The Cilantro Cowl Adventure

Okay, so it wasn’t really an adventure. But it was definitely an experience! And the cowl was only coincidental.

In December, I was itching to do some crocheting OTHER than Christmas Etsy orders so I went searching the interwebs for something to make. Of course, I ended up with another cowl/scarf. I just can’t help myself! They are just so soothing and easy to make and I don’t really need to focus too much on it. What  a relief!

For this project, I finally used one of the skeins I picked up during the SD Yarn Crawl this past fall. I decided that it was time to use the gorgeous purple skein that I had always intended for a scarf! The yarn I used was Malabrigo Rios in Purpuras. It is 100% Superwash Merino Wool which I have never used before. Up until the Yarn Crawl, I don’t think I had ever purchased a yarn other than acrylic. This yarn is nice and soft, but I haven’t washed it yet so I don’t know how it will turn out.

The pattern I finally chose to work on was the Cilantro Cowl by Jennifer Dickerson over at Fiber Flux Blog. Since I used a purple color, however, my cowl is more like the “Red Cabbage” cowl. Haha!

Anyway, you may be wondering what kind of adventure could be involved with a cowl. Well, let me tell you: that was the night I found out were the water shut-off valve to our house was.

Oh. My. Goodness. What a night!

It had been raining on and off all day and night and it was also really windy. Not your typical San Diego weather. Around, ohhh, 9:30 pm or so, I was sitting on the couch crocheting and watching some Anthony Bourdain on Netflix (the show name escapes me at this moment, but it’s the one on CNN), when I heard the wind pick up and heard something slam. I figured it must have been the trash can so I didn’t concern myself too much with it.

However, right after the slam I heard noises coming from our water softener/purifier in the garage. We have it set to run once a week to do its business, and recently the power had been shut off so the times were messed up. I figured it must be running a cycle of some sort, which I knew was unusual for so late at night. So, I just kind of ignored it for a bit and went back to work. After a bit, the sound started irritating me because it was a little loud and the baby was sleeping so I didn’t want to wake him up. I went out and unplugged the machine thinking that would solve the problem, but I still heard the noises! Then I realized that the noise wasn’t coming from the machine, but from the pipes and in the wall.

On a whim, I opened the side door to our garage and stuck my head out. I could hear water, but it was more that just the rain. So, I stepped out a bit and looked back towards our side gate and I saw water seeping under the fence! I rushed to the gate and opened it up and stopped in my tracks. The stupid rubber/plastic shed that the previous owners had left behind had fallen over sideways in the wind right on top of the one, and only, water pipe sticking out of the house. Oh, and the pipe has freakin’ pvc pipes!!! Who does that?! With my superhuman strength (okay, not really) I pulled the mini shed off of the pipe half-expecting water to start shooting in my face in some giant geyser. Luckily (I guess), the water was pouring down from the pipe, but it was flooding the back corner of our yard. I called my husband in a panic asking him where the water shut-off was, but he wasn’t sure either and had to find out (we’re new homeowners, don’t judge us!).

While I waited for a return call (with a dying cell phone), I looked frantically around the house for a flashlight since we have ZERO lighting in the corner of the yard. During the year, I swear I see sooooo many flashlights, but this night I couldn’t find a SINGLE ONE. ZERO. NADA. It was so frustrating! After what seemed like forever, my husband called back and said the valve was under the water softener so I ran to shut it off.


But now I was soaked, cold, and upset. I should mention that I did end up getting sprayed in the face with water when I tried (in vain) to stick the pipe back in the, uh, pipe – I had no idea what I was doing! While this experience wasn’t the worst thing to happen, it was a big deal for me. It seems like these things always happen when I am alone and I am unprepared. After this, my husband texted me and said he was leaving work early (he was working nights). To pass the time until he got back, I went back to crocheting since I was too wired to do much else. Right as he returned home, I finished up the cowl.

Here is the finished product:Cilantro Infinity Scarf

It’s not very long, but that’s because the skein I used only has 210 yards. I wish I had had more yarn, but I also hate leaving projects unfinished and didn’t want to search for some more yarn. Plus, after a night like that, a finished project made me feel better! This picture shows the color best. It’s a very nice deep purple. The close-up shots make it look much light and washed out:

Cilantro Infinity Scarf 2

But here you can better see the texture and pattern. It’s a really simple pattern and fun to do with a mixture of puff stitches and double crochets.

Oh, and if you’re interested, here is a picture of the water pipe:

Broken Water Pipe

I guess you can’t really tell, but that area with the brown “ring” is the broken portion. It broke right at the end of the metal coming from the wall. We’ve since replaced the pvc pipes with copper, but have yet to get rid of the shed (we need to take it to the dump).

And that’s my adventure!

Mostly, I just wanted to do a post to let you know I was still alive. 😉 And since that cowl was the most recent thing I made, and had an interesting story attached, I figured it was a good enough post!

Do you  know where YOUR water shut-off valve is?


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