I thought that after knitting for nine years I had grasped the concept of following the directions in a knitting pattern. Apparently, I have not. Or maybe I have and I just need to pay more attention to the pictures provided. Or maybe I shouldn't knit while watching sci-fi movies over the Atlantic. Let me explain.
I was working on the second of the two Paper Moon socks yesterday and did a double-take after glancing at one of the pictures. It clearly showed that the cable which starts near the toe and is "unwound" to form the gusset, is supposed to be re-braided after the heel is finished and the leg begins. I went and grabbed my completed sock. Not only had I NOT done that, but the back of my sock didn't have the cabling and garter stitch motifs that the sock in the picture does. The back of my sock's leg was plain, except for the oddly placed purl gutters, which I had assumed where just there as placeholders for the cuff that is knit in the last few rounds.
How did this happen!? I started this sock in Germany, so I could claim travel fatigue or sleep deprivation. I can't believe that I worked on this off and on for over a month and never saw what I'd done Or rather, I can believe it, because the evidence is staring me in the face. Look at this photo of my pair in progress. The sock on the needles is the second sock, with the cable brought back together and the pattern going around the whole leg above the heel. The completed sock is sitting there like a reverse mullet hairstyle -- party in the front, business in the back. Boring!
When I reread the instructions for the leg, and then looked at the charts, I could see where I strayed. After a set up round where the purl gutters are established, the instructions say to work as established. There is no chart specifically for the back of the leg, although by the time you get there it's not too hard to see where you're going. Unless, of course, your eyes are glued to a tiny screen on the back of the seat in front of you, watching a hapless South African bureaucrat making a mess of intergalactic race relations.
I'm going to re knit the leg of that first sock.