and it is Five Candles

now at the fifth night

I easily completed the trip to the SFVA this morning by taking the BART from Berkeley and the free Bauer shuttle from 5th & Mission. I love the shuttle which is really a large, comfortable coach bus with seat belts if one is so inclined.  In fact, the connections were good enough that I managed to arrive significantly early for my appointment which was to precede infusion #3.

Didn’t seem to faze the screening nurse or either of the chemo nurses. The first did the quick screen, the later two just hauled me in, drew the lab and let me sit in one of their comfortable chairs which I waited on both the results and my doc. We agreed on this week, next week and a repeat scan the following week before determining if I need more weekly therapy or can go to q4 week maintenance.

While I was waiting, I started on Bill R’s hat. Why not, thought I, it lets me observe without being obvious.

my yarn choice

There is a moderate amount of turnover during the day as some patients have more and others less meds to infuse. Some chemo takes 10 minutes, others take hours. Part protocol, part science and part art I think.  I had a chance to talk to several of my compatriots. Today I was the only one in the room who was both a vet and a retiree from which I am assuming that just about everyone else met the means test for care. Home location ranged from Santa Rosa to Oakland to Alameda (+ my Berkeley) in addition to several who were local to SF.

I promised to bring cookies next week (at least two of the guys are going to be hanging out as well) so now I will just have to see which one of my lovely daughters in town will bake them for me. I can do breads and scones but can’t seem to manage anything other than the “slice & bake” you can find in the grocery store cool case.

Everything went well and I was done by 1400, caught the 1440 Bauer Bus, the BART and was at North Berkeley less than an hour later. All of which was much easier than dealing with traffic and the Bay Bridge.

I mentioned the hat –

the first 8-9 cm of the hat

The pattern is Exeter, the yarn is STR in fingering weight with 160 stitches on 2.25mm needles (details for those who knit).


I didn’t get a chance to work on this till evening when George and I listened to NPR and chatted.  We stayed with the radio programs through Market Place and into Fresh Air. There was an excellent set of interviews with Carrie Fisher which had been set to air and now served as a retrospective.

28 Dec – another 11 rows

and the second face close to complete. I still am being driven nuts by all the fussy flower hair stuff which necessitate color change after color change. If I was as disciplined as my friend Jill who completes 10×10 sections in order and whose work always looks neat, I might not have all those stray colors out there… But this really isn’t bad for 4 days…

(4400 – (11×44)) = 3916 to go….

or 132 – (3+15+17+11) = 86 rows to go. So I am about 1/3 of the way done….


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About Holly

fiber person - knitter, spinner, weaver who spent 33 years being a military officer to fund the above. And home. And family. Sewing and quilting projects are also in the stash. After living again in Heidelberg after retiring (finally) from the U.S. Army May 2011, we moved to the US ~ Dec 2015. Something about being over 65 and access to health care. It also might have had to do with finding a buyer for our house. Allegedly this will provide me a home base in the same country as our four adult children, all of whom I adore, so that I can drive them totally insane. Considerations of time to knit down the stash…(right, and if you believe that…) and spin and .... There is now actually enough time to do a bit of consulting, editing. Even more amazing - we have only one household again. As long as everyone understands that I still, 40 years into our marriage, don't do kitchens or bathrooms. For that matter, not being a golden retriever, I don't do slippers or newspapers either. I don’t miss either the military or full-time clinical practice. Limiting my public health/travel med/consulting and lecturing to “when I feel like it” has let me happily spend my pension cruising, stash enhancing (oops), arguing with the DH about where we are going to travel next and book buying. Life is good!
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6 Responses to and it is Five Candles

  1. Beth says:

    I have to tell you……and you probably already know it… are an amazing woman. First, the narration based on your “Madame Lafarge” point of view, then the kind offer of cookies (efficiently delegated to the children, which I had to laugh at!), then the photo of “the hat”. You always make me smile.

    Keep up the good work! You are meeting this head on, as you do with everything (I will NEVER forget the story of the orphan socks in the laundry room). Stay the course. You are amazing.
    Happy HEALTHY NEW YEAR to you and your wonderful family.

    • Holly says:

      I keep thinking things coulee be so much worse. I could be in the situation of not having any choices. I could be penniless and on the street. I could be a bitch. Oh, wait! I am one…

      Never mind, that sort of slipped out.

      and I am dreaming of running off to a ship….

  2. Bill R says:

    Jo bought a tub of chocolate chip dough. I baked up several batches and thought the quality good. She added walnuts to hers. I prefer plain. Just saying.

  3. Cat says:

    And, from what I can see of it, the hat looks strong and masculine – good choice I would say.

  4. Janet says:

    You are doing remarkably well. I

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