Hello, dear reader! Here at my blog you will find glimpses of joy, creativity, travels, books, food experiences, short reports on museum visits, funny and serious stuff worth noticing. With this also comes a pinch of analyses and reflections. This is a dynamic blog, meaning I sometimes go back in the archive and update the posts. If you are following my blog from a phone, click on "View web version" at the bottom of the page - it facilitates the reading. Enjoy! /Jana :)
Börringe kloster used to be a monastery, which started where the entrance wall is now, but kept its name and became a castle a little further away instead. I think one of the guys at my high school is related to this family? He is a year older. Back then, I looked in the school catalogue (with photos of every class) and discovered he had a twin on the previous photos, so I asked. "We didn't want to attend the same school so we flipped a coin, and I stayed. He joined another high school." See where curiosity brings you.
I spoke to the cousin of the family who owns this castle as well. "I grew up here and played here as a child", he said, and warned me about that a castle needs a lot of attention. "Tullesbo slott nextdoors is for sale, go and have a look", he also said.
I called the real estate agent to ask about the castle, and then by chance we passed by it. The freshest castle I have ever seen, but not what I had in mind. Btw this is a bottle of what used to be my favourite drink: cloudy apple juice. The local cider factories are always the best, but don't make enough apples to be sold everywhere in the country.
At the shop, I found a ring where the top jewel could be SCREWED OFF and another SCREWED ON. Three, two, one and the precious stone had bounced of my palm and INBETWEEN two wooden tiles. Vildana did some fishing (hunting for precious stones, now added to the list) and we evaluated this excellent invention to have some downsides.
I have many comments.
Should do that some day.
in the name of
Wait, is somebody coming?
Anyhow: *continues singing*
"Liking my ride?"
"This is my iPhone 9. And this would be your... Vehicle X2017?.."
Love those horns. (A Christmas gift, if you wondered.) Last year, I told you about how we had dropped a horn when we stopped to ask for directions. The couple out for a walk kept their poker faces rather tight. "Did you drop something by any chance? We can get it for you."
Partenokarpi (Swe), partenocarphy (Eng) - a plant's ability to give rise to fruits without pollination and without producing seeds, the capitalistic upside of this being customers more happy eating food with fewer seeds in it. Diploma mill, degree mill, bogus institutions - fake "universities" around the world that sell degrees. By 2010, they were about 800 around the world. Typical signs of a bogus institution: it assures you it is not bogus on the website; the entrance levels are low, there is a picture of the diploma on the site available. DARVO - deny, attack, reverse victim and offender. IoT/Internet of things - the internet-based system that keep your things connected and together. Enables for example that you get a phone call or notification when there is a security alert, and you can communicate back and get a gadget at home started while you are away from home.
I am getting glimpses of what our future will be like, based on the discussions (and the lack thereof) I read and hear.
In the future, we will:
- know so much about the hormonal cycles, that our society will be more adapted to them in all aspects of life. The 8 hour day (or 12...) will be better adapted in relation to weather and the sleeping cycles of the individuals who's total presence is of utter importance to the task performed (say, surgery). In this way, we will eliminate the problem with so tired doctors, that they cause deaths by giving incorrect prescriptions to their patients. We will also become happier, less stressed and will plan our days differently.
- Information will be transmitted more syncronised with how our brain works. Hence, advertisements in certain places and contexts will be forbidden, as they will be considered unnecessary information overload. On the other hand, it also means that some ads will be played faster to some, and more slow to others.
- We will make big eyes at the past, wondering how medical care put so little effort into the health of women who are about to give birth or just have given birth. This will be taught in schools at an early age and become widespread, supercommon facts.
- A lawsuit will alter how we think and treat science today. This will have massive effects, including the vanishment of many skin care products and foods. Ingredients will be printed on the front, big fonts, clarifying the need and the effects. Therefore you will be able to orientate better chemically and biologically in shops: it's not "Brilliant billion lush hair cream" I am looking for, but shampoo with jojoba and argan oils in them please.
- A friend has a particular calendar to keep track of people's birthdays! SO SWEET. - my brother tried to put on a shoe on my foot, Cinderella style. It was a modern process, because it was a sports shoe, and the way of dressing my foot with the shoe - some hammering, some pressing - was also a modern experience. All done with humour and love. - a group of PhD students at Royal School of Technology wanted to celebrate a professor's birthday. They double checked he hadn't announced that he would be gone that Friday, got him a chocolate cake and sent an email. "Would you come and join us in the pentry for a coffee? No reason." The professor replied: "Unfortunately no - because of 'no reason', I am out of town."
Perfect book: light-weight and outright provocative. Not to me, of course, but for example to the man I vaguely know who I read it out loud for. He insisted he wanted studies and numbers and as he believed every individual is unique, he was against "classifying people in groups" (such as men and women), because "you know what will happen next - we will start grouping people into what religion they belong to". He missed that this book is a study, full of many concepts fetched from anthropology which explains and observes human behaviour. He also missed that groups are everywhere - political parties, the golf club, hazard groups as sorted by insurance companies, dog lovers, etc etc. I looked at him. "Are you aware of that as belonging to the group of 'men', you have continuously interrupted me?" So he started raising his hand when he wanted to speak.
Of course, in fact, this book is not provocative at all. What it does is pointing out some important structures and behaviours, carefully builds concept on concept and offers important insights. I think, however, it's not a book for beginners. Unlike the offerended man above, it's good to have thought about the matter for quite some time before starting reading, or one risks to not understand the information at all. Misinterpret. Get confused. Foremost - one should give it a chance. If you feel an urge to fervently debate this, it's actually a clear sign that you instead should take a step back and really try to understand the concepts of power, see the structures in different contexts, get the bigger picture. Note that the study is about Swedish couples without children who consider themselves to be equal - which turns out to not really be the case. My advice is to read it by sections - you can choose what interests you the most, instead of reading all chapters chronologically.
- I got an answer to the e-mail I had sent to a Swedish director in 2016! Only took three years! I am SUPER happy, of course, especially because I asked not for my sake, but for a friend's.
- I made a bet and won... so now a friend owns me not only a dinner, but also a jar of jam (we discussed saffron curd instead of lemon curd first). Conclusion: bet for tasty things when you have the opportunity.
- An acquintance told me about a lecturer's vivid way of teaching: he had taken a rope, 38 meters long (to represent the 3.8 million years of life's existence on the planet) and took the time to wind it around the classroom. Unwinding it, he taught what appeared on Earth's surface and when. Of course, only the last millimeter represented the humans.
I had experienced something new and upsetting, but I couldn't share for many reasons. One was: it wasn't really about me, but mostly about someone else. Something from today reminded me of this riddle - what I told my friend that day after we left the gym. Every detail is true: I saw this thing, and realised I had to do something. But the next thing I knew, something else happened upon that. I made a decision and had to go and ask on my way there. Nobody knew. I gave an update and left. I found a way. (Are you with me? I asked the friend. Not exactly, she replied. Good, I said, and went on.) I succeed only to some extent. Then I went back. I tried again. Kept track. The next day I was asked if I was ok. I was, and I had done everything I could given the conditions, but was still a bit shaken up. It was confirmed that I indeed had used resources available wisely. "...ok...", my friend said. "Thank you for telling, Jana."
- that one soon day (yes I used this style on purpose) I will come home and my apartment door will be fully covered with flowers in a breathtaking way. - to find a shirt or sweater with a city seen from above on it. I am thinking rooftops, stapled on each other Spanish/Italian/French style, or something similar. It should be interesting and something to admire. - that education was a free thing all over the world, on all levels (not the ones that target companies and such, the others)
I visited a super cute shop, as proved above, in Vaxholm - northern Stockholm archipelago, one could say, simplifying geography a little - where the shop owner was very... Cinderella-like. I like very much when the vendor asks if I want to have a closer look at the item I have verbally expressed curiosity about, but then doesn't insist on purchase. Thank you for that.
Instead of a super cute wite cover of wool with symmetric soft pink tulips on it that was at display by the window,
I got a pink soap. In Oxford, two years ago, my host had a soap with a magnet in it, so it could hang relatively free in the bathroom.
The rope reminded me of it, so I thought I should give soaps hanging free a try.
Your religion is what decides how many colours you are able to name, I read in an article when I was twelve. There was some sort of a chart, where green stood out: some tribes in Africa are able to name and distinguish more nuances of green than anybody else. (Magazine was Swedish and science-focused: Illustrerad vetenskap.) And true - I guess I could see them all, but I would have to make up non-consensus terminology to describe them; pine green, tea green, frozen bamboo. (Bottle green and military green would have been understood by a bigger audience.) And the other day, I got to experience a nuance of love I also would have to make a poetic description of to cover fully. The person spoke about love in a calm way - she didn't mention the word, but an event took place where her love could be expressed - and there was a tranquility and a long-lasting power in it of a kind I had never felt from a person before. It was so unusual, that I later compared it with admiration of a painting, where you see the brush strokes and how they unite to express a moment not measured in seconds, and that particular sentiment reveals a rich inner life. Can one collect nuances of love?
"Välkommen hem till mig den 16 mars från 16:30 💛 Vårdagjämningen markerar att dagarna äntligen är längre än nätterna igen. Den 20 mars infaller det i år. Solen går ner 17:50 🌅" Translation: an (abbreviated!) invitation to celebrate that the sun now will be up a little longer. This might be the best invitation, relying on nature's forces. You know you are late if the sun is down, no excuses available. I have no pictures from last night's evening, when we went out at 18 (it was of course overcast and just a glimpse of sunset under the cloud cover visible). Beforehand we had decided to climb a hill, lit sparkles and descend in complete silence. Of course we giggled, partly because the way up was icy, muddy, slippery, without a pathway, and one of us had exactly the right shoes for it - black high heels.
- Two girls "having a coffee break" at a White guide café. They are eleven, have ordered a bun each (of course nothing to drink) and sit across each other discussing recent events in their lives. This was the cutest, and maybe peaked when one of them said "during the past years..." - Some time ago, I was in love with a boy who played the drums. I had never heard his name until we got introduced during a pancake breakfast. Last week I learned it's a famous name historically and represents at least one dynasty in the region of former Persia with surroundings.
Inspired by a conversation with a friend about sustainability, the ecological footprint every individual leaves and how our consumption tends to be as if we had not one Earth but two or more, let me introduce a future scenario:
Entire malls with 50-60 shops with sustainable alternatives only. We are talking specialized second hand shops. Upcycle shops. Food stores explaining where the fruits come from, the transportation routes, the way around pesticides. Restaurants serving organic, locally produced foods, environmentally aware brands and lists, certificates and other documentation that proves the customer how eco-friendly every single part of the process is. The entire facility of course arranged cleverly - all potential waste is processed nearby, restrooms are part of a water-treatment plant. Facilities are built with materials left over from other constructions or from constructions that have been disassembled. Even the paint is eco-friendly - and so is the transportation offers to get to this mall.
With various results, I have cautiously tiptoed into the realm of drying flowers, but one mustn't forget that it is part of the charm before reaching perfection. Baseline: me wanting to make my own letterpaper and my own ink. I tend to send lots of letters, and with it grow requirements on size, shape and colour. I am not as good yet to fulfill all that by my own crafting, this is my first try of just drying them - not integrating them with a letterpaper - and this is what came out of it.
Among the online instructions, it was made clear that even if you do not see moist on the paper around your flowers, you should still change it every day. So what you do is create a sandwich: on a piece of paper, place your flower as a filling, cover it with another piece of paper and there you go, a paper-flower sandwich. You have to squeeze it between something. I used piles of books. There exist tools for exactly this activity too, the ones from the previous century/ies look like a cute frame with screws that escaped from the old-fashioned torture era. It went smooth till I left for Linköping over the weekend. I thought all the moist would dry out, but where would it go when books are in the way? The cloves had mould on them when I returned. So: change papers around your flowers daily. However, while carnations were a lost cause, the rose survived. My guess: it was more dry from the start. Additional guess: flowers thick and moisty in the middle by biology are harder to dry/make flat for letterpaper use.
Then it turns out that dried flowers do not necessarily look transparently fairylike and have the wowish shapes and looks that would make Instagram break. No; you have to ARRANGE the leaves beforehand (or know exactly which spot to start pressing on in the beginning). Take 2. Finding out: how do I make my flower so dry and flat that it can be in the background of my letterpaper? (The ink production will have to wait.)
1. How to be happy; what makes me happy; what happiness is; what happiness used to be in our grandparents' eyes (to some grandparents: putting food on the table is happiness! What else are you talking about, child?!) 2. What we can do about things and injustices we see. Some choose to not bother, some pay a monthly fee to various organisations, some go to the dangerous places themselves and fix what they can 3. How to not fail at work or just how successful everyone else (seemingly) is. This, for some, even includes eating at the "right" restaurant and be seen at the "right" places. Unless you have a very clear strategy with this, not recommended 4. How to meaningfully spend the days 5.How the world is - why some are bad, some good and some don't take a stand (and where I am on this scale) 6. What big changes you want to do next in life (and choosing the giving up/not giving up path) 7. What I want in life 8. Doubting competence in general, which usually is confused with self-accomplishment or self-esteem, and those are not the same things. Knowing the difference will lit up your life 9. How to be the perfect parent, or to not have children at all, is IVF to prefer over adoption, what happens if I survive my children? 10. The small things begin to matter more. A particular cup, enjoying a coffee at your balcony, long breakfasts on the weekends. 11. Plants (some get really involved and learn all about them and fill the house with shoots), pots in different sizes 12. Finally getting what one wants (that big TV, that car I have dreamed of, that roundtrip around the world, opening that saloon), but usually done with a bit of hesitation. Once it's booked/booked/confirmed, you tend to share this with the ENTIRE WORLD. 13. Health - creams, spa treatments, vitamins, good foods, the gym (but multiply this with a lot of expectations and hours).
Oh, we were tight, these sandals and I. I went hiking in them (!) in Spain and they served faithfully also in pouring rain (which of course happened during the hiking as well). That is my best trick by the way - sandals when it's raining. Saves worries about suede and other materials that hate water, dries quickly, can be wiped off.
Fancy, undeniable. With a mirror heel (!), even more fancy. I learned bachata (which I don't even really count as a dance now when I know the steps... it's more a jerky hug to music) and advanced my salsa and tango skills in these. But. When I saw a bus I wanted to catch, I had to take these heels off and ran bare feet. The bus driver waited patiently.
It looks like these slip-ins are almost not there. They are particularly memorable, because it was the first pair of shoes I bargained for. At H&M. The vendor accepted it, but said I couldn't return the shoes after. Nor was that my intention and I had them for many years.
Gladiator love, ish. These darlings and I met in June in Bath and have served me very well on adventures. It's a British brand that I will try to come back to and explore more. I mean, look: you can adjust the size along all the foot. There is some great potential here.
These velvet Spain-produced heels have such a well-made structure, that the shoemaker prolonged their life with new soles and complimented them. They are from Topshop! Love them fondly. Still with me today.
So, Jana, how is the letter counting going? I stated some numbers in the beginning of the year about how many letters I think will send and receive (I include postcards, OF COURSE, but no official mail). Destinations so far: Canada, Belgium, France, Sweden, England, Germany. So far, the count is: Jana 21, World 6. I do have to mention that the post office did contact me three days in a row with the exact same letter content (making it Jana 20, World 9). Each time: your parcel is here! Come and get it! Or let us ship it closer to a place of your choice online! So I log in. Choose. Next day, same letter: your parcel is here! Come and get it!.. So I gave them a call. The guy on the other end: Come and get it! Your parcel is... oh, hold on a minute. The more generous statistician would say: Hey, what about the guy who got you a postcard from Denmark, brought it to Sweden and told you he had it for you? But he never sent it, or handed it over! Give it 0.25 points at least? No no no, I have not even seen the postcard! That must be the lowest criteria for counting anything in. So he could take a picture of it and send the picture as an MMS or something? Would that count? ...But then, have you heard of generous statisticians?..
- When a nice person I know suddenly showed me her sock LIKE THIS. Apparently, they are so powerful in bringing out joy, that her massage terapeut couldn't offer her any service: the terapeut couldn't stop laughing.
- When my brother told me: "I have good news", directly followed by "#fake news". Meaning: he didn't catch the train on time, and announced it with a logical labyrinth. I enjoyed this very much ofc :)
A site. Me. The site tracks everything I do (which is window shopping). Interesting: if I surf long enough, the next day I will get an email about that one of the items is for sale. So now I think I have outsmarted the system, surfing long enough to force a price drop on what interests me the most. This is almost a sport. And how has the program outsmarted me?
I have compiled some great modern denotations of colours! Here they come like a saga, fetched from online shops denotations of clothes, make up equipment in Stockholm and there might even be some hair dye references. If you would want to make up how the story continues, here are some more colours: nude caramel, cultured pearl, seductress, quite roar, lorden green and frozen bamboo. - - - - - - - As the sun streched out its blush crush shadows on the streets of Köning, she reached the famous establishment which had been in the newspapers for a month straight and gasped when she entered the farnese blue room. It was dazzling; she noted dresses in tints of dusky cannes, shapes of lips underlined with soft montrouge lipstick and dazzling paris shoes. Her own dress was a scarlet saga and matched divinely well with her atlantic eyes and sugar beige cheeks. Lana was not alone to wear such a dress; her best friend Tonia, strategically seated by the fresh danger tulips in the corner, wore a similar model in a scarlet flame colour. Tonia's new, hip hairdresser had managed the request to dye her hair into divine wine, and as the two girls graciously sat together on the chicago champagne toast chairs, they glowed success while choosing from the hot shock leather menus, making not only the waiters in snowblink shirts and swag trousers curiously turn their heads.
