Sunday, September 27, 2009

The damage to my car has been repaired and I have my darling back, but ever since that seemingly minor bingle (a minor accident, one of my favourite Aussie terms), I've been getting headaches. Nothing blinding, no signs of anything wrong in my back or neck. I am seeing my GP this week so I'll ask if there is any test I need. Maybe just a very mild concussion but it takes the edge off my view of the world.

The weather here has been bizarre. We've gone from highs of 24C to a high of about 8C yesterday, gale force winds, rain, dust storms (we made US national news I hear), and snow in the mountains. Poor Floriade must have their blooms a bit tattered. My apple trees and pear tree were getting ready to bloom but I don't know that they will pop until it get warmer. It's kept me out of the garden even tho the lawn needs mowing badly. My peas are up and I am enjoying asparagus.

I was hoping to get in the studio during the enforced indoor spell but instead I have been wrestling with the Big computer to get stuff off it so I can take it to recycle this week. Since it crashes every time I do anything, this takes a while. I've also spent time shredding 15 year old bank statements and other such antique documents. I'll have lots of mulch for the garden when I'm done, but these activities took most of yesterday.

I have been spinning Robin's wool and have a bobbin full. Time to ply my blue sock wool. I have knitted one round of the fair isle vest. I got the Dover reprint of Alice Starmore's Fair Isle knitting book which gave me some ideas about what to do about steeks espicially for armholes. I've done about half the top of one of the new socks.

Music is very important to me and I am firmly still age 18 when it come to most of the music I like. X2 and I were moaning about having to buy all the Beatles albums for the third time (vinyl, 1st gen CD and now remastered). We also were enjoying Cheap Trick's live performance of Sgt Pepper. A very satisfying product, considering it has never been performed live in its full form. My tastes lay mainly in power pop and what apparently is called emo because it expresses feelings. My iPod is full of bands like the Honeydogs and Five for Fighting but I'm a big fan of Eskimo Joe and Coldplay as well. I got out the Bear's big Altec Lansing sound cancelling headphones and spent yesterday listing to music while I shredded. I am bemused when iTunes classes some of my music as pop, some as rock, and some as alternative and I don't think there's that much difference in style. It's not like I was listening to Mariah Carey or Metallica. I'm always looking for indie bands and Notlame and CDbaby are favourite hunting grounds.

The Age of Homespun is not what I was expecting. It is a response to a speech, given much after the colonial and Revolutionary days, that romanticized the days when women did spinning and weaving to clothe their families. Her method is to take an exhibit of early New England artifacts and analyze both the object and its construction and its place in the social and economic life of the people who created them. For example, an Indian made purse with porcupine quill decoration leads to a discussion of the level of skill not only of the creator of the item but of the Native Americans the new settlers came in contact with, and a discussion of how the two groups interacted on many levels. There are lots of quotations from diaries showing, for example, how women would spin or weave for each other, would buy commercially prepared (imported) cloth for their Sunday best but also wove acres of homespun for domestic use. A father left his land to his sons but his movable property to his daughters and was careful that each daughter had both linen tablecloths as well as more mundane textiles. This is a scholarly work with much research evident behind the text, but it makes fascinating reading for anyone interested in textiles.

On the light side of reading I have been going through S,M, Stirling's alternative history trilogy that begins with Island in the Sea of Time.

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