Monday, September 30, 2019

goodbye september, hello october 2019

lego wall in västerås, sweden, september 2019

I wish my one month silence in blog was due to fantastic and dreamy news, but alas September turned out to be a pretty sh*tty month.

The fun and inspiring things I've also done were overshadowed by the fact that The Job that was truly dreamy on paper, with a great interview and some anxious yet rare I-know-this-is-mine-feeling waiting turned out to be a really disappointing process. Simply a short "we chose someone else" without any explanation to the whys (which is standard procedure in Sweden, at least when you're one of the few they chose from, in these case three persons). So I asked, with no reply. Which says a lot about the company culture.

As I mentioned, the ad was basically a carbon copy to what I'm looking for and what I'm offering. The position was as head of communication in a company working with sustainable innovation. It screamed my name. Didn't get it. Was truly disappointed, since every job I've applied for since I decided this is what I must focus on now have been good enough, but not great. This was great, on paper. The reality was another story.

And even if I had good advance information which gave some warning signals, I also know different personalities react to different things and I prefer to talk to people and experience things myself. Turned out the information I got was spot on, alas. And the ad most certainly didn't convey the truth of the company.

What I learnt though, is that THIS is just the position and kind of company I must pursue. However that might be easier said than done since I've never seen an ad, or heard of a similar company/position, before. So many boxes were ticked, on paper. The reality was something very different.

And after getting the news I honestly felt so low, that only the thought of picking myself up, focus, feeling inspired enough to continue looking, got be exhausted. I don't want to feel this jaded, but right now that's how it is.

But the hilarious, endearing incident that happened before the interview still makes me giggle. I bought a coffee (in my KeepCup to go of course) and the barista was extra chatty. And somehow I ended up telling him I was on my way to an interview and bought coffee for extra oumph. He just stared at me and spontaneously said "But you don't need any extra oumph, you're full of oumph already!". I laughed and thanked him for both compliment and coffee. Even if, despite my built-in oumph, I obviously didn't impress at the interview - or who knows, it might have been too much of a good thing.

The illusive search continues.

On the last day of September I began a new little web project gig, with people I trust and like a lot- This will be fun and hopefully just as enjoyable as work and collaborations should be. And not least, as things currently are, good to focus on nice work matters instead of dwelling over things that weren't meant to be. And seriously, I'm too good at what I do to dwell on what I possibly were deemed to lack at the interview. The company was clearly not worth my time, energy or work. And that's that.

Even if this search process is incredibly draining, and I do wish there would be more positive lessons learnt instead of the opposite.

On the positive September side, in a few words -

Västerås day trip. Turned out that the train ride there from my home took less than one hour, the equivalent of how long it takes to get into Stockholm city. It's nice to live in the outermost suburbs, Sweden seems closer than just Stockholm somehow. Spent the day there, on one of the last few warm and sunny Indian summer days. Walking around the city, which is much nicer than I remembered from the plethora of cat shows I've attended years ago. A lovely museum visit with an exhibition called Age Rich, about old age, all the experiences and wisdom we as a society don't care much about. As youth is celebrated and ageism rules. It was a soul soothing day on so many levels.

Vegan cooking class. Yes, it was finally time and it was lovely, unpretentious and the food turned out great. There were 15 of us and I was definitely the most experienced in vegan cooking. But I still learnt some tricks and tips. Well spent evening.

14th Blogoversary. September 8. Missed it completely. But there you are, happy blogoversary dear blog, thank you for being my little personal public room to share, sort and rant still.

Broken arm anniversary. September 18. A year ago I had a broken arm and life was a new kind of rough. But I got myself through that too. Some days the arm and wrist feels pretty normal. Others it can be a bit sore. But well, even if'll never be 100% as it was before the unfortunate cat related accident, I'm still ever so grateful I said a firm no to an operation, with all the risks that would have entailed and of course no guarantees for a 100% outcome.

Downton Abbey movie premiere. It was a nice couple of hours spent on Friday the 13th. But you might as well wait for the DVD or streaming.

Inspiration lunch on Digital behaviours. Those lunches at a Stockholm book store including a delicious vegan salad are most always a great thing. This time the authors were very entertaining as well.

World Clean-up Day. This was a more infuriating that good event. The organisation Håll Sverige Rent (Keep Sweden Clean) really made an engaging mark during my childhood. Kids and grown-ups alike in general back then, knew how to throw trash in bins and keep the streets and nature clean. Schools and companies were involved in regular campaigns. Now the NGO is doing a really crappy job with visibility and marketing.

My mum and I were out for 3-4 hours, filled 6-8 bags with trash, in an area that wasn't that large. Noone else out and about picked trash and noone we talked to knew that it was World Clean-up Day. Imagine if everyone that attended the Climate Marches also picked up a bag of litter, that would make a huge difference.

In the end we were too tired to pick up more trash, the absolute majority being cigarette butts - idiot smokers are obviously careless, selfish idiots on so many levels - but I felt so ashamed walking past all the littering. I'm not the one littering, but feeling so ashamed of how the human race have polluted our one and only planet and continue doing so by being ignorant and stupid.

Reading. Finished 5 books in September. And begun reading 3 more. So grateful I at least haven't lost my reading mojo amidst the lack of mojo in other areas of my life currently.

Decided to start my October with a new hair colour. This time I went with Bright Red, from Maria Nila. I can see it'll be very visible in daylight. Unfortunately I got a bit too much of the colour on my forehead and on my ears too. That'll be an interesting new look for me.

September, writing things down I realise you held some great stuff too, but the early days disappointment has still been covering you like a big, wet, suffocating blanket. So thank you for the good days, but really, I'm very glad to say bye bye.

Dear, October, darling birthday month, can you pretty pretty please bring 31 days of happiness and at least a few of immense joy!? So much gratitude in advance.

Saturday, August 31, 2019

farewell august, welcome september 2019

the epitome of happy shoes, august 2019 (vegan sneakers)

Let's try something new. As I fear my computer is getting worse - I should probably be grateful it has worked reasonably well, but quite slow, after its crash in May - I'll post this blog-post little by little, update it slowly today and tomorrow. Slow blogging and no instant gratification. So please, stop reading now and welcome back. New little "chapters" will be added continuously over the weekend.

Kvistaberg Observatory, Bro, Sweden, August 31, 2019 -

August has been a lovely month in general. And the weather wonderful, as the rest of our Swedish summer this year. I would lie if I said I wasn't afraid it will only get worse from here on, so many scary tipping points all over the world this year. But for now, I'm grateful for our amazing summer, and I've savoured every possible detail from it.

Kvistaberg Observatory, Bro, Sweden, August 31, 2019 -

Rounded the month off with a special outing. Visiting the Kvistaberg Observatory, located in the neighbouring suburb but rarely opened to the public. This weekend there's the annual Art Run in the municipality were local artists of very varied talent level get to show their pieces at various places. And the observatory (owned and operated by Uppsala University) is opened for viewings too.

Kvistaberg Observatory, Bro, Sweden, August 31, 2019 -

Despite extremely poor information and communication regarding how to get there with public transport (because as usual everyone is suppose to to have access to or wanting to go by car...) and its opening hours, we managed to get there and after waiting for over one hour (alongside a bunch of other visitors) someone turned up and gave a half-hearted talk. But it was cool to finally see the place. There are three observatories and telescopes on the premises, but we only got see the youngest, which too has been discontinued alas.

Jane Bark exhibition at Volvo Studios, Stockholm, Sweden, August 2019

It's nice to do something special, have a little outing, feed the mind and soul something extra, on the very last day of a month. I think I need to make a little habit of it. Say farewell and thank you to the month that was.

caturday with books, tea and vegan candy, august 31, 2019

Had secretly hoped that I would finish more than 5 books (which was my monthly goal again) in August, but there have been so much other stuff occupying my life and mind, that didn't happen. But five I did, and as I've written about my long battle with lost reading mojo that's more than good enough anyway.

caturday with books, tea and vegan candy, august 31, 2019

And as I was preparing for a hygge moment finishing that last and fifth book in this glorious caturday, I suddenly realised that my old, rarely used coffee press can indeed be used for rooibos tea too. Which means I can prepare a pot of tea and drink it in one of my smaller, pretty mugs instead of always relying on the large ones. Might seem both trivial and obvious, but apparently not for me. A nice little insight to get on the very last day of summer.

rowan berries, saltsjöbaden, stockholm, sweden, august 2019 💚

Looks like my planned, let's-try-something-new-and-add-little-chapters-to-the-existing-blog-post-idea during one weekend didn't quite worked. Have too much backlog regarding the photos and feeling tired after quite a busy, but really good, week.

So, to keep it shorter than intended and save things for another post, perhaps?

Here goes short -

:: Had an intention to use more shoes with higher heels regularly. But as comfy as they are, I chose to rekindle with them on a day when I though we'd walk reasonably little just to walk softly into another heel height. Turned out to be one of those days this summer when we walked for hours. It kind of put me and my calfs off the idea of more heels in my life.

