Out of wireless range

A friend of mine is very ill—so ill that I figured out how to take an emergency trip to visit, despite deadlines, financial constraints, and other concerns. It was not an easy trip, but I’m glad I went.

I’d located no less than five wireless and one wired locations that I’d have access to on my travels so I figured I’d get a few blog posts up while in transit. None of them worked. So I have a backlog, with which I won’t catch up very quickly, I’m sure.

The good news is that my travel-knitting project (the one I finally decided upon, after research and testing) is working out terrifically well. This is fortunate, because I have two more trips to take in the next five weeks.

Here’s the lace shawl’s status today:

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It’s one of Evelyn Clark’s designs from FiberTrends, in a laceweight alpaca. I took the photo at my favorite coffee shop, to which I retreat now and again in order to have a few relatively uninterrupted thoughts (it doesn’t have a web site, although it does have free wireless, for which I am grateful). I’ll need to tape my quick-reference chart together again before I head back to the airport.

More on the alpaca in a future post. I knitted something else from the same yarn while in transit to visit my friend. I’ll post a photo after I adjust the image so it doesn’t look murky.

Knitting needles: Do I really need more? I have a gazillion, of course. But I am also insatiably curious and I had to try out the new Addi lace needles, even though they aren’t available locally yet (I asked all the shops within reach before I mail-ordered some). The answer on these . . . yes, I need more needles, as long as they make this much of a difference in my knitting pleasure. The needle I’m using is lightweight, warm in my hands, and has nice tips for the kind of work I frequently do. Very sweet for the alpaca-and-lace project. I only wish the Addi lace needles came in even smaller sizes because I knit loosely.

Yes, I carry a self-addressed, stamped, bubble-wrap envelope in my carry-on in case I’m asked not to bring my needles aboard the flight, and I have a bamboo needle in the same size available to transfer the work if anyone objects to the metal. I haven’t had to use my backup plans yet. I assume this is because I am prepared.

Another thing I have been working on is figuring out what are called in shorthand MP3 players (although I have learned that MP3s are not the only audio files I need to understand and the players are not by any means interchangeable). I thought it would be nice to be able to take music and/or audiobooks with me on all these trips. The plus to audiobooks is that I can knit and listen. I have discovered that portable audio devices that are built for music do not necessarily work well for audiobooks, which require such things as bookmarks (there’s also great player information online at www.oclc.org, but the link would go to a PDF, so I’ll skip it).

I may have this all worked out by the time I’m home to stay for a while and don’t need it so much. I have little patience for learning new software and hardware at this point—I have to deal with too much, too often—but I forced myself to figure out how to load some of my music onto one of the devices. I’m also pretty darn frugal, which makes spending money on anything like this a challenge. Whew. Wears me out. Also does not help me meet deadlines.

So I’d better get back to work. Due to one thing and another, I’m running about eight weeks behind.

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