Thursday, November 29, 2007

Of Quakes and Tremors!

So something very strange happened to me today. I was sitting at my desk working when I felt a gentle shaking of my chair. Now, if you can imagine it, it was like if someone snuck up behind me, all invisible-like, and started to shake the chair from the left to the right and back again. I kinda tensed up, furrowed my brow and convinced myself that I was imagining things. But the shaking got persistent and I then convinced myself that something supernatural was happening to me (ok. stop it now - quit that snickering!!!). But then the entire workstation began to move and my monitor began to dance. Oh crap, I thought, something is wrong with me! The room is shaking! Then the business manager in the other office yelled... is anyone else's desk moving? It didn't take me long people. I yanked the power cord from my new laptop, grabbed my bag and bolted for the door. I'm not sure how I got through it, whether I opened it or walked through it but I got through it. When we got to the door, the people across the hall were making a mad scramble down the shaking stairs. Fear gripped my heart as memories of the collapsed building catastrophe from late August sprang to mind. You see, back in August, half a building collapsed into an unstable cave in Britons Hill killing a family of five (a mother, father and their three children) and since there are caves all over the island that some buildings are constructed on, my fear was that this building was going to collapse!

Well, we made it outside and realised that there were other people outside at the adjoining clinic. Someone passed and asked if we felt that too. It was then I realised that it wasn't a case of an about to collapse building, but rather tremors from an earthquake. An EARTHQUAKE!!! Gosh, apparently the last time anyone felt a rockin' in Barbados like that was back in 1947. I finally got the courage to go back up the stairs for the rest of my stuff that I left in my haste to get out. I collected my past papers, my car keys and my shoes. I shut down the computer and got the heck out of dodge. Another thing that was equally scary was that the phone system was down across the island. I could not get through to my mother to find out if she and the kids were ok (no school today - THANK GOD!!)The system was jammed with people trying to do exactly what I was trying to do. I think that this is something the authorities need to look at. Well, I made my way to my mother's house, sucessfully beating the traffic jams that expectedly followed. When I got there, my daughter was sleeping - the little darling slept through it all. My son and my mother told me about how the chairs, fans, the tv, the ceiling light and every other thing in the place was shaking. My mother apparently grabbed my daughter and with my son in tow they had bolted outside to safety. Everyone was shook up! In the end, there was building damage and one person was trampled in town and had to get medical attention.

Unfortunately, the people of Martinique who bore the brunt of the quake were not so lucky. Lots of building damamge and one little girl was killed when a wall fell on her. Her seven year old sister is listed in critical condition.

My fear right now is that Barbados won't be prepared for a disaster. If today's tremors could shut down the island and cause the telephone system to go belly up, what would happen heaven forbid in a major disaster was to happen? Well right now, I still feel a little off kilter - like I'm dizzy or something but well past the initial shock. This is something that will be on the lips of Barbadians for a long time coming!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Swallowtail pics et al

Hi all... taking a few minutes to post a pic of the ST. I have one pic that I think is halfway decent but that's of the shawl unblocked. I should prolly retake the pic of it blocked so it will look better but really... I doubt anyone cares. I can't envision myself taking pics like b r o o k l y n t w e e d so there's really no point (can you tell I'm in one of those moods? It might have something to do with the fact that I've recently had a big fight with someone that should have known better, broke my favourite mug, got stopped by the po-po for not paying my road tax and had to pay for a new licence for hubby - all on ONE DAY mind you - not to mention I had a b*tch of a headache last night - so I'm a little sour/ dour/ pissed etc etc). Anyways, ST is finished and that's the most important thing knitwise right now. See pics above.

