Fluid Dynamics

We have returned in one piece from a week traversing the weird and windy roads of Scotland. I am very, very tired, both from the amount of traveling and the stupid cold that followed me north. The end result of this is that I did a lot of sleeping in the car, and relatively little knitting, so I only have about an inch of ballgown.

Also, that thing I said about “lots of stocking stitch in the round? For the most part, that didn’t work out. It was clear from about a third of the way through the (924 stitch) cast on that “join in the round, taking care not to twist” was going to be nigh on impossible, and there was no way I was ripping out and starting again for something of that length.

Instead, I worked flat for 11 (I think) rows before trying to join the wretched thing, which meant that I ending up purling around the twisty roads by Loch Ness trying not to vomit. Teething troubles, shall we say.

Moving on…

We drank whisky:


We had a cosy fire in a little cabin while the rain lashed down:


And of course, we visited some yarn shops (and yes, also stopped to look at interesting tidal races and tea shops because that is the Yarn Widower’s thing).

Shilasdair on Skye was our first stop. They’re specialists in dyeing with plants found in the landscape around them, and if you think this means that the resulting yarns are dull or lacking in colour, then you’re in for a surprise:


I only bought three skeins, and I consider that an act of considerable restraint.

The next yarn stop of note was in Edinburgh. Ginger Twist is a stalwart of the local yarnie scene, and I couldn’t resist going in to have a smoosh. Unfortunately, budget restraints had kicked in at this point and I could only really justify getting one skein, but isn’t it a beauty?IMG_0343

The colourway is called “Tink”, and I really hope that isn’t a prophecy.

Our friends got married outside on a bridge, mercifully during a brief interlude when the sun came out. No one objected, neither participant tried to run away or said the wrong name, and the usher didn’t lose the rings.

The Yarn Widower has been, on the whole, an absolutely delightful traveling companion. However, I cannot resist (with his permission, of course) telling you about a little incident just after we arrived on Islay.

Before I begin, he would like me to note that we had been on the road for over ten hours that day, and several celebratory drams were taken upon arrival. He also accepts that I will dine out on this story for years.

The room at our B&B had a lovely freestanding tub, claw feet and all. As I was very tired, he gallantly offered to run me a bath. I accepted. When it was about half full, I went in to check on it. “Ow!” I cried, dipping a finger into the water. “That’s scalding!”

So as is logical, I went to turn on the cold tap. The Yarn Widower shooed me away, offering a convoluted explanation about how adding more hot water would make it cool down quicker. I expressed my doubts.

“I have a master’s degree in fluid dynamics,” he said firmly. “I know how to run a bath.”

At that point I left him to it, because I was far too tired to take argue, or even to point out that his master’s is actually in atmosphere and ocean dynamics. We may not be married, but part of any long-lasting relationship is picking your battles.

Now, I would love to say that I make it a personal rule never to take pleasure in the suffering of others, but that would be a lie. Schadenfreude is one of my favourite things, even when it involves people I care deeply about.

Even allowing for my usual cruelty and heartlessness, the cry of pain when he put a hand in the full, absolutely boiling tub was for some reason especially satisfying. If nothing else, it was proof that the laws of irony were still fully functional, and for that I am grateful.


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