As you surely know by now, the 2010 Winter Olympics in lovely Vancouver, BC are fast approaching; they begin February 12th, one month from today. That also means the Ravelympics are almost upon us. I competed for the first time two summers ago during the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing and knit my Dr. G's Memory Vest in 17 days.
This time around, I won't have as much time to knit because we leave for a 7-day cruise on February 13th that returns February 21st. If I don't knit a stitch on vacation, that would leave me with only 7 whole days. Let's break this down.
- From the official Ravelry page: "The One Rule To Rule Them All: Challenge yourself by starting and finishing projects during the 2010 Winter Olympics." (The emphasis is mine.) At first I thought I would knit a hat or two, or maybe a large gauge pair of house socks and call it good. But are the Olympics just about participation? In all honesty, for some countries/athletes, yes participation is enough, but that's not the true spirit of the Olympics. Every athlete has challenged him or her self to be the best and aspires to win the gold medal. We're definitely looking at a sweater or vest here.
- I will be on vacation for 9 days during the games and let's face it, I'm just not knitting for hours a day on a cruise. I will, however, have the opportunity to knit on the drive to and from Chicago at either end of the trip, and on the flights to and from San Juan, PR. And surely I can squeeze in a few rows before bed or during a day at sea. What exactly constitutes a challenge with those parameters is still to be determined. Another thing to consider here is all the 'venue' changes. Managing DPNs or cable needles only complicates things. I'm all for challenges, but complications I can do without.
- Is it better to have tried and failed than not to try at all? While I don't want to disappoint Team Michigan with an incomplete project at the end of the games, a half knit sweater is 50% closer to a finished sweater than one that isn't started at all. I think an Olympic athlete would answer this question in a heartbeat with a strong affirmative.
- Pattern selection. This again comes back to the challenge concept. Last time I knit a cabled vest with all the time I chose to devote (minus work) to the task. Are a raglan or seamless hybrid sweater equivalent with my time constraints? A sweater has sleeves where the vest doesn't but I'd probably knit it in stockinette since that's what I want anyway.
- Some miscellaneous issues to consider: How much yarn will I need to bring? I probably need to plan to be at least a third done by the end of the trip. Will I have enough room to pack it all? Have to leave room for
souvenirsbooze. Will it totally suck to knit with wool in the Caribbean? Will there be enough room on the plane? Will security let me through with needles and cables?