Monthly Archives: September 2010

Random Friday nr1

1)
I’m supervising/mentoring/instructing(pick one as I don’t know the correct word for it) two university girls in their writing of a project to get a Master’s degree. They are quite fun to meet up with and they are both sooo ambitious. I’m sure their project will turn out to be a great time investment for my company.

Yesterday, the girls sent me their first 2½ pages of the introduction chapter. And I returned it earlier this morning. With 22 comments on it. I felt awful sending it back and included a very apologetic email asking them not to be discouraged by the number of comments. Some comments were overall tips on how to make some passages more defined and more readable as they includedvery technical words, but most comments were grammar corrections or suggestions on how to replace obvious “we’ve-translated-directly-from-English-without-considering-if-it-makes-sense-in-Swedish”-mistakes.

I’m such a pain in the a$$ when it comes to proof reading and giving feedback. I hope I didn’t scare them…

2)
I had a colleague coming into my room this morning to tell me about a guy she has met and will have a date with tonight. I can’t help but laugh when she tells me about these things. It’s “I texted him when I came home” and “he wrote he liked me” and “I wrote I wanted to see him” and “he wrote he was going to London over the weekend” and “I wrote and told him we could see each other tonight” and… After a while I can’t help myself but ask her if she remembers his voice. And it makes her giggle every time.

I feel so out of the dating loop as I’ve never experienced “Text Message Flirting”. Apparently that’s how dating and getting to know each other starts nowadays.  Says the 30-and-some-years-old and have flashbacks to comments from an older generation about the kids of today…

3)
This weekend, my boyfriend and I are planning on a couple of hours in the forrest. Just walking around with our cameras in hand and backpacks filled with sandwiches and hot drinks on our backs. I was so excited about this when emailing my sister a couple of days ago.

And she told me about her plans for the weekend. She’s catching the bus to go to one of the coolest cities in the world to see a super famous building, order coffee and walk in the harbour.

Worlds apart…

4) I’m listening to Barenaked Ladies and enjoying the fact that it’s actually Friday!

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FO – Vesper

Vesper
Vesper from the side

Pattern: Vesper by Heidi Kirrmaier (PiPiBird)

Yarn: Allino by BC Garn (A linnen-cotton blend) in Pink (nr 14) and Green (nr 20)

Modifications and thoughts: This top is knit from the neck down. You basically knit a very wide tube past your armpits and then put the sleeves on hold to continue knitting a tube. After finishing off the sleeves you sew around the neckline to make the pleats. I decided to go with the suggestion made by Roko on Ravelry to cast on provisionally and knit the pleats instead of sewing them. I liked the neater look.

Vesper - back
The back of the neckline. (I have one stitch between my pleats as I compensated a slightly different gauge to the pattern.)

I also skipped the pocket on the front. With all the stripes going on I figured I didn’t need anything more to make the top visually interesting. And to me the pocket adds more to the look than the functionality of the top.

I wanted this to be a floaty top that didn’t cling to my hips, so I added increases to the part below my armpits. To be honest, I think I added too many as there’s a loooot of positive ease going on in the waist and hip area. This is mostly seen at the back, I think, where a lot of the fabric gathers. Had I planned my increases a bit better, I’m sure I could’ve avoided this. It’s not a big deal though, I’m planning on using the top casually.

And I absolutely love how heathered the yarn looks when knit up. I love the fabric it produces!

Vesper sleeve
The left sleeve

Political language

There’s a national election coming up in Sweden this weekend. Sweden is a monarchy so we don’t do presidents. We vote for parties to form our government and one person (usually the leader of the biggest party in the government) becomes our Prime Minister.  

This year our Liberal party (called Folkpartiet) has put up ads on billboards I pass on my way to and from work. There are five of them in a row and one of them make me laugh. It has our Minister of Integration and Gender Equality on it and it says:

Svenska språket.
En nyckel till integration.

My translation of that would be:

The Swedish language.
A key to integration.

Am I the only one finding the poor use of the Swedish language funny? What about those punctuations? These phrases are not sentences…

Audiobooks vs “real books”

In the last 6 weeks, I have listened to 6 audiobooks through my iPod. I’ve listened to them while walking, sitting down with a knitting project in hand, baking a cake, tidying up around the house, vacuuming, scrubbing the shower with a toothbrush, having lunch out on the porch, sitting on a bus, biking and lying in bed.

I wouldn’t have been able to read proper books at the same time as doing all of the above. And I think that’s the major plus for me when it comes to audiobooks vs “real books”. I actually go through books whithout having to make them a priority over some of those tasks that really need to be done.

As long as I can remember, I’ve been one of those people who check the ending of books before getting there. Holding a book in hand, I always get the urge to check the last sentence after having read only a couple of chapters. Sometimes it totally destroys the book as that last sentence reveals too much, but I can’t help myself. With audiobooks though… It takes so much more of an effort to get to the last sentence that I have enough time to tell myself to quit it. To not bother. And I have to say that stories often get better if I can still be intrigued by the end.

Yesterday I finished the latest book I’ve listened to (Darkness, Take My Hand by Dennis Lehane) and I realized I reacted so much more to suspense when I heard it rather than read it. The suspension at the end of the book got to me more than it would’ve if I’d read it. I couldn’t fast forward the voice the same way I push through text when using my eyes. Every syllable was there.

My boyfriend asked me yesterday, as I was loading my next audiobook into the computer, if I had given up on reading paper books altogether. No, I haven’t. But I have to say that I like the freedom that audiobooks give me.

I do wonder though, if my iPod will destroy some of the magic around books and reading…

China (part 6) – Random pictures from Shanghai

I apologize for forgetting about the 6th (and last) part of pictures from my time spent in China in June…

Traffic
Ordinary traffic in Shanghai on an ordinary afternoon

Intersection
This is what the walkways look like over some of the bigger intersections in Shanghai. It’s a clever, and sort of beautiful, way of keeping the pedestrians separate from the cars, buses, mopeds, motorcycles and bikes. I love how cool that man on the moped looks even as traffic is coming at him. On some occasions I saw old people walking straight through the traffic without bothering with the stairs up and down the walkway. (They all came through without scratches, but I’d never dare give it a shot!)

Grand Hyatt Hotel
This is Grand Hyatt Hotel, a building that looks like a bottle opener at top (but you can’t see it in this picture). The bar/restaurant was the highest in the world a couple of years ago, but I think it’s been knocked down a spot or two. I went to the bar on a Saturday night and had the most expensive Ceaser’s salad I’ve ever had. It was delicious though.

From the Bund
Shanghai is full of sky scrapes and buildings with exciting design. This flower-like building was a great landmark for us as we lived fairly close to it. The picture is taken from the Bund down by the Huangpu River and it was crowded with tourists walking around. And some of them took pictures as well. 🙂

Different generations
I imagine this is a grandmother walking her grandson home after badminton practice.

Magnolia
In People’s Square I found the largest and “fleshiest” magnolias I’ve ever seen. The trees were massive and they were all in bloom.

Bubblebum flip-flops
These flip-flops were worn by a girl standing behind us in the line up to go through security at Shanghai Pudong International Airport. They were worn by an Asian girl in her late teens and the rest of of her matched them perfectly! She nearly made a happy dance with joy when I asked if it was okey for me to take a picture of her feet and shoes.

So, this was the last post in my series of pictures from China. I hope you’ve enjoyed them!

Help! Cat pee on my Sylvi!

Back of Sylvi - 2

In October last year I finished my Sylvi by Mari Muinonen. Most of the knitting zoomed by, but sewing those petals down and assemble the parts together to start the hood, broke me to tears. More than once. I fought trying to get the petals to lie down neatly and I had knitted more rows on some of the parts up by the neck…

But I was determined to finish the project. I was determined to be able to wear Sylvi. And I did. Sylvi was worn quite a lot last winter.

A couple of weeks ago I realized that one of my cats has peed on my Sylvi. Yep, he’s peed on my Sylvi. On one of the sleeves. I can’t really see the stain, but I can smell it. And so would everyone else if I was to wear her in the state she’s in now.

So, what am I supposed to do? Sylvi is knit with 100% pure wool which means I can’t throw Sylvi in the washer (unless I’d like her to transform into a thick coat suitable for a baby) and I don’t want to ruin her in any way.

I asked some women in my knitting group yesterday and they suggested trying bile soap or vinegar/acetum on it. Anyone else approve of those suggestions? Or have others?

Help appreciated!