Behold the hat that I ripped back to varying positions at least five times. I'm still not entirely thrilled with the brim lining, but it's good enough. I also can't believe that I grafted the entire brim in place, but joining the edge stitches to the inside of the hat with single crochet was just too inelastic and nasty. Knitting on pencils (6 mm needles) was weird too, since most of my knitting is on 3.25 mm needles and smaller.
Over the last two days, I decided to do some spinning. I didn't want to get stuck into a big project, so I grabbed three small bags (maybe an ounce or so) of alpaca that my neighbor had brought back from a North Carolina alpaca farm. One was very dark brown, one was a sandy brown, and one looked like a light brown. I started with the last bag, and I now think it's probably white fiber, given the amount of dirt that stuck to my fingers while spinning it. Since there's not really enough of any one color to use them separately, I think I'll ply all three colors together and use the yarn for a tweedy hat.
My spinning wheel was a tad cranky after sitting idle for a while, so it needed cleaning and oiling first. Even so, the stretchy drive band kept jumping off. That usually means that the non-moving arm of the WooLee Winder has vibrated forward and is knocking the driveband off, but, nope, that wasn't the problem. I had to go to plan B, which is a tip from Woodland Woolworks: put some oil on a tissue and treadle while holding the tissue on the drive band. Problem solved!
Still, I think it may be time to send the wheel back to the mother ship for a tune-up. It has had nearly eight years of high-speed production spinning and would probably appreciate re-alignment and replacement of worn parts.
In other news, last night was the second public meeting on the road reconstruction, which turned out better than I expected. The planned sidewalk on my side of the street will actually be deemed a "walkway". That means that the town will maintain/plow it and assume the liability. So now I need to arrange a meeting with the engineers to have them measure out the different plans and see the effects on my fifty-plus year old ginormous spruces near the road. I really don't want to lose them, because they're the primary buffer of road noise.
The construction will be a nightmare, though. It will start with upgrading and moving water/sewer lines and utility poles next fall, and the road and sidewalk construction will follow in the spring, probably with the road becoming one way for the duration. Since there aren't many cross streets that go anywhere, that will add extra miles to getting home. Ugh.