don't actually follow many knitters so it was pure chance I picked up this gem, tweeted by Sophie Hannah, the novelist, to fellow novelist Ian Rankin:
@beathhigh My mum heard someone at library requesting 'Glorious Knitting' by Yasser Arafat. 'You mean Kaffe Fassett,' librarian said.
— Sophie Hannah (@sophiehannahCB1) October 23, 2012Isn't that brilliant? My mother loved malapropisms and she would have treasured that one.
It's topical too, because Kaffe is making an appearance in Edinburgh shortly, organized by John Lewis. It's on 29 November, which is a Thursday, at 6.00 p.m. He'll be talking about his new book, his autobiography, Dreaming in Colour.
His talk is being held in the Café Camino which is the café at St Mary's Cathedral, just across the road and down from the back entrance to JL, in Little King Street. Tickets are £10 each and you can buy them in the Haberdashery at JL, or by phone on 0131 556 9121 extension 4809.
He'll sign his books too, either the new one or old ones that you bring along (looks at shelf, wonders how many she can carry...). I'm looking forward to it. Just don't expect Yasser Arafat to be there. For so many reasons.