Juneathon 19/30 – Heads or tails

There was around 9 hours between last night’s run and this morning’s run.  I knew I needed to run in the morning because I had something on after work and not running would be a Juneathon fail. It felt as if the alarm went off about ten minutes after I had fallen asleep and I could barely peel my eyes apart to swipe at the snooze button.

Basically, the morning went something like this:
NOISE!!!
Scrape eyelids open, paw at alarm, snooze.
NOISE!!!
Scrape eyelids open, paw at alarm, snooze.
NOISE!!!
Scrape eyelids open, consider turning alarm off, realise that inevitably I will fall back asleep and wake up too late to run, paw at alarm.
Continue persuading eyelids to stay open, consider matchsticks, consider whether standing on my head would force them open like turning a doll upside down does, realise that I have never been able to stand on my head, discount this idea, focus on standing up.
Find running kit, apply in correct order checking that every item is the right way out and the right way round. Say good morning to Ginge, whinge about Juneathon, lie down on the bed, realise that this a bad idea, close eyes, realise that this is an even worse idea.
Venture downstairs. Put Miles on his bespoke satellite locating stand wheely bin. Find shoes. Ensure shoes match. Apply shoes to appropriate feet. Curse Juneathon. Locate camera. Locate shuffle. Have a quick drink. Leave house, lock door, fasten Miles to wrist. Return to house, unlock door, pick up camera. Leave house, lock door. Unlock door, pick up shuffle. Leave house, lock door.
Spot treasure in car park. Silently praise Fairweather Runner for putting treasure on the list. Run half a mile, loop round, run back. Consider rounding up my mileage. Realise that I am tied to the tyranny of Miles’ demands. Break free of the tyranny of Miles’ demands. Be satisfied with 1.33 untidy Juneathon miles.

I have rarely been so pleased to find 5p

I have to run at 6 again tomorrow. Oh dear.

Juneathon 18/30 – are we nearly there yet?

It wasn’t that I was tempted to tumble off the Athon wagon today. It would be more accurate to say that I was tempted to do a great big high dive with triple somersaults off the Athon wagon. Apparently I’m not allowed to do that though. I could have just done the miserable route back from the supermarket, but there is one piece of treasure that I wanted to tick off before we head down south.

For this reason (and I hope that Fortnight Flo appreciates it) Ginge dropped me off near the milestone and I had to run the two point something miles back home (inevitably this would be rounded up to a nice tidy three…).

Quite fancy for these parts.

Ginge’s eagle eyes came in use again as he had spotted a deceased hedgehog at the side of the road. Thank you, @torsparkles for turning me into someone who takes photos of roadkill

Poor hedgehog.

I also spotted a postie’s red elastic band, which isn’t actually on the list but I took a photo of it for my mum because she says you don’t often see them any more.

Rarely seen round our way – one of the local councillors is waging a war on rubber bands. I am waiting for Mr Clegg to nick the idea to suggest as a government strategy.

I’m not sure which is worse, the fact that I have been photographing roadkill or that I have been photographing discarded rubber bands. In fact, please don’t answer that.

Juneathon 17/30 – Feline groovy

Another Sunday, another day when I prioritise cake over Juneathon…

We’ve now reached a point where the potentially achievable treasure items are all a bit of a distance from the house, which is unfortunately because I know that I will have a hat trick of early runs this week.

Today I decided to chance my arm and have a quick trot down to the lodge to hunt out the elusive waterfowl suggested by Fairweatherrunner. It was in the lap of the gods whether or not the swan family would be obliging and come out for a swim. I can only apologise to any other park users who were alarmed by the sight of an over excited grown woman exclaiming “Yes! Swans!” as she got near the water’s edge…

The swans weren’t being entirely helpful as they were bobbing about on the far side of the water, slowly drifting towards me but at a speed that meant that I didn’t have enough time to wait for them to reach my side and, conversely, if I ran to the other side they would be just as far away as when I started… Anyway I settled for a few long lens baby swan paparazzi shots and looped round the lake to find that although they were nearer from that side, my view was completely obscured by the rhodedenron bushes.

Not one, not two, not even three, but FOUR baby swans

I ran up the big steep hill to get home and as I scuttled into the car park, I spotted another of @torsparkles‘ suggestions – a cat  sunning himself on the pavement. I tried my best to act nonchalant and sneak up on him, but it quickly descended into a bit of a game of cat and mouse (weirdly with me as the cat and him as the mouse though) around a car before I managed to grab a quick picture.

