Posted in Other

OT: ‘Corona Chic’ ?;)

Since the Corona/Covid 19 crisis began, I’ve read a lot about what you might call ’Corona Chic’, which I assume is ironic. I’m not usually very chic, but I do try my best (according to my own taste, not the latest fashions). Since this started I have mainly been wearing a tank top and either sweatpants or leggings (the apartment is far too hot). Normally, I try to get a haircut maybe twice or three times a year, since I have quite long hair. Usually, I fail and sometimes i only get a real haircut at an actual hairdresser’s maybe once a year or even once every two years. The stress of being a busy mom. 🙂 Now with the risk of getting infected, I’ve decided that from now on, I’ll try to do without professional haircuts. I try to cut it myself, but the ’styling’ must be done by my sister – who can see what’s she’s doing. It’s not that big a deal anyway. A scrunchie helps me keep my hair away from my face.

I do hope I won’t need to go to the dentist. That would be really complicated. Fortunately, no one in my family has needed any medical help, medication or dental work (although I do have half a tooth after I bit into a really hard snack when I was out traveling). After my children broke my glasses, I have even ordered a pair without trying them on, using my old prescription (though sadly, because of the so called postal services in Scandinavia, I haven’t received them and I’m still not sure if I’ll get them at all. 50 euros wasted.

What are you guys doing about your personal style these days? Do you risk getting a professional haircut? Do you go to the dentist? I assume I would try to find a way of going if I was in severe pain, but fortunately, I haven’t been. Do you choose a more relaxed clothing style? Or don’t you ever bother about fashion? My mom has an idea that being into fashion, haircuts, make up or even enjoying elaborate meals is being vane and self centered. She thinks you should ignore the body as much as you can, but she does enjoy her tea and sandwiches and occasionally a bit of chocolate. My sister and I have tried to discreetly buy her new clothes but she tends to put those away and then use her old clothes, thirty years old or more. Hopefully people won’t think we’re mistreating her. She says that people should mind their own business, but that’s something Scandinavians have a hard time doing.

Posted in Other

Morning news

Today, I read the morning paper online. There were primarily two things that struck me.

One: one man wrote in his column about the ’hug greeting’. It will have to go, so like my daughter does to all kinds of things, he says bye, bye to the hug. Great. I’ve never liked being hugged by all and sundry. Cute guys, sure, my adorable kids, of course, but that’s about it, really.

I feel the same way about the handshake. I know we’re meant to shake hands to show that we trust the other person. Way back, people had to lay down their hand weapons to shake hands so obviously you needed to be able to trust whoever you greeted like that. We even have an architectural detail in our churches called ’the weapon house’ – the hallway, entrance hall etc. Where, apparently, our ancestors had to lay down their weapons to enter the church. It shows how much our society was dependent on weaponry for defense. The extreme right have made a big deal out of the handshake as a ’Swedish’/Aryan thing. Muslims don’t want to shake women’s hands, apparently. So naturally, the authorities need to force these foreigners to shake hands like ’real people’. 😉 Note the irony here. I do not feel that way. There’s quite a bit of resistance to burkas and things like that too. There’s an old Swedish saying about needing to know your ’Pappenheimers’, meaning know your friends/allies. If someone’s wearing a burka, you know she’s religious. I think it’s far better to know what people are about, than have them forcibly hidden behind a behavior that isn’t natural to them. Same with handshakes. Besides, they’re unhygienic, even when there’s no Corona virus, no flu, nothing in particular.

The other day, I ran into a slightly eccentric man. My sister’s met him too. He asks where you’re from to get you to start to talking to him. He inevitably leads the conversation to football, because that’s his passion. So we talked a while. He asked about my son’s name and took his hand. A few seconds later my son was sucking his fingers. I consoled myself with the fact that there’s basically no corona virus here. It’s an extremely safe place and I really doubt this man had travelled lately. So I guess my son will be ok. But it was disgusting. I wish I’d had some disinfectant with me.

I’m rooting for the Bhuddist greeting. Pressing your hands together and bending your neck. I’ve seen some humorous suggestions about shoving each other with the elbows (mostly suitable for young men, I think) and a sort of ’foot shake’ that looked funny, but any kind of physical contact brings you too close to the other person. So, the Bhuddist thing. Respectful and hygienic.

