First, the good news. Look what I ended up with left over after plying!
That's twice now. Brilliant!!
Now for the weird news - and a big lesson learned. For some reason at the beginning of both bobbins I started out spinning the singles at about the weight and twist that this wool really called for.
On both bobbins, after about 2 yards or so, I evidently reverted back to habit, and although I thought I was spinning at a much heavier gauge than usual... I actually was spinning pretty close to my current 'setpoint'. It looked thicker in my hand, it looked thicker on the bobbin - but when I plied it up, there it was: 2 yards or so of worsted, and then back to fingering. It clearly wants to be worsted, so it's more thick-and-thin than it should be for fingering; the Spinning Universe was trying to teach me, and I was not listening.
I am in a Spinning Rut.
Now that I know this, I know that I must choose the gauge right away, then tape a little length of the spun single to a card and regularly compare what I'm spinning to what is on that card. A pain in the neck, and I won't bother doing it when I'm spinning to my 'setpoint', but for wool that calls specifically for a certain type of spinning, obviously it's necessary.
And now for the brilliant bit - and a second Lesson Learned.
I confess that when the Paos so kindly sent me that roving, I thought, "Well, it's very smooshy and will be lots of fun to spin, but what am I going to do with the colors?" Because for the most part they weren't at all the colors I would have normally got on my own, and I couldn't visualize making them Mine. The darker pink and the turquoise seemed my style - but they were so much brighter than the other muted, sandy colors that I was worried they (the turquoise in particular) would stick out like a sore thumb once everything was spun up. But I thought, "Well, obviously lots of other people like these colors, so I will do the best I can, and hopefully someone will want it."
I still wanted to make it in 'my style' of colorways, so I took all the colors apart and laid them out in the order that I thought would work decently together, and off I went. After the singles were done, I thought, "Oh, well, it's not awful, but it's still rather dull-looking. I hope it won't look too monochromatic when it's all put together..."
Off I trudged to dutifully ply it up.
And, well, this is the result.
It's gorgeous! I LOVE it. I am an idiot, and a color bigot, and I apologize profusely to the Paos for thinking that they might not have quite caught my taste when they visited; they clearly are brilliant, tasteful people and I will never doubt their wisdom again.