Hi fellas. Here I am, wearing super poisonous stuff: a cotton top, polyester trousers and a cotton cardigan. Well, the light in the tunnel is that the trousers and the cardigan are purchased second hand, resulting in fewer emissions, but until now I didn't know how polluting the clothing industry is. Sure, I heard a pair of jeans needs 400 liters of water to produce, but i didn't know about the quantities of chemicals consumed to make viscose, bamboo, cotton, cupro, polyamide, nylon, modal. Some of the processes, like for viscose and modal, give fetuses damages. Others keep causing nature harm when we simply wash the garments, like fleece and polyester, because washing them makes small pieces tear off. Cashmere is not super sustainable either, as goats apparently tear up root systems of trees, causing rain to flush away soil and creating deserts (!). If one is to choose silk, opt for wild silk, as the larvae usually has become butterflies already and their silk covers left behind are used, instead of killing all the larvae while still in their cocoons. Cotton is not super great because a lot of pesticides are used on the plantations.
The least harmful materials I am aware of so far are: angora, if the rabbits are treated nice in the process. lyocell/tencel, as the chemicals used are in a closed system and the dissolving agents are kinder to the environment. (Then, kinder, I dunno, I think we can raise the bar higher. Lyocell originates from bamboo, and bamboo requires much less water than cotton and grows woho-fast without fertilizers, but 5.5 kg of chemicals per kilo fibers are needed still.)
can grow on nutrition-deprived soil and need no fertilizers.
alpacka, which contains no wool fat and is better than other wools from an allergy perspective. linen, as it requires very little water, but it takes a long time to process: about two years, including growth. In a Swedish documentary, they gave it all names: sådd (sowing), vältning (pressing and processing the earth), ryckning (pulling), frörepning (removing the seeds), torkning (drying) for one year (!), vattenrötning for bacteria to break down the pectine (retting in water), landrötning for mold fungus to break down the pectine (retting on land), mer torkning (more drying), bråkning - crushing wooden-like parts, skäktning - removing the wooden-like parts by scuffing, häckling - opening up the fibres, and final stage: spinning the thread. You can see a clip with exactly this information until June 2019 (I think for Swedish readers only - do tell if it works outside Sweden!).
Anakronistiskt fenomen (swe) - ett fenomen då ett föremål eller dylikt placeras i fel tidsepok, t.ex. att en film visas på dinosauriernas tid. Scarfette - scarf that reminds more of a tie, that you first put around your hair and then braid into it.
Surimi - a paste withminced fish or meat that are shaped into what appears to be new foods, for example crab sticks. Joseon - the older name of the peninsula where South and North Korea are found. language that departs from best practices - swearwords, for example.
- Bällstaviken is sand-based and used to be under water's surface. On it is an airport - Bromma flygplats. Better still: 12 meters under the landing strip (1440 meters long and 88 meters wide, if I remember it right) is an ENGINE. As in, an old train, which wasn't possible to remove so it was just left in the sand. My source is safe: a lady who worked at the airport for twelve years.
- This report. Yes, it's amazing indeed, let more women work and contribute to society to boost economies of all countries, wow. This is something many governments are still unaware of.
- This article. I have waited for these news for so long - a guy infiltrates a nazi organisation, becomes the leader, and then begins to disassemble it. His name: James Stern.
Welcome! Let's go inside the semi-transparent igloo which is used as a hotel at night, museum by day and melts when spring comes into the lake below.
Even parts of the light sources are made of ice.
The entrance is most impressive and there are about 30 rooms, if I am to estimate.
And a church as well!
Each room has a unique design, apart from maybe three that are completely alike.
The artists' names are stated on an icy sign outside every room.
And you really get to sleep on ice. There is a mattress and a reindeer skin, but that's it.
Now I am mixing a little. This is inside the second and permanent ice hotel, right nearby.
One big difference is that this section contains luxury suites for 11,000 sek a night, with the equally luxury detail of having direct and private access to a heated bathroom.
A throne right outside.
You might be surprised to know that inside even the non-permanent ice hotel, there is electricity and some effectful lamps. Here, for example, I am holding a fish.
I did try the light button and all tourists jumped. I hurried to turn on the inner light of the fish again.
This takes some time to finish...
...but one can also excell the following year, when everything starts over.
Most rooms have a sign, "please respect the art". That means hug it tight, right?
Interior design ideas, anyone?
Super cool (ha, ha) is that there are ice blocks ready for you to make art. For a fee, of course. Right next to it - a bar. In Stockholm, there is a sister bar: it's cold all year long and visitors get a coat in the summer.
The guest book by the exit is among the most summery I have seen - and has those photos (actual printed ones) of working it with a saw and the process of building the place up, block by chunk.