Finally worked out how to plug a into b by undoing x and substituting p. And huzzzah - we have an internet connection.
On the floor of my little Shetland abode is a tangle of cabling which might possibly have previously belonged to Emerson Lake and Palmer. The fact that all this snaky stuff is located directly below my sleeping platform (1) is a tad alarming. Better not fall down the ladder in the middle of the night, only to become ensnared in cables and crash to the floor again. That would only confirm my status as village idiot even more irrevocably in the eyes of the local population.(2)
Despite being in knitter's knirvana, I'm coming up against blank wall every time I try to find something like a group. My bleatings of -isn't there a 'stitch and bitch' here?- are met with polite puzzlement. My search to find the fabled knitter who divides her time between Shetland and New Zealand produced a disappointment so acute I almost sat down and wept in the wool shop. The knitter in question sails off to Aberdeen tonight and then flies out to NZ next week. I won't meet her after all, and I had rather hoped that she might be able to introduce me to a coven of proper knitters who might pluck my pins out of my trembling hands and say - look, pet, here's how it's done.The lady in the knitting shop who passed on this information referred to there being a 'sooth-moothed' weavers and stitchers thing at a gallery/woolmill in the west of the island. By sooth-moothed, I infer she meant 'soft-southerners with their interfering appropriation of Shetland inter-generational crafts'.
You have to admit, sooth-moothed is a hell of a lot easier to say.
After she said that, I decided it was time to go. Today, in the pouring rain , wind and lowwwwww clouds, I drove to find this woolmill. Got there, only to find it had closed today to take down an exhibition, so there was no contact made there either. The drive had meant to encompass a walk, but it was so disgustingly cold and wet and dreich outside that I couldn't face it. The mill is situated nest to a rare stand of trees ( Shetland is not known for its forests), so that was a lovely find because I've lately realised that I need reference points from the natural world to convince me that we're moving from season to season. Trees are the perfect thing.
In the absence of climate markers, you understand. It rained in the spring, it rained in the summer and now it's autumn, guess what?
1. Sleeping platform. Yeeees. This is, technically, a misnomer. It's a toss and turn and twitch fitfully platform. With scant futon involvement. On a futon-as-biscuit scale running from Carr's Table Water through to Custard Creams, I'd say I was sleeping on a Rich Tea. Need I say more?
2. First hour on the island, I went to the village store to buy milk for the cup of coffee which I was hoping would reorientate me to my true Italian nature. So. I am shy. Stop snorting at the back. I AM shy. At first. I've never been here before. I don't want to stand out, so I'm wearing deepest battered goretex and wellies, just like everyone else. I'm in the shop, making my purchases, thinking - hey, this is cool. Here I am in my foreign destination, and nobody knows who I am. I might even be a local and it's great and...my mobile text alert went off somewhere deep in a pocket ( one of twelve, three of which are so inaccessible, amputation of arms is necessary to access them) in goretex jacket) and in loud tones, everyone was treated to - 'rrrrr, message from the Dark Side there is'.
Oh. My. God.