Thursday, September 08, 2005

11 Bridges in 140 Minutes, Part II: Parallel Realities

But First, This Brief Announcement: Thursday Is Knitting Day

Well, everyday is knitting day, really. It's hard to get through even one without picking up the needles at some point for a few minutes.

What I'm referring to, though, is my new resolve that I'm going to take all the different things I want to be doing more of (and better at), and aside from the casual amount of work I do at them, give them each a day that I focus more hours on them alone.

And so, Thursday is Knitting Day. I had hoped to spend several hours working on my "Wings of the Cat" shawl, but it seems I've been doing so much knitting lately (and some of it in odd circumstances) that my hands actually ache. Especially the base of the left thumb, the joint that was dislocated in the car accident some 5 or 6 years ago now.

So I kept the knitting light, but still made real progress. Sock Experiment 4, Sock 2 (SE4/S2) was close enough to done that I finished that up and grafted up the toes. So here they are.
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Finished Objects!

It's worth noting that I worked the pattern one size larger than last time after re-calculating my gauge, and these seem to fit much better than SE3 did.

I did work on my shawl, too, and actually knit about 6 rows. The pattern in the center panel is building nicely, and the wings should have enough stitches in about 8 more rows for me to begin inserting the lace pattern there. Before I laid the work down for the day, I was spreading it out on the needles and spotted one place in the center panel where there's a stitch error. I'm not going to tink - it's a small error (somehow came up with an extra stitch) that, while noticeable, will be minimal in the whole shawl. I marked it with a clip-on stitch marker, and I'll fix it on the return row by knitting a couple stitches together. Should be fine.

And Now, Our Top Story

You may recall that our heroes, Folkcat and Gryphon, are on an epic journey to see how many bridges they can photograph Folkcat knitting on, all in one day.

When last we left our Extreme Knitting Team, they had knocked off Bridges #1 and #2 of their odyssey within sight of their own home.

"We know there's a whole bunch of bridges we can do easily in Milford," I said, "but I'll bet we can find a few West of here. Let's head out on Rte. 101 and see."

So we piled into the car, and drove up the hill to visit the western part of Wilton along State Route 101. Watching both sides of the road as we went, Gryphon spotted an old bridge on the left side of the road. "Let's go a little further, and then come back," he said. "We may find more, and the turns will be easier."

We continued until a little past where Rte. 31 diverged South to Greenville without seeing any more bridges. Turning back, we turned on a small side road near the abandoned bridge, and parked.

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Folkcat Scopes Out the Setting
And we mean abandoned. This is even older than the Savage Road Bridge that my first Extreme Knitting escapade took us to. Gryphon called this the Old Intervale Road Bridge. According to a plaque on one end, it was built in 1916, which means it would have been for a mix of automobile and horse-and-buggy traffic. Now, if it was ever paved, it's lost under thick grassy growth and weeds, with only the barest hint of tire ruts.

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As Seen From Below, East Side
Our first camera angle here put Gryphon down on the riverbank below. Plenty close to get a good look at me knitting.

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River Shot, West Side
The river bank was clear enough that Gryphon could walk under the bridge and get an angle where the sun wasn't behind me, too. And while we took this shot, I looked across the way from the bridge and realized...I was looking at a guardrail along the side of Route 101, and we could get a shot straight across that would show the Souhegan River below me nicely.

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As Seen From Rte. 101
And then it dawned on me - duh! Where Gryphon was standing along Route 101, parallel to the Old Intervale Road Bridge, was another bridge! The shoulder was wide, and there was a guardrail, so....

Well, then, we just had to swap positions. After all, we'd found another twofer location!

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Playing Near Traffic - Don't Try This At Home
I'll bet most people who drive by on 101 here have no clue about the Old Intervale Road Bridge. Once upon a time, it served the purpose that this new bridge on 101 has taken over. Now, they drive by, oblivious to the fact that symbols of two different eras in transportation history live parallel lives here - one in retirement, one in constant use.

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Big Bridge
Heck, I'll bet most people who drive by here don't even realize they're on a bridge themselves. You have to look down through trees as you're traveling 45 MPH to notice the slip of a river here.

So, we now had Bridges #'s 3 & 4 under our belts. We'd gone as far west as we were willing to for this trip, and we couldn't think of any other safe and easy bridges within Wilton. So, off to Milford!

Check in tomorrow to see the next installment!