A few posts back, I talked about choosing this road trip project, a simple lace wrap. I've knitted it before. There are four rows in the pattern, including two purl rows and one knit row. Row Three is an easily memorized pattern of yarn overs, two stitch stockinette columns and a few Purl 3 Togethers, which should be no challenge for loose lace knitters (or lace knitters who knit loosely). The borders are garter stitch. Nothing to it, right? "Ha!" said the Knitting Goddesses.
Apparently, the KG's have snatched away my ability to count to three. Or five. Expecting me to get through one row of fifty-one stitches without ending up a stitch short or over seems to be out of the question. Even garter stitch alludes me. It may look as though I've made progress (and I have, I guess):
The problem is that the piece should be twice as long. When I'd knitted about 25 cm, I discovered two things: a mistake in the stitch count which misaligned the columns and a dropped stitch, at about 10 cm, which didn't ravel until I stretched out my knitting to check the approximate size. Then, the stitch kindly made itself known by running back as far as it could get. (Lifelines? I don't need no stinkin' lifelines!) There was nothing for it but to tink back to the beginning of the run at about the 5 cm mark. Sigh. Meditation Wrap, indeed.
The problem was discovered on Day Three and repaired on Day Four. It's Day Ten and I finally mustered up the courage to pick up where I left off. (Of course, it's been too hot to work on the fuzzy, woolly sock I chose for Project #Two.) Things seem to be going well. There may be a minor error about 8 cm back, but I'm choosing to ignore it on the grounds that it is really a blocking issue. (It will be, one way or the other.) My daughter's neighbours may be wondering why the newcomer on the patio counts continually and in such a strange rhythm: "1, 2, 3, 4, 5," for the border; "1, 2," then silently to myself, ending with a triumphant "51!" and another count of five when I manage to keep the stitch count straight, or a muttered curse when I do not. Perhaps they'll be relieved to discover that I'm not a permanent fixture.
On the other hand, my tiny travel book of watercolour paintings is coming along splendidly, perhaps because I have no expectations when painting. I'm an amateur and content to be so. Unlike knitting, flaws are an expected part of the process. When watercolours run in a rhythm along the paper, they are known as "Happy Accidents." The same does not apply to my knitting:
I can't be too upset, though. Not with a view like this, of the night sky, as we sit with our ciders outside our camper door: