The life of a designer is not without its frustrations. You know how every once in a while you’re trundling cheerfully along with a pattern and suddenly the
incubus muse comes whomping down on your head and insists that you have to go off in a totally different direction? No? Let me tell you, it is not for the faint of stomach. You can argue until you’re blue in the face that it’s too late, that the thing is nearly done, that you’re already getting feedback from the test knitter… but the muse is an imperious and intransigent creature, and woe betide you if you try to disregard its promptings. They may or may not turn out to be right, but you have no choice about exploring them.
(The ludicrous aspect of applying this level of artistic intensity to socks, of all things, is not lost on me. But what can you do? I didn’t choose the medium any more than I chose the vocation. Some are born crazy, some achieve insanity, and some have madness thrust upon them. TSOCK doth sway my life.)
I’ve been ridden by one of these maddening whiplash experiences for several days now, and yesterday I woke up to find it had been haunting my dreams as well as my waking hours. So obviously there was only ONE thing to do.
I took the day off.
I had planned to take some time out anyway, because St. Patrick’s Day is Pea-Planting Day in these parts, as eny fule kno. If I hadn’t owed the muse a good kick in the butt I might not have made a whole day of it… as it is, I did and I’m not sorry.
First, a satisfactory tour of inspection. Preliminary spring denizens present and accounted for:
Better yet, last week’s planting…
… is already producing results:
(This incredibly crappy picture brought to you by my excitement over the first two radishes-in-progress.)
Now for some wholesome labor; digging and turning soil, clearing weeds, and finally some planting. This is where the peas go:
(That’s before. I’d show you after, but just how many pictures of plastic knives sticking out of mounds of dirt do you really want to see on a putative knitting blog? Yeah, that’s what I thought. Take my word for it, OK? - the peas are planted.)
Next week there will be seedlings to start indoors, so I gave myself the pleasure of screening a bucketful of finished compost to add to the starter mix. Until I started it up again last year, the pile had been neglected for several years, so this is from the 2002/2003 season.
Ahhhhh…. black gold. An excellent year.
That and some pruning done, and all the tools put away, it was time for another ritual tour of inspection. Beach walk; first of the season, and about time, too.
A mild winter; not much beach erosion at all.
You want some flotsam? I gotsam.
You want some jetsam? I can getsam.
I’m not the only one conducting an inspection; there’s a whole world of smells to investigate.
Mostly, though, it’s just about meandering and breathing it all in - recharging the batteries with a much-needed dose of sea air.
Me and my shadow, and my shadow’s shadow…
Shaggy dog is shaggy…
Pensive dog is pensive…
I should not be able to do this at this time of year…
We have left our mark here, I see, but someone else was here before us…
Time to retrace our steps…
Today, back to the salt mines.
Take THAT, tsock muse!