Saturday, January 10, 2009

Catching Up (Again)

Well, it's a good thing I didn't resolve to blog more regularly!

(If you don't care about my non-knitting life, feel free to scroll past the next three paragraphs.)

It's been a busy week. We had a new librarian start on Monday, which of course disrupts the usual pattern, and another librarian left last week. I suddenly find myself acting as my library's Nursing librarian, and preparing to teach quite a bit later this month. Of course, at my old job, I taught all the time, and worked with Nursing students and faculty a lot, but I've been spoiled over the last year and a half -- I guess you could say I've had people who did this sort of thing for me! Plus, of course, they expected us to work 5 whole days this week! (This was only the second week since before Thanksgiving that I worked all 5 days.)

The highlight of the week for me was the fact that the library finally has almost-hot water. When I began here in May 2007, I was surprised to discover that the staff kitchenette had no hot water (at lunch time, we keep a tea kettle on, to supply hot water for washing dishes) and the ladies' room had only slightly-warm water. Rumor has it that the mens' room had no hot water. The public restroom also had only slightly-warm water. I was told that the building (built in 1974) had been plumbed wrong and had never had hot water. An investigation sometime in the 1990s had determined there was no way of fixing the problem. And apparently no one at the library protested that statement.

There are a few of you reading who can probably guess how this affected me. I was incensed! It's not like hot running water is some sort of new-fangled idea -- it's been found in even the most rural areas of the U.S. for the last 60 years and I would bet that most of the buildings on campus have had it for the last 100 years. I insisted that the situation be checked out again. Eventually, last week -- months after I started complaining -- real plumbers, as opposed to general handymen, appeared. They were as shocked as I that the building had never had hot water. They also agreed that the building was plumbed wrong, but that they could at least improve the situation.

So -- hurray! -- as of Thursday, the ladies' room has water hot enough that I considered adding some cold water to the mix. The kitchenette's water isn't quite as hot as the ladies' room, but is much improved. I don't think the plumbers are finished either. And you cannot imagine how happy warm water has made me!

Enough about work -- there has been knitting, too. In fact, I've knit a little on several projects.

  • I worked a few rows on Daedelus (which doesn't sound like much, but at this stage, the rows are SO long that the beaded rows take me about an hour each), but it's now on hold while I wait for a revised pattern from Helen.
  • I've worked a little on the Stonewall stole (this is an old photo -- imagine about twice this much done). I'm making the middle size, with some gorgeous merino/tencel sock yarn from Jessie at A Piece of Vermont. I just loved this squooshy yarn in not-quite-solid not-really-red/not-really-pink, and I think it's perfect for the pattern.

  • I've done a couple rows on my Hedera socks.
  • I decided that one skein of Malabrigo Sock Yarn wasn't enough for my Woodand Scarf (which I don't think I've blogged about), so I ordered another skein from SuperCrafty -- luckily, Allison still had one skein of the dye lot. The colorway is called Stonechat, and it's just gorgeous.
Malabrigo Sock "Stonechat"

  • And finally, a couple days ago, as I felt the wind whipping through my hand-knit mittens, I remembered that at the end of last winter, I had started a pair of Bird in Hand stranded mittens, which would be much warmer. I pulled them out and saw that I was just about at the start of the thumb on the first mitten. I've been working on them the last couple nights and I think I'll finish the first one tonight. Here it is so far:

Bird in Hand in progress
It's really hard to take a picture of your own right hand!

The only problem is that the change in my tension is really obvious on the palm. I hope that a good soak will help even the stitches out, but I may end up frogging this one and reknitting it.

Bird in Hand palm

So -- I think I'm all caught up now! Maybe you'll hear from me again before next weekend!


Anonymous said...

I can't believe the library had no hot water. That is INSANE. I would've reacted just like you did, because seriously. That's just ridiculous!

Congratulations! You're the Norma Rae of the Hardin Library! This is your legacy, and really, they should post little metal signs over every hot water spigot in the building: "In honor of Janna, a woman who had the courage to risk everything for what she believes is right."

Chris said...

You've been busy! Wow. Yay for hot water. I can't imagine working someplace without hot water. I depend on that for warming up my cold hands some days. :) And I hear - this working 5 days in a row stuff is for the birds.

Melissa DeSantis said...

I had a new librarian start this week too - although not until Thursday. And working all 5 days this past week was not fun. :(

Bezzie said...

Beautiful mitten!! And I love the Stonechat :-)

The nohotwaterlibrary sounds like all the daycare centers Chunky's ever been at. They turn off the hot water so the kids can't ever burn themselves washing their hands.

Anonymous said...

My library has never had hot water anywhere. When I use the restroom in the nursing building, I turn the hot water tap on to feel it! Sometimes I microwave water to wash a dish in the tech services sink. I worked Thursday, then had Fri off, now I have the weekend. Oh well, love the pink-y yarn.

Anonymous said...

I hate to say it, but that looks more like you switched which hand you hold which yarn in than like your tension is wonky... though oddly it doesn't show on the front...

Did you get the charts?

Steven said...

That Stonechat Malabrigo looks yummy. Nice dark colors!

Weird about the hot water. You'd think a health science library would have hot running water! This same thing was going on at our main ACC offices when I first started working here. I think they were just stingy. When they started offering health science CE courses there, the hot water magically appeared!