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February 24th, 2005:

Secret Pal 4! So sorry

Secret Pal 4!

So sorry Secret Pal for not having finished my questionnaire. Here are the rest of my answers along with an updated answer to question 3. Thanks!

3. Do you have any allergies? (smoke, pets, fibers, perfume, etc.) I am allergic to some face creams and body lotions.

8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? I also make jewellery, sew clothes and accessories and make cards.

9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)

I like lots of different kinds of music everything from Depeche Mode to Madonna from Ani di Franco to Dr John to Kylie but I also live with a man who owns several thousand cds (and I’m not exaggerating here).

10. What’s your favorite color? Or–do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? I like jewel colours – royal blue, deep purples (but not lavender), bright magenta and pinks and turquoise. I don’t like pale colours or pastels. I’m not a fan of greys, beige or oatmeal type colours. I do like some shades of red. I’m not a fan of yellow..

11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets? I live with Andy my partner of over 12 years and our four cats.

12. What are your life dreams? (really stretching it here, I know) I try not to think too long term, this is a hangup from my time as a freelance journalist, but the main things that are important to me are Andy and our cats. My goal is for a contented existance.

13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? I love handpainted yarns like Lorna’s Laces, Koigu etc. I also love Lamb’s Pride Worsted – it’s not available in the UK but is a great yarn to knit with. Aside from when I make socks or gloves, I prefer to knit with worsted or dk weight yarns.

14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? I’m not a fan of cotton, I just don’t get on with it. I also don’t like 100 per cent acrylic yarns

15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s? I think all of my knitting is an obsession! I’m slightly obsessed with the idea of knitting a lot of top down cardigans once Klaralund is finished. I have B Walker’s Knitting from the Top book.

16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? I love knitting socks, scarves, gloves and cardigans!

17. What are you knitting right now? Klaralund from Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton’s second Noro book.

18. What do you think about ponchos? I have four or five ponchos and kits to knit two more. But I don’t know if I’ll be making any more. I think I have enough now.

19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Circulars definitely. I particularly like Addi Turbos. I do love the look of Lantern Moon needles though – they’re beautiful!

20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Hmm well I prefer my Addis but I also have a Denise Needle set which I love. Still like bamboos too.

21. Are you a sock knitter? Yes!

22. How did you learn to knit? My mother and grandmother taught me how to cast on and the knit stitch. I didn’t learn to purl until over three years ago.

24. How old is your oldest UFO? About 18 months I think, maybe older.

24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird?
I love cats particularly those by Laurel Burch. Fave cartoon characters include Pucca, Hello Kitty. I also like Emily the Strange, Wonder Woman and CatWoman (but not the movie!).

25. What is your favorite holiday? I like any time that I get a day off!

26. Is there anything that you collect? I have a small Laurel Burch collection of a few mugs, picture frame, wooden cat and a couple of bags. I also collect some tv and comic book action figures. I have many Wonder Woman figures, Captain Picard from Star Trek (I’m a big Patrick Stewart fan!)

Madrid! Well Madrid is a

Madrid!

Well Madrid is a lot colder than I thought it would be. But it is February after all! On Wednesday the tv was full of reports of the city’s “record” amount of snow. It didn’t look like much snow to us but was a big deal to the Spanish.

I had read on the Madrid Knitting Meetup blog that the city was a “yarn desert” and when I visited The Black Cat I was a little disappointed. Although it has a big selection of weights of yarn and a reasonable amount of colours, most of the yarns had acrylic in them. I’m a self confessed yarn snob so acrylic isn’t my cup of tea.

I did buy just under a kilo – for the yarn is sold by weight in The Black Cat – of a tweedy light-worsted weight yarn that’s half wool and half acrylic. That should be enough for two cardis. I bought two shades, one is a purple mix the other a turquoise/teal mix.

I still think that El Gato Negro is worth a visit if you’re ever in Madrid.

One store that was a real surprise though was Inke. I heard about it from Andy as the owners’ are relatives of one of his friends. The shop sells supplies for cross stitch, beading and quilting as well as some yarns. They don’t have a massive yarn selection but it was enough for me! They have some Noro, Katia, Mondial and other brands.

I bought ten balls of Sakura by Mondial in a turquoise variagated shade and two balls of Katia Hippy Mix – a novelty yarn. I got a discount on the Sakura because I purchased ten.

I’m planning on going back to Inke because there’s another yarn that I wished I’d bought.

So what else have we done? Well I’ve drunk a good quantity of hot chocolate! Spanish hot choc is quite thick and made with real chocolate melted into milk. We’ve bought a few bars of drinking chocolate to take home.

In addition to much walking and getting used to the different hours over here – most restaurants don’t open until after 8pm – welve also been to the museum of modern art. Saw Picasso’s Guernica which is still disturbing. You can buy mugs and mousemats with the painting on in the museum’s shop but it’s not something that I would want to drink my morning tea from.

Today, we’re going to have a better look around Plaza Mayor.