My knitting preparation for any kind of trip away from home often takes the following form...
It usually begins the morning of the day I'm going, or the night before if it's going to be an early start. If I'm mid-project (let's face it, that's most of the time!) I make a pile of the stuff I'm going to need for that project - a couple of spare balls of yarn, any additional needles, and my 'knit kit' of measuring tape/scissors/pins/needles/stitch markers/bits of spare yarn for provisional cast-on/stitch holders and a bundle of sock needles.
But then the FOKB factor sets in. That's Fear Of Knitting Boredom. How can I possibly go on a five day trip to the USA, which as well as transatlantic and internal flights, includes airport waiting time and lone hotel stays - with ONLY ONE PROJECT?!
So then I start panicking - got to take a sock project. But which one? And have I got the right yarn? There ensues the printing of many different patterns from Knitty, followed by annoyance because the sock pattern I want to do is actually in a big hardback book and I haven't got a scanner or photocopier to hand so I'll have to take the whole book because this one is DEFINITELY the one I want to do and none of the others will suffice. I'll admit, once I did actually start copying out a pattern onto a piece of scrap paper half an hour before I was due to leave the house. Luckily I realised the futility of it by the second row.
So let's imagine I've settled on a pattern that's not in a hardback book. But will I be able to remember how to do Judy's magic cast on? Oops, better print out a crib sheet for that too. What about the sewn cast-off or a picot edging? Got to go back on the internet and look for a simple crib sheet I can print for those two.
By this stage I have become something of a nervous wreck and am gathering up most of my stash, a whole set of Denise needles and a box of sock needles as back-up. This is the point when I usually toss some random items in my suitcase and add book and Ipod as a back-up. Despite the FOKB factor, it usually does the trick.
Tomorrow I'm off to the Isle of Wight for a week with the Curse. It will be the first week we have been away together for a week since Devon in September 2007. Family commitments mean that we have been spending most of our weekends apart since then, so these coming seven days seem more valuable than ever.
We are planning nothing more than a bit of walking, some food and drink, perhaps a hunt for red squirrels (inspired by Jane!) and possibly some easy cycling. There may be swimming, but there will definitely be knitting!
The extent of my excitement about the holiday is obvious from the fact that I've been planning what projects I'm taking for several days now! Yesterday I made a trip to IKnit to stock up with sock yarn for a couple of Pay it Forward gifts I'm planning, an Ipod cosy I promised, and an upcoming teacosy birthday present.
I've checked the sock needles (straight AND circs, to suit my mood!) I've got a stock of pattern possibilities (some new to me, some I've done before) and I've even got a few things lined up to take to the photocopy shop tomorrow morning. And we're not even planning to leave till early afternoon!
Are you more organised than me, or does my normal planning phase sound horribly familiar?!
The National Archives
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