Knitting in the Winter: Burberry-Inspired Cowl

This past summer I used beets to dye some superwash merino from the stash, and the resulting yarn then sat around for 6 months or so until a couple of days ago, when I finally did something with it: IMG_2444

Pattern:  Burberry Inspired Cowl, by Julianne Smith.

Yarn:  Unknown brand superwash merino in cream, beet-dyed.  Unfortunately, the ball of yarn sat on my desk in a room with southern exposure.  The shades were down most of the time, but it is nevertheless a very bright room . . . .  and the dye faded unevenly in the outermost parts of the ball.  I don’t mind too much, mainly because the beet dye was an experiment, knitting a cowl was also an experiment, and I was never that crazy about the feel of the superwash yarn anyway.  

Modifications:  I didn’t want such a wide cowl, so reduced the number of stitches to 46, with the cables reduced to 6 x 6 rather than 8 x 8.  I also did 5 repeats for a looser fit.

Thoughts:  Kitchener stitch is a royal pain; not hard, but just tedious.  The pattern itself is simple but effective, and a very quick knit.  The yarn I used, however, was perhaps too “stiff” for the concept.  I imagine cashmere or alpaca would give it just the right luxurious drape.

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The Broadmoor

During residency, my program director required all internal medicine house officers to join ACP (American College of Physicians) as associate members.  I dutifully joined, and even continued as a regular member when I finished residency.  The Colorado chapter meeting is always in February, and always at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs; doctors have lots of disposable income, right?  I went to my first meeting 14 years ago, and returned for only the third time this year.  In the intervening years the resort has renovated, remodeled, demolished, and expanded, and the work continues.  If a grand hotel could be said to be affordable, the Broadmoor was affordable 14 years ago, albeit only during the off-season.  But now?  I miss the free self-parking, I hate the resort fee for things that should be complimentary (use of fitness center, pools, in-room “complimentary” coffee/tea), and for all that, staff tipping is still not included as part of this daily per person fee.  I remember turning in the comments card after my second visit, and was shocked when the general manager actually wrote back to address my comments.  He told me that the pay parking as well as the resort fee were in keeping with other hotels of the same caliber . . . .  perhaps, but I hate feeling like I’m being nickel and dimed to death.

On the other hand, there is something to be said for holding a conference at the Broadmoor:Broadmoor breakfastLovely bowl of fresh strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries from the breakfast buffet!  As many bowls as I wanted!!  With real whipped cream!!!

Oh, and the conference was pretty good too.  I like being a retired physician — I have no pressure on me to actually learn anything, so can just sit back and enjoy the sessions and let something new just gently seep into my brain.  Unlike other medical conferences that emphasize the latest research results, this meeting invites speakers who can translate what those latest research actually mean for real-life practices.

Perhaps next year I will splurge and stay at the Broadmoor again:  If you’ve been here, you know.