Also attached is a pic of the source of my headache last night. That thing on the plate my friends is a conkie. Conkies are "highly nutritious steamed pudding-like cornmeal treat that exist throughout Africa, the Caribbean, South America and Pacific countries where most of the ingredients are grown in abundance and constitute a large part of everyday cooking and nutrition." Conkies are a national treat traditionally made in November around our Independence Day - November 30 btw. They are made of gratered pumkin, coconut, sweet potato, egg, milk, raisins, shortening, margarine, injun corn, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon and some cornmeal and its DARN delicious (did I just say darn? Yes, I did... kinda maxed out the naughty words I could say this weekend). The mixture is placed on a 8x8 square of banana leaf (that was previously cleaned and swinged on the fire). They are then stacked in a pot on top of the criss crossed ribs of the banana leaf and a little water and steamed for an hour. And then... voila! A little piece of Bajan heaven! Took long to do cause I had to go searching for the leaves (hubby but you get the idea) and prepare the ingredients BUT I got loads of help from my mother-in-law who's really REALLY good at these kinds of things.

Anyways, I'm going to wash the day away, then grab that same conkie up there with a cup of coffee, my module 7 and Heroes and settle in for some eating, drinking, revision and some time travel. Later!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Zee Swallowtail - she is done!

Drive by post...

Swallowtail is DONE!!! Less than a month! Wow, this is a first for me. This is just further proof that this is an easy knit... that and it is a smaller shawl especially in comparison to the DFS which reaches past my bum. I am looking forward to blocking this - I'm so eager to see it in its proper form!

Pics to follow...

Friday, November 16, 2007

Thar she grows!

*waves hi to everyone*

I hope this post finds everyone well... the weekend is here so please enjoy it whatever you do!

I have a progress pic of the Swallowtail to share. I am halfway through the Lily of the Valley Border 2 chart and the nupps are really slowing me down. I know others have posted alternatives to making the nupps, but I may be a purist when it comes to patterns... that or I'm afraid of messing it up by doing something different! Either way, Swallowtail (ST) and I are like best buds, everywhere I go she goes, to work, to the store... everywhere. You see, she's helping me keep my wits about me as the exam I am studying for (well, certain topics within it ex linear programming a.k.a. evil evil subject) is making me question my intelligence. So whenever the feeling comes over me to run naked screaming Maximize profits! Binding Constraints! Sensitivy Analysis! GAHHHHH!!! I whip her out and knit furiously (well as furiously as those interferring nupps let me!).

Well what about the DSL you say? Well, its there somewhere catching dust. I think it will be refreshing to pick it back up and finish it before the year is over. There are a few other projects that I will be starting soon. They are in no particular order, Little Lacy Top - I have the perfect yarn for this... the allhemp3 that was previously dedicated to the Laura Tee. That's right, I am going to frog her. Or rather ignore her and just use the other skeins to start the Little Lacy Top. Then there's the Trapeze Jacket and hopefully these mittens by Eunny Jang. Why in the world would I want mittens when I live in the tropics - a place some akin to a fiery furnace? Well, I might be travelling again to Canada in April and I will NOT be tricked again by those cruel cold bone chilling winds again! AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Ahem... the last time I went I brought a storm. With the wind chill it was -30. All this extra layering of fat did NOTHING for me. I was shaking like a leaf. And no offense to North Americans, but I will not believe nary a one of you if you say that the weather is nice in April! Nice to you = hypothermia for me. But I digress LOL - if I go I will be prepared. The only question that remains, is will I be able to knit those mittens? I haven't ever done colourwork (well to that extent). Can KnittyKitty do it?

Stay tuned.

Sunday, November 04, 2007


My hubby is a darling! He dug through the mountain of boxes and found the camera for me and let me know that I didn't need the software to get it running. So I plugged it in (it still had in batteries and all!) and voila! Pics. I know I promised more than these but these are all I can manage for now. Here's the 12 skeins of Rowan Calmer in sour. I know! LOVELY! Next is the progress on my Swallowtail Shawl. I am at repeat 10 of 14 of the Budding Lace 2 chart. I'm using the malabrigo lace in Pink Frost - also from my pal. I'm really enjoying this pattern so far! I would say that it would be good for a first time shawl maker. Very enjoyable so far!

In other non-kniting news, I'm winding down on my assignments. Actually submitted one today. Two more to go then I can study for my exam! My son's birthday is coming up soon so I have to do a little something for him. We plan to do some work on the house as well and get my bike up and running (it's still in the box) so I can get some exercise.

Anyways, I wish everyone a great week knitting and otherwise!