Another thing I read about is the fact that Sweden hasn’t shut down our schools (except for the high schools). It was a conscious decision that other countries never tire of criticizing Sweden for. And by the way, I get furious when our neighbors criticize us. It gets really personal for me, despite the fact that we moved away from our home country because of the change it has undergone. Sure, Sweden may be wrong, or other countries may be. I’m sure it’s far too soon to tell. Even if it was a mistake, people make mistakes. It’s hard to know what to do when something completely new hits you. Only very few people with experience of the Spanish flu are still around. None from decision making circles. Who could have known what would be best to do? All we have is the advice of the experts.

Anyway, now people are saying that closing down schools and teaching kids online has cost millions. Ok, maybe so, but if that’s true, I say they weren’t doing it right. Sitting at home would have helped me enormously and I’m sure my kids, particularly my son, would benefit from it too. Lower rents and fewer people employed would also save money. I realize that some people are hyper social and thrive on the company. I didn’t and I know my son won’t. He basically doesn’t care much for other kids. Except for cute blonde girls, but that’s another story (did I tell you about his ’date’?). If you can save yourself from the risk of infection, surely it’s better to stay at home than venture outside where people might be infectious?

I’m beginning to prepare for a life without social contacts, maybe for the foreseeable future. As long as we can manage to finish our loooong move. Get all our stuff collected and above all, a good piece of land. I very much doubt there’ll be travel or outings or actual shopping in our future. Whatever money we have we’ll spend on our home. Now I guess I’ll never meet ’Mr Right’. :/

Posted in Other

Midsummer

Today it’s Midsummer. It’s a major holiday around here (in Sweden and Finland, particularly) but since we don’t have access to any cabin/cottage or even a house of our own with a garden, we won’t celebrate much. Midsummer is supposed to be celebrated in the countryside with lots of flowers and green trees. This town is quite green though and relatively small so I guess we’ll get some of that Midsummer feeling anyway, but no seven flowers to put under our pillows to see if we’ll meet Mr Right anytime soon. LOL. No music and no dancing and no little frogs (it’s a song that’s sung at Midsummer). Actually, it was once an English song mocking French soldiers, apparently. Hence the ’frogs’. I had no idea until a Swedish historian blogged about it a few years back.

If we’d hurried up a bit maybe we could have celebrated Midsummer at a campsite. We placed an ad for a piece of land to put a mobile home on (not a camper van), an actual movable house or rather cabin or cottage. A nice man with a small campsite replied and we might move there. It’s a bit ’the back of beyond’ but that actually sounds quite charming. It’s on a small island, and I’m not that keen on the sea and the sky like that, though it’s also isolated but with a shop nearby (how nearby is a bit hard to tell from looking at the map) and there’s a bridge and a ’bicycle ferry’. I’ve never heard of anything like that, but I guess the term is self explanatory. There’s a church and some hills with a famous cave in the area. If the rent is ok, we’ll probably save a bit of money at least, which is very welcome. Of course, it’s having something of our own that’s the main thing. Now we’ll miss Midsummer in the countryside but that’s ok, we’re not really partygoers at the best of times. We’ll just have something nice to eat and drink (flavored mineral water).

We also have some things to see on tv. Right now, we’re watching some old episodes of Lewis and hoping that the second season is new to us and Vera, Poldark, The Durrells and Dublin Murders. When my children leave me time to do it, I read. I have dowloaded a bunch of books, not only from Amazon but also directly from authors whose newsletters I subscribe to. I mostly enjoy reading their newsletters and most of the books have turned out to be at least relatively good.

Posted in Petitions

XINGHUAQUIAO DOG SLAUGHTERHOUSE WENHUA ROAD, WUCHANG CITY, A FRONTLINE VOLUNTEER, ONE BRAVE CHINESE WOMAN….

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Posted in Other

A mistake – or not?

I guess I made a mistake. Or not. At least I’ve learned from this experience. The thing is, my sister and I found some yoga pants in an ad on Facebook. We really liked them, at least the pants in the photos. That wasn’t quite what we got, I think. Still, those pants are quite good and probably about half price compared to ’the real thing’. It’s just that they don’t look like I expected and I think what you buy should look like the photos in the ad. At least they seem to be made from bamboo and they’re really comfortable. They’re probably copies of the ’original’ pants. Leaving aside the fact that my mom and my sister could probably make something very similar, I’m quite happy with them, all things considered.

Now we’ve found almost exactly the same pants on Amazon. They are about twice the price but if you can trust the photos, and I think you probably can, since this is Amazon, it must be the real thing. I’m awfully tempted to buy them. I hope I’m not going to be disappointed this time again.

