Shop hop day 3 and linkmania

G'day all!

Shop Hop, Day Three

The day dawned grey and icky looking. No rain - it shouldn't rain here for another while yet, or so I am told. It's been six months since it rained properly. Anyway, my ride showed up and we went to do a tour of the southern yarn shops. Can I just say after two days of shop hopping, the spirit and the body were definitely flagging?


The Continental Stitch in not Gilroy, umm, Morgan Hill was an interesting place. They have definitely set themselves up as a boutique shop. They had some cute stuff there - a mix of high end and Berocco synthetic yarns. I once again managed to get away without doing any damage to the visa card....


Then we whizzed down to Carmel by the Sea. I wish I had taken more pics of the place. It was full of cars all over the quaint little streets, galleries, exclusive shops, the sort of place I think my other aunt in law would love. There were people *everywhere*. The yarn shop there, Knitting by the Sea, was cute but did not have a wide range at this stage, though she did have quite a number of large, full-looking cardboard boxes in the shop. I loved the shop - double dutch doors and skylights and wood lining and all white and light and bright.


We stopped for lunch here at Carmel (that is Car Mel, not carm-el, and should be Car- Mill cos gosh there are a lot of cars milling around trying to find parking) and went down to the beach and SCORED! We got a parking spot that was about as close as you can get - only a couple of cars were closer. I would show the wonderful video I shot of a ground squirrel and our little companion dog getting up close and personal but the blasted camera was not ready for video when I pressed the go button... alas. But the clouds had cleared and it was lovely and sunny and the Pacific was BLUE! It is the first time I had seen the ocean blue down there - every time we've been to Monterey, it has been gloomy (once it even rained! But it was only Jan or Feb). Blue blue blue sky and sea. Lovely!


Monarch Knits in Monterey was the closest I've seen to an Australian style yarn shop, the traditional style shop that I've lurked in for years. It had a gobsmacking range (which is only found in older Oz shops that survived the Great Yarn Shop Bust of the 90s). High end, low end, mid-range, you name it, they have it. If I want Jamison Shetland, I should head straight there cos I think they have all the colours. They also have a nice little range of spinning stuff, including some wheels. I would be quite happy if this were my LYS. One weird thing - they started off with two fingerless mitts to display as their one skein project, but by the time we got there, they only had one. Why would you want one mitt? Also, they had two dogs in the shop (dogs in non-food shops are quite common here but is unheard of in Australia). So a chap was patting a shop dog and our companion dog sorta in the way of a main walkway. He stood up, having had enough doggy love, and a lady stepped around the dogs with this Look on her face, a Look that quite clearly was disapproving of dogs in shops.


Away away, up to Capitola to The Yarn Place (not the same as the one in San Jose). This place is in a converted cottage and the ladies there were very nice. They had different yarns to those we saw in most of the other shops - there are always some Cascade and Brown Sheep yarns in most US yarn shops (not all though!) - but danged if I can remember what most of it was! They even had some Aussie spun yarn like Cleckheaton Country 8 ply. That is our good, basic DK weight yarn (but not our nicer yarn, Totem, that is a little more expensive but lovely to work with).

As we were about to arrive at our next destination, the Golden Fleece, we detected a very worrisome event happening under the bonnet (hood). Umm, cars aren't meant to have bluish looking steam coming out from there, are they?

So we completed our left hand turn (against the red arrow but this was important! Car with bad stuff coming out from under the bonnet!) and stopped in a no standing zone. I grabbed my stuff and unhooked the dog and dragged her out in her harness (she only weighs 7 lb). Mr Car had blown a foofer valve, or more correctly in this case, one of the radiator hoses had blown in a very conveniently getatable place. My most resourceful companions let it cool and went to get some duct tape, degreaser and paper towel. I sat with the car and the car keys in case some policeman came along and was very insistent about moving it or alternately someone tried to nick it. I was a little worried that they would ask who it belonged to and I'd say my friend's husband (and what is his name. Umm, I think it is T N but really, I'm not so sure cos he is usually "my husband" and I met him once but never really got to talk to him). They begged the facilities key for some water for the car. Eventually the radiator hose was taped up and water refilled (yes coolant would be better but any port in a storm and we were not sure if the fix would work).

Did we check out Golden Fleece? Yes! They had some Kauni yarn. Even if I washed it, I think it would still be too itchy for me. They have just moved and also downgraded in size, or so I was told. I admit to not remembering a lot about them. I don't know what the one skein pattern was either - I was rather distracted. Also, see the pictures? No? Nor do I. I was still distracted.

Well Mr Car was not a Happy Camper for the trip back. We had to cross the coastal range, only 600m of altitude at best, but that is a lot of up when you go from sea level and you have a sick car. We gave up on getting to the last two shops - it was getting late and we were still having overheating problems. We ended up having to pull over part way up the mountains to let the car cool down. A highway patrolman on a motor bike found us just at the point where we could open the radiator cap, and he kindly helped out with that - we thought there might be an airlock or vapour lock of some kind that hadn't let the water from the reserve get into the radiator. We at least managed to get off the highway on the next offramp down into a town to a service station. There we refilled everything that takes water. We refilled again at the top of the mountains just in case. No overheating, no problems coming down the other side. Hope the car is ok - bit embarrassing for all parties. LOL

The sun had set when we finally reached our homely destination/

So dangit, we missed out on the last two shops but jeez louise, we did pretty darned well. Admittedly I did not do one bit of it by public transport but at least we car-shared. And I did find out a lot about PT around the greater Bay area, and about the yarn shops! Many many thanks to B for putting up with me and organising it all!

Now it is time for LINKMANIA!

The anatomy of a modern car crash.

Two stories about changing your brain - it seems that our thoughts shape our brains, literally.

Forget the aluminium in Alzheimer's - it seems that copper and zinc are the key to the build up of beta-amyloid in the brain.

Hmm, not many links that time, eh? Ah well.



  1. Sounds like an excellent day despite the car trouble.


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