Thursday, November 20, 2003

I didn't get around to posting a photo last night, but I swear I had a good reason: I couldn't stop knitting. I promised a friend "bright socks" for Christmas, so last night on my way home I popped into the nearest yarn store for supplies. I thought I'd pick up some Crazy Colors, but then I found some beautiful wool! The brand is Soft Feather, which is plentiful in Taipei shops but impossible to find on the Internet. I guess it's a light worsted weight (50g = 80m), but it's made up of twelve thin plies, and each ply is variegated, and they are twisted together. Any given length of this wool might include yellow, orange, red, two shades of blue, bright pink, light green, purple, and/or dark gray. I just snipped half an inch from one end and pulled it apart: two yellow threads, one green, one red-to-orange, one bright pink, four pink-to-purple, two gray-to-green, and one gray-to-blue. I hope that makes sense. Anyway, I bought two balls of this beautiful (and soft!) stuff and began a toe-up sock last night. Toe-up because I don't want to run out going the other way. I used the square toe to start, which was a little tricky but not hard, and it looks great. I'm using 3.25 mm dpns, so the fabric is quite dense (56 stitches around the foot). They'll be very warm wool socks. Unlike some other variegated yarns, the colours in this sock are really mixed. Sometimes a variegated sock yarn ends up making a pattern; two of the colours always end up side by side, for example, or all of one colour ends up on one side of the sock. But this isn't happening at all, since every little stitch is a little different. My only complaint is that some of the beauty of the yarn is actually lost when it's knitted up, because it's hard to see each individual colour, but these are going to be beautiful socks. (Hear that, 2L? They're for you!)

Here's a Taipei moment for you, so you can imagine my world a little better: As I was walking from the MRT (subway) station to the office this morning, I saw on one of those lighted signs atop a building that it was 23 degrees Celsius. I'm wearing a sleeveless T-shirt, a light hoodie, a knee-length skirt, and sneakers. The sky was gray, and the ground was wet from overnight rain, but it wasn't raining.

I keep meaning to outline a day of mine for you, because there are all kinds of little things that I see every day that are funny, or interesting, or strange, or whatever. I'll try to do that someday, if you're interested. Life in Taipei is somehow both completely different and not all that different from life in the West.

I'm going to Singapore for three days next week! Just for fun. My passport shows that I've left Taiwan about every three months since I've been here. Three months seems to be my sanity threshold for this city! I've been back from Canada only two months, so this is a preemptive strike. :)

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