Once the short border was complete, I fell into a stocking stitch reverie, mind wandering as I admired the views from the window. Okay, so I hadn’t properly appreciated the Project's beginning but I was thoroughly enjoying working on something new. Separated, as I was, from my many other WIPs (works in progress), it was easy to ignore any guilt that might have otherwise been associated with this course of action say, if I'd been sat in the same room as the multiple project bags. I was also loving the speed at which the Project seemed to be growing – I was using 4mm needles but the rows were short (or maybe they just seemed particularly short compared to those of Husband’s Jumper): Katherine the Knitting Machine was on fire (and hadn't yet had a cup of tea!). Look at this, I've only just cast on and already I'm starting to shape! This could be the fastest Project in Katherine's history. And when I've finished, I can... Oh yes, just listen to me falling head first into that ol' trap. I am almost relieved to have a day-filled with non-knitting activities to distract me from these nonsensical deliberations.
Hours later and as I take the first homeward bound train, I reach for New Project and relax into the familiar knit and purl. And I wonder, is it right to classify this as "new"? Has the fact that Project has been returned to Knitting Bag for a working day mean that it’s no longer "new"? Is it only "new" for that knitting session when Project was cast on? I don't think so. Does a Project cease to be "new" at a specific stage in the pattern, for example when you start the armhole shaping or complete the first sock? Or is it when you start the second ball of yarn? Again, perhaps not.
So is it time related? If I could sit for a whole day with my knitting where I cast on, for example, the back of a jumper, and – barring those short but essential refreshment breaks – don't stop knitting all day, how far do you think I could get? Yes, okay, a stupid question as there are far too many variables but it would be safe to say that I'd have at least started ball number two. After a good nights sleep and I pick up the same needles the following morning, could I still say that I was working on my "New Project"? Surely yes. But would that be true after two days? A week? Maybe, maybe not.
So maybe it's the interaction of this "New Project" with any others (can you tell that I used to "do" science?!)? So say on Saturday, I start a New Project, work on it again on Sunday but then on Monday, return to a previously started Project, is "New Project" still "new"? How about if I continued knitting "Older Project" for a week and then retuned to "New Project"? Or don't touch "New Project" for a month? Hmmm... After only two days of actual knitting, will it feel new when I eventually pick it up again?
One obvious end to referring to a project as "new" would be when you cast on another "new" one but what rational person starts multiple projects within a few days of each other? Oh, I know: Knitters of accessories and baby garments. (Phew! The relief of finding a sensible answer to that one!) Clearly this question needs considerable research but I was unable to ponder further as it was time to change trains. In stark contrast to all previous train journeys, train number two was very, very busy and I was lucky to get a seat. There was no room for "New Project" but I have learnt from previous rush-hour experiences and out came the socks. Definitely not a new project, let’s call this one "old faithful".