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The weather has indeed turned out exactly as forecast – snow, sleet, freezing rain, rain, and wind. The wind’s not pussyfooting about, making itself known with gales so bad that most of the ferries are docked and not permitted to sail. The gods are evidently much annoyed, and each is trying to outdo the other. The fireplace is doing a great job, the tea is hot and plentiful, and the banana loaf is down to its last little slice.

Colour! Lots of it has been needed these blustery days, with the wind roaring its way through grey cloud and snow flurries to rattle shutters and nerves. I turned to my magic balls of yarn for the perfect quick fix. Cheerful colours almost begging to become a circular knit cowl. Something so simple and easy, it feels like cheating.

Round and round I knit while the yarn colours changed enticingly, and after two evenings glued to the TV drama, it was finished. I gave my cowl a solid colour lining, did a three-needle bind off with the live stitches of the lining and the cast on stitches of the magic ball bit, and there – done! All the knots are neatly concealed, and the cowl is doubly warm.

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They cannot manage without me

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