Sunday, August 12, 2018
While Miz Kittling Knits: The Doctor Blake Mysteries
It's just now occurred to me that one of the reasons why so many generations of women in my family spent hours on the needle arts might have been to keep arthritis and rheumatism away. I well remember my great-grandmother's hands turned into almost useless claws by rheumatoid arthritis-- but she still managed to do her embroidery! I have a couple of finger joints that are a bit misshapen, and I've found knitting (more than needlepoint) to be very good for keeping my fingers limber. If more than a couple of days go by without me picking up my needles, I can feel it in my fingers. So... no matter the time of year, you'll find me knitting almost every evening. Knitting and watching something mysterious on the telly.
I put away the afghan I've been making for a friend. It's made in one humungous piece and will be eight feet long (the friend is six feet four) when finished. That monster is just too hot to work on during a desert summer! Instead, I've turned to smaller projects, most of which are for here in the house.
The dishtowel (my third) is being made with the same Garter Stripes pattern, and all three are made with cotton yarn. The hand towel (my second) uses a pattern of knit, purl, and slip stitches.
That leaves the (actually) bright aqua scarf at the top. It's made from Caron Simply Soft 100% acrylic yarn, and I'm using a pattern called "Besotted." The cables form alternating columns of X's and O's which I hope you can see in the photo.
The Doctor Blake Mysteries when I watched the first episode a year or so ago, but now I'm wondering what was wrong with me. I'm really enjoying the series, although you're not going to see it in its entirety unless you have access to both Netflix and Britbox.
Dr. Lucien Blake left Australia as a young man and headed for Southeast Asia. In Singapore at the start of World War II, he spent three years in a Japanese prisoner of war camp. Now he's back in Australia and has taken over his father's medical practice as well as his on-call role as police surgeon.
At the start of the series, Blake hasn't been back very long, and after what he's experienced, he finds it almost impossible to put up with those who (1) constantly watch him to see if he measures up to his father or (2) rich hypocrites who don't want their status quo disturbed or (3) those who want to cover up the truth. He shoots off his mouth before he has all the facts, and on occasion, I kept expecting those pompous jerks in Ballarat to run him out of town on a rail (with or without the tar and feathers).
But time wears away some of the sharp edges of his wartime experiences, and he settles down to doctoring and finding killers. Craig McLachlan is excellent as Blake, and he has a marvelous supporting cast. I was sad when I read that the Australian Broadcasting Corporation abruptly canceled the series. It seems that they're suffering from A&E Syndrome. Remember when A&E canceled Longmire, their highest-rated program because it didn't fit their demographics? Well, The Doctor Blake Mysteries is the ABC's highest-rated program. You have to wonder about these corporate executive types sometimes!