Monday, August 31, 2009

Paradise via rail and bus

This is going to be a pic-heavy post, because today I went here:

and inside it was this, the top on my list of things to do while in Singapore:

I am a sucker for orchids and I love taking photos of flowers. These gardens were gorgeous, I was moved near tears by the orchid gardens. I will be braving the humidity to visit again and again, for sure. I will try not to turn this into a blog of flower photos, but here is a tiny tiny portion of what I saw today:

Besides visiting the gardens, I have been getting used to using public transportation as my only means of travel. Over the weekend I went downtown and wandered around a bit, found my way to Ikea, did some grocery shopping. This country truly is clean - the MRT (rail) and public buses are freakishly devoid of litter, grime, and graffiti.

Anyway, let's talk about knitting somewhere in this post. This is another WIP I brought with my from the States. It's pretty gloomy here today, and the yarn is grey so excuse the lame pics.

The pattern is Mary Jane from an issue of Twist Collective (Rav). I worked the size that fits my bust but then did some decreases because women with chests my size (DDD) look like barrels without some shaping in their tops. I wanted to keep it simple so I chose to keep doing stockinette until I finished the decreases, I hope this looks alright in the finished top. This is my first knitted sweater, which comes as a surprise to me considering how much knitting I have done in the past five years, and I am hoping I worked the decreases out in a reasonable way. This thing is taking me forever, but I am enjoying it quite a bit. I especially like the Snakeskin stitch pattern:

even moreso now that it reminds me of a going-away present that I received:
It's almost the same stitch pattern on this pouch, knit by my friend Nadine. She's really new to knitting so I know that this pouch was a huge effort for her, which makes me love it more. What really shocked me though, is what my friends chipped in to get which goes inside:

Yep, that's an amazon Kindle. I had been babbling about how badly I wanted one for months, and I am already in love with the thing. I've used the crap out of it too, with all the flying and waiting I've done in the past week.

I have made great progress on the sweater since I arrived in Singapore. It makes so much sense that I am fired up about finishing a sweater now that I am practically ON the equator. Good grief.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Let's revive this sucker!

Well, the blog died. I just felt that I didn't have anything to offer the knitting blogosphere that wasn't already out there. Besides that, I was busy finishing my PhD, being single for the first time as an honest-to-goodness adult, and getting a job.

The job I got is in Singapore, and I just moved here two days ago. It should be more interesting to track how knitting helps me deal with living in such a different culture. I'm from Cincinnati, Ohio, USA and I've never lived abroad before. So, let's get this show on the road, shall we?

Well, first of all let me introduce my second new friend in Singapore.

This cat is always hanging around my temporary housing building. I talk to him/her out my window from time to time, he/she seems to enjoy the attention. (My first new friend is a coworker who was assigned to help me out the first few days. His help is indispensable and I could kiss whoever put that program in place.)

My new university is huge compared to my old one. It is also beautiful.

It makes me think of Tron in paradise.

I brought several WIPs with me, and I have decided to finish them before I allow myself to unpack the yarn I brought. Besides the fact that I would never finish them otherwise, I think it's important for symbolic reasons.

I have been working on a pair of socks for a dear friend of mine for an age, and I finally finished the first one:

The pattern is from Sensational Knitted Socks - 3x3 Cable with Moss Stitch (Rav). It was worked top-down. The yarn is Silja, a bit scratchy but easy to work with (Rav). The color is not easy to photograph though, it's a manly deep gold in person. I think it looks great with this stitch pattern.

I ran into a few troubles on the toe, which is weird because the toe is my favorite part, but I'll discuss it once I have a second toe, hopefully untroubled, to compare it to.

I've also been working on a sweater, but I'll save that for next time.

I'm off to use the public transportation by myself for the first time. As a suburb girl from the midwest, public transportation makes me slightly uncomfortable even at home. But, when in Rome...