I’ve always wanted a pair of yoga pants since I read about them in one of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum books. Stephanie wore a pair of them and since I didn’t have any idea of what they might look like, I did an image search and thought they looked very comfortable and quite nice looking for workout clothes.

Now with the Corona crisis, I’m guessing it’s going to be a very long time until there’s any reason to dress up in anything more formal than jeans or sweatpants. It’s a good thing that we’re introverts. We’ve been practicing all our lives for this. 😉

Posted in Other

Shoes again

Today, we all went to Lidl. Well, I stayed outside with my son, who prefers to keep moving, but anyway, outside Lidl, in the parking lot, I saw a girl who was probably just a little taller than me and definitely skinnier (probably a teenager). She wore shoes that were about the same size as mine. Now, maybe she had exceptionally big feet but maybe some sneakers look that big. I now feel a lot more comfortable with my shoes than before. They are a little too big, but not really ridiculously so. I think I’ll keep them.

Posted in Other

Shoe problems

This is the sixth blog post I write but it’s the first I’ll actually post. Nothing happens so I don’t really have anything to say. Except to whine a little about my shoes. Recently I bought a pair of sneakers. Today was the second day I wore them. They’re a nice color and very comfortable, but when I was going to buy them, there was only one pair left. My size, but it also said on the site that they’re very big so it would be best to buy a size smaller than usual. Like I said, there was only one pair left so I ordered them anyway. Now I feel silly. I look like a clown in those big shoes. I’m not sure what to do. I should probably have picked another pair. But these were the ones I thought would be best. If there had only been a pair in a smaller size.

What should I do? Try to buy another pair? Or keep these and feel like a clown or Pippi Longstocking. What would you do?

Posted in Other

Getting a bit scared

This far into the crisis, and having listened to the grim news from Sweden, we’ve become more nervous and wary about being infected. My mom is quite old, even if she’s very healthy. And my sister and I are a bit overweight and used to have high blood pressure after our pregnancies. Not anymore though. The last time I had my blood pressure checked it was as low as ever, before getting pregnant (and suffering from pregnancy toxicosis). I think maybe I had a touch of white coat hypertension, since testing at home, lying comfortably on a sofa doesn’t show anything like as high results as they used to when I went to a clinic.

We try to keep our spirits up in different ways. My mom got a set of balls of yarn and a crochet needle, but she says she’d prefer to knit. I would too, but right now I’m doing other things. My sister and I have been exploring in Second Life and will now try to get our homepages/blogs up and running. Well, mostly we’ll start over but even that will take a bit of work. New themes or not, for instance. And since I finally have access to my new/ish computer, I have started downloading free e-books. Unfortunately, my children have massacred my old Bookeen Cybook Odyssey. :/Even if anyone could find spare parts, this time it’s beyond salvation. And we need to keep an eye on our expenses right now, so no Kobo (which is what I want this time) for me. My mom needs a new phone because – you guessed it – the children smashed her old one as well. Besides, it was a faulty phone to begin with.

At least ordering food online has worked out quite well. From one company. Another won’t deliver in this city. Very odd since it’s quite big. Another one just cancelled our order today, when they were due to deliver for the first time. Wrong address, they say. Ha. I wonder if it’s because this used to be an ancient storage building where no one has ever lived? My sister has been in a chat with them and we’ll see how that goes. We just found out that one of our favorite chocolates are sold by the company we get regular deliveries from. So naturally, we’ll need to get some of that as well. Unfortunately, Denmark doesn’t seem to have our very favorite brand available online. Typical. There’s always something. But in the grand scheme of things, I guess that’s nothing much to get worked up about. Just like our favorite beverage (if you can call flavored mineral water a beverage) is only sold in Sweden. It’s completely delicious. Mineral water with real fruit or berries added. Our favorite is strawberry, closely followed by raspberry. I wonder if we could import it. There are other things we’d like to get as well, but maybe the tea shop delivers to other countries. I have developed a craving for Ahmad’s strawberry and apple teas. And I found out that they have raspberry tea as well. At least Denmark sells my other favorite tea brand Pickwick. They have a delicious strawberry tea too. Can you tell that I love strawberries? 🙂 There’s also the kind of candy you take for a sore throat. We call them throat tablets. There are several different flavors but we prefer strawberry.

This must be getting boring so I guess I’ll stop now. How are you hanging in there, my friends and followers?

