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K is for Knitting shop assistant

Once again I have picked a theme for the A to Z Challenge. This time I aim to entertain rather than to educate. My theme is careers or occupations. I begin with a piece of creative writing.

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Kate and Keith own a knitting shop. They know how to knit by hand and using machines. Although they are the proprietors, they still work as shop assistants. Customers are glad of their advice about yarn, patterns, needles and stitches. Kate and Keith also have to do all the ordering and keep the shop clean and tidy. Once a year they have to do the stock-taking. All the goods in the shop have to be accounted for – the packets of coloured yarn, the machines for sale, the tiny items, such as buttons and other decorative and functional items.

Further reading: Knitting

I am a knitter. My posts about items I have made may be found under the category Craft.

Knitting is an ancient craft. It is possible to knit flat fabric and tubes. I wonder whether Jesus’ robe was actually knitted rather than woven.  The whole of the passage including the verse in my post for the Letter D ends with the seamless robe. John 19: 1-24 

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H is for Horticulturalist

Once again I have picked a theme for the A to Z Challenge. This time I aim to entertain rather than to educate. My theme is careers or occupations. I begin with a piece of creative writing.

To navigate between posts, please scroll down to the end of the widgets in the sidebar and use the arrows << or >>.

Horace and Hortense are horticulturalists. Their top job would be to work in a world-famous garden such as Highgrove or Kew. They started growing hyacinths in bowls when they were knee-high to a grasshopper. Now they have high-level qualifications and grow hundreds of thousands of herbaceous plants every year. They work with their hands and know the value of horse-manure and humus in improving the soil.

Herbaceous border at Nymans

Herbaceous border at Nymans

Further reading: some world-famous gardens are Highgrove and The Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew

When I picked the names for the people in this post I was unaware that Hortense means gardener. I found out by chance, when I put the name into a search to confirm the spelling.

The first people in the Bible lived in a garden. Genesis 2:8-25

For once I have a suitable photo. There are more from my visit to Nymans on Sue’s words and pictures.

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The effect of our decisions on the environment

This post is a bit of a rant. Holy Week is a time for serious thought! I wondered what to write about this week, for publication on Maundy Thursday.

The Blogging from A to Z in April Challenge is about to begin. I haven’t finished reading any books, so a What I read post is not possible. So here is something I feel strongly about. The size of the problem is overwhelming. However if everyone did a little to reduce their use of plastic and synthetic materials, it would make a significant difference.

I have taken part in two organised beach cleans in the past few months and picked up litter on other occasions, putting plastic bottles and drinks cans in recycling skips. It is well-known that litter finds its way through inland waterways to the oceans.

There is a huge campaign against litter, plastic and other forms of pollution, which are damaging wildlife, especially marine life. The proliferation of hashtags relating to these issues bears witness to its reach on social media. Here are a few:-

#Plastic, #PlasticFree, #PlasticPollution, #BanPlastic, #PlasticKills, #PlasticFreeCoastlines, #2MinuteBeachClean, #StopThePlasticTide, #SurfersAgainstSewage

What I really want to highlight in this post is how our decisions regarding items we buy can also affect the environment. Much clothing is manufactured from synthetic (similar to plastic) material. It is interesting that plastic items may be recycled as polyester fleeces, for example. Not enough recycling takes place. In any case, we are warned that washing polyester clothing results in microplastics being released into our waterways.

Natural fibres are more friendly to the environment. Bamboo is a relatively new source of fibre for clothing and as a replacement for plastic drinking cups. Wool, cotton and silk are more traditional natural fibres, at least in the UK.

Consumers have rights, protected by law. For example, if goods are faulty they may be returned to the retailer for a refund. I wonder what the retailer does with the faulty goods. It is not cost-effective to repair a seam, which has not been stitched during manufacture, for instance. I suspect the goods are either sent for recycling or binned, ending up on land-fill sites.

It might be better for the environment to waive the right for a refund and repair the faulty item oneself. Of course there are many considerations. Safety may be an issue sometimes, but not in the case of finishing off an unfinished garment.

How do you react to the pollution problem? Have you changed your habits since this became such a high profile issue?