But I made another ball anyway, and this time tried a new form of embellishment - needlefelting. I used some space dyed knitting wool, followed the useful tennis-ball line, and this was the result.
It was ...OK, I suppose, but not very exciting. I think these balls need to hold your interest enough so that you keep turning them over, to examine all the details of the design. On that criteria, I'd only give this one about a 4. (I have a habit of rating my creative work on a score of 1-10). But at least I knew that needlefelting was another embellishing possibility - though it does weaken the underlying fabric, so the ball might not have a long life.
By now it was February, and we had the worst day of all - 47C heat (that's around 116.6F) and a howling North wind. I listened to the radio, as the tragedy of the Black Saturday bushfires unfolded across the state. By Sunday, we knew that nearly 200 people were missing, and whole towns had been destroyed.
As I listened to the stories of tragedy and destruction, I worked on another ball, which became my personal reminder of Dorothea MacKellar's words on the beauty and the terror of this wide brown land of ours.
I called it "Fireball".