Posted in Other

Long, boring post

Being stuck inside most of the time, I’ve grown increasingly bored. Normally, I’d at least help tidy up, do the dishes and best of all (no irony) do the laundry. However, since the house isn’t the least bit childproof, I have to stick to my son like a leech. Poor thing, he’s probably tired of me by now. All I can do is, once in a while, keep an eye on what’s going on online. The problem is, whatever is going on, it’s not going on in my feeds and on my dashboards… 🙂

Under other circumstances, we’d be exploring our new neighborhood, but as it is, we can just go to the shops a few times a week. We try to go outside as little as possible. There’s a patio outside but it’s not very nice. You get the impression every neighbor can see us there. It’s also a bit bare. Everything’s very monochrome. Mainly grey with a bit of black here and there. When were at Lidl we were eying an orange tree longingly, but it’s quite expensive and right now, we need to keep an eye on our expenses. There were also violets or pansies in a big lilac pot. They were very pretty and not as expensive. We might get those later, we’ll see. I also want more indoor plants. I have a few I had to leave behind but at the moment, with the borders closed, we can’t get to them. I’m keeping my fingers crossed they won’t die. My lovely Monstera Deliciosa that I got for my confirmation died a few years ago, but at least one of its ‘children’ was still alive when my sister was last back at the house. We might get something for the patio, to get more privacy and some chairs and a table so we sit outside some time in the evenings.

We absolutely need to get more toys for the children. They’re not even allowed to play in any playground so we haven’t even gone out looking for one.

No matter how inconvenient this is, I know there are others much worse off and we just need to think of them and be grateful we’re doing as well as we are.

I’ve already done a bit of exploring in Second Life, so now I’m probably going to look for a concert and try listening to some music.

We took the opportunity of reconnecting with a second cousin that I haven’t met since we were both six. I sincerely hope he doesn’t remember that occasion, because I wasn’t very nice to him then. LOL. It seems not. He seems nice, but we don’t have anything in common.

I also decided to try to log on to my email accounts. Sadly, it turns out I haven’t logged into one of my main accounts for more than six months and they are deleting it, if they haven’t already done so. Even if it isn’t completely gone, they can’t reverse the process or let me get the same address again. 😦 So I decided to get a similar one on my other account. No use crying over spilled milk, even though I almost did. Sigh.

I should try to save and then archive my old homepages/blogs and start new ones. No one will be interested in my ancient history. I’ll probably change the name too. I’ll see. We will probably keep our fan fiction up until further notice but it’s not that simple unfortunately. We’ll need to change things over quite a bit. Our personal blogs will be easier. I would love to have somewhere to just ‘chat’. I have a private blog where I gush over all the cute things my children and nieces have done, that I promised I wouldn’t spam my followers with. 🙂 It used to be where I was whining about my life but nowadays I find that I mainly post about the children. I was born to be a mother.

Posted in Other

Stuck

Now that we’re basically stuck, I’ve been thinking about how most of my life has been spent wishing I was somewhere else. Then for a short while I really felt at home and loved my life. Then we had to move from our first and best apartment and since then nothing has been going right.

Now dreaming about going somewhere else suddenly doesn’t work. I can’t go anywhere. When all this is over, I’ll try to make sure I end up somewhere I’m really, really happy. If that’s even possible at this time in my life. At least I have the children. They help a lot.

Though I know I shouldn’t complain. Many people are a lot worse off. No one in my family belongs to a risk group. We’re in a safe and relatively comfortable place and getting enough to eat and drink. It’s just so dull. There’s nothing to do except pick up after the children. Which I have to do all the time, so I guess I can keep busy, even if I’m not exactly having fun doing that.

Maybe I can take this time to tell my friends that we’re moving into another quite cool place now. It’s a 17th century building that was used for storage in the past. Now it’s been transformed into our very own little town house. It’s got two floors and its own little backyard. All that’s missing is a pretty view. All we can see are some rather plain buildings and a parking lot. (At least so I’ve been told by my sister. I haven’t actually seen it myself yet, for obvious reasons). It’s a rental, but these things still cost a bundle, here in Denmark. We’ll see how long we can stick around. Once we’re free to travel we’ll have to settle things back in Sweden. Move our stuff, sell the house etc. For now we’ll just sit tight and thank the powers that be for IKEA. 🙂 And a store that seems to be almost next door. So no long walks to do the shopping. Though actually, we’re going to try to order food for the duration of this weird time of isolation.