:: Went to see an exhibition on women's vote in Sweden, it's 100 years old now. Only 100 years. And still there such a long way to go for true equal rights, even in Sweden. What women and girls suffer through all over the world in less democratic countries even today, no wonder the whole planet is in such peril. The lack of women's rights, human rights as well as animal rights are closely connected with climate change and a disregard for sustainability issues, as everything is connected. Of which we are reminded every single day, yet sadly so little, by comparison, is done to change that.

:: Have had some really lovely encounters with vegan pizza, burgers, sticky chocolate cake, chocolate mousse pastry and truly magical pralines. And I've bought some great artisan bread from various (new to me) hipster bakeries. Which is a category that has truly blossomed in Sweden these past, I'd say, 10 years. But I'm not complaining, great bread should be easy to find. I really really don't like massproduced supermarket bread with all its unhealthy additives. Everything is better when carefully and skillfully produced in smaller quantities, with fewer and healthier ingredients.

my life in cherry red, august 2019 -

:: I had another encounter with a jar of Maria Nila colour refresh, this time in the colour Cherry Red. And it worked great with my grombre, just like the Pink Pop I tried in April. So it looks like blues and purples don't work at all for me, but red hues do. It's really difficult to get the nuance to look right in a photo, but this will give you an idea.

my life in cherry red, august 2019 -

And after a couple of washes (it's suppose to last 5-10 washes I believe) it looks like this. But nb, the main thing of this photo is that I woke up like this. It was such a surprisingly good curly and totally effortless hair day. Which is a rare rare RARE thing.

:: I've also done my first little dabble with genealogy. Only got 3 generations back on both mum and dad's side, it's so easy to get sidetracked... But I'm looking forward to do some more digging. And there are so many resources online these days, and in Sweden several authorities offer services for free.

:: Attended a super interesting panel discussion on Can fashion be sustainable and circular economy. It was just so inspiring and though provoking and I learnt a lot of things I had no idea about. Even if I still find it so incredibly ... distasteful when they invite companies such as H&M and other fast fashion brands to discuss sustainability and how dedicated they've apparently become to that lately, despite still making dirty money polluting the environment with massproduced crap made by factory workers that aren't fairly paid. It's just such completely embarrassing greenwashing. The moderator did a great job though, not shying away from difficult questions, like they usually do.

luddkolt’s british shorthair, august 2019 ❤️ -

And last (now that I omitted things that made August into a lovely last month of summer), but far from least - I have an interview booked for this week. For a position that's honestly quite the dream job. The interesting thing is that I kind of slipped in on a benevolent banana skin through the back door via recent meetings. It just feels so very right, in every aspect. Like the job ad pretty much being a carbon copy of what I said I was looking for and offering in my recent LinkedIn article.

I'm actually very excited (as illustrated by Ågot), so dear Internetz, kindly send fabulously good vibes and positive thoughts that the meeting will be great, that we will click and match irl just as perfectly as on paper.

sonny angel on the first day of autumn 🐥🐥, september 1, 2019

Thank you from the bottom of my grateful heart, August, for being such a wonderful month. I'm sad to see you go, and with you a beautiful long summer. But you have made a lasting impact on my life, that's so very special of you.

And dear, September, you have a lot to live up to in the footsteps of your predecessor, but I'm sure you have all amazing things within your 30 days, right? Right. Welcome, welcome, welcome.

Monday, August 12, 2019

the things i do while i'm looking for my new dream job

Millesgården, Stockholm, August 1 2019

Stockholm Pride has been. And apart from the love is love, kindness and equality vibe that's in teh air during that week, I always enjoy taking rainbow coloured pictures near water. This year we were at magical Millesgården for a really sweet exhibition with illustrator Lena Andersson's adorable drawings and work. A perfect place for a little rainbow gang to pose.

lena andersson exhibition at millesgården, stockholm, sweden, july 2019

The exhibition is on until September 22 and well worth a visit.

lena andersson exhibition at millesgården, stockholm, sweden, july 2019

Car-pooled to the retrieval plant the other week. It was such a bliss to finally get rid of years of broken old stuff that's too heavy to take on the bus. I should make this a regular thing. Not that I got that much heavy stuff to get rid off currently. But a good cleanse of stuff in general is liberating.

luddkolt’s british shorthair, august 2019 -

The cats were less than happy though, since I threw away one of their favourite chairs (nasty old thing). These were the scenes after I had pulled it apart, making it ready for throwing away. As if there would never again be a better place to lie on.

vegan food at home, july 2019 -

The season for cherries seem to get shorter by the year, but I have enjoyed the reasonably priced ones I've seen. Ah, cherries, on my top three of best fruit and berries in the whole wide world, alongside raspberries and pineapple. Closely followed my mango.

kånken sling, july 2019

I was so excited when I saw that Fjällräven had turned their beloved Kånken into a little messenger bag (the big one made in collaboration with Acne last year has alas leather details). For those days when your dress doesn't have pockets (which is such drawback, I know, but still it happens) and your good with a smaller bag or wear it with the Kånken to have your most essentials close at hand. (The pretty red bag from Matt & Nat is of another style, for other days and occasions...).

kånken sling, july 2019

Granted I thought it would be the same size as the Kånken Mini, but as you can se the Kånken Sling is much smaller. I deliberated if it was a keeper or not, but I decided it was. Even if it isn't big enough to fit both umbrella, sunglasses, a big wallet (I need to downside to a mini one) and all the extras I usually carry in my backpack. And a keepcup is definitely out of the question. So either you have it for very special occasions, with the backpack or with a cotton tote bag.

luddkolt’s british shorthair, august 2019 -

One interesting sighting of this summer - which has been so so much better than last year, thank goodness for that, at least a little grace from global warming effects - is that there have been so much butterflies, as well as (too many) mosquitos and flies. And since the mosquitos lovez me... But at least, touch wood, the tics have been very few and far apart. And last week I got my final TBE-shot, so now I'm fully vaccinated, hooray.

It was a petty costly affair though, and given the devastating consequences of getting TBE, it's very strange indeed that the usual Swedish health care doesn't cover these costs too. There are so many more unnecessary things it covers, it's baffling.

old meets new in sigtuna, sweden, august 2019

Remember the sunglass clip-ons I got for one of my new glasses back in February? Well, for some reason, somewhere, I must have misplaced them recently and I can't find them (yet, as the search is still on). So I thought I might pop by the optician and ask if I could buy a new pair. A simple plastic design, as they were included in the very reasonable price for my glasses I couldn't imagine a replacement pair would be very expensive. Boy, was I wrong, the price would be 1/3 of what my glasses cost. Thanks but no thanks. Seriously.

So I'll keep on looking for my misplaced ones, and really, just a quick google search I find the equivalent much more reasonably priced. There are many things worth paying for, while others are just ridiculously overpriced.

books and cats, august 2019 -

I posted a list of 12 (old and new) books I recommend for summer (or year around really) reading on LinkedIn the other week. On which these two appears, the above book is by much loved Swedish artist, painter, feminist, body activist Stina Wollter (I attended a writer's talk with her in June and it was amazing). Only in Swedish, obviously, so far, but I highly recommend you read it.

books and cats, august 2019 -

And the first book in the trilogy by Sylvain Neuvel, "Sleeping Giants" had me mesmerized. Can't wait to read the other two.

blunt cut, august 2018

Last week I was inspired by pic A to do an even shorter blunt cut. But the result turned out like pic B. And all of you Swedes who grew up with the TV-show Hedvig & Helge know what I mean, the rest of you have to google. The cut was also a bit shorter than I had planned, as I was trying to multitask by talking on the phone at the same time. Yes, true story.

blunt cut, august 2018

However, after a wash and slight styling it didn't look too bad. And the funniest thing of it all is that after years of being super-reluctant to cut my hair short, and having been pretty sad when I let my hairdresser cut it shorter than usual, is that I basically don't miss it at all. And I can still make a tiny ponytail, if I should so wish.

maria nila #vegan haircare, august 2019

And I got myself five little jars with the vegan Maria Nila colour refresh. As I am curious if any of them is as great, or as crappy, as the pink resp blue colours I've tried before, I only went for small jars instead of the bigger bottles of the previous two.

I tried the Lavender one the other day, but alas it added only a very faint hint of colour to my sun-bleached grombre hair. But it was a nice nourishing hair pak at least. Fingers crossed the next colour will be as great as the Pink Pop.

vegan food stockholm and suburbs, august 2019 -

Realised it's really quite easy to use public transport to get from here to Sigtuna. It doesn't have to be more time-consuming than 1 hour and 20 minutes from door to door (and if you didn't have waiting time between train and buses it would be even shorter). So I had a little fne outing with little mum last week, with fika at Tant Brun and a