The cat was rubbish at hide and seek

Juneathon 16/30 – how much do you trust me…?

Thanks to a spot of oversleeping last Saturday, today was my only bite at the cherry with one particular piece of Juneathon treasure. This of course was Parkrun tourist Abradypus’s suggestion of a Parkrun t-shirt. I am now spoilt for choice as I sit equidistant from 3 different Parkruns but don’t tend to run any on a regular (or even irregular) basis. In fact, it’s a full 11 months since I ran my very first Parkrun, also at Pennington Flash.

As we gathered round waiting for the pre-run announcements, I peered at my fellow runners in the hope of spotting the elusive garment. I was just toying with the idea of using a Parkrun volunteer t-shirt when my eye was caught by a flash of red. There it was, a Parkrun 50 shirt. Unfortunately I’d decided to run unencumbered so I lacked phone or camera. It was too late to nip back to my car and judging by the athletic form of the gentleman changing into his well earned prize (not that I was staring) he was likely to finish while I was still on my first lap. My only hope was that he would have a brew afterwards and not be freaked out my the red-faced sweaty woman asking for a picture.

Anyway, I ran; the hills didn’t seem as daunting as last year and i was happy with myself, even though I think I was a touch slower this time. I remember that I was feeling as if I was running really well at that time last year, but it was also one of my last runs before my hip and knee turned on me and I ended up having to make friends with a foam roller and a physio.

I didn’t get a photo of the actual treasure, so to compensate here is a picture of assorted waterfowl.

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For those of you with a less than trusting nature, here is some independent verification about today’s treasure find:

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I am now off to the big city for lunch where I I have a strong suspicion that there will be local ales and maybe even a Manchester tart

It must be glove

I have really rubbish circulation in my hands. I’ve had it for years and eventually mentioned it to the doctor on a visit a few months ago. The conversation went something like this.

ME: Um, and I think I might have Raynaud’s phenomenon. Hang on… (fumbles in bag for phone, finds photo of scarily white fingers, shows doctor)
DR: Yes, that definitely looks like it. Do you want to take anything for it?
ME: Not really. I’ll go and knit myself some gloves.
DR: Good idea.

I paraphrase somewhat (mainly so my GP doesn’t get struck off) but that was the gist of it.

I’ve always been somewhat suspicious of fingerless gloves until I tried on a pair of Ginge’s and found that I could still type and do stuff, but without my fingers going numb. With this in mind, I got searching for a pattern. Whilst I can knit on dpns, sometimes I can’t be bothered and I was relieved to find a Sirdar pattern for mittens/gloves/fingerless gloves that is knitted on straight needles. It’s also knitted with 4 ply yarn meaning that I can either put a dent in my stash of sock yarn (I love sock yarn but don’t knit socks) or I have an excuse to knit to buy more sock yarn (did I mention that I love sock yarn but don’t knit socks?).

I bought some gorgeous wool from Knitty City on our trip to New York last May.

The ball on the right became mittens, the ball on the left is a pub knitting work in progress

My plan was to knit something special to remember the holiday and when we got home, I launched myself into a shawl pattern from the book in the photo. I’m not sure what possessed me to knit a shawl and I’m not sure when I would ever wear a shawl, but let’s not worry about that. It was a fairly straightforward pattern repeat and yet I couldn’t get going with it. I’d do a bit, cock it up, start it again, do some more, make a really stupid mistake (like knitting it on completely the wrong size needles for a while), start again… I kept persevering until I had a moment of clarity.

This is as far as I got with the shawl on the nth attempt…

Even though the yarn was lovely and the pattern was lovely, it wasn’t coming together. With knitting, just as in life, sometimes the individual parts are right, but together they just don’t work and no amount of perseverance will force them to do so. What I love about knitting is that you can do this…

Riiiiiiiiiip it right back…

A day or so after I frogged the shawl, I found the glove pattern and thought ‘ah ha!’. Not so long later (it’s a really simple pattern) I had myself a pair of gloves. One is a slightly looser tension because I knitted it straight but on circular needles (to make it more portable), but not so you’d notice. They’re a lovely fit, despite the fact that I have quite big hands (on photos I end up with really long fingers like Nosferatu) and I think they show off the wool much better than the shawl ever would.

Like a woolly Nosferatu

Glovely!

The sweet irony is that when I finished these, I thought it would be a bit unseasonal to blog about them in June (especially as I have some lovely Polaroid sunglasses waiting for a review). However since then, I have worn gloves more than sunnies. In June.

I would like to register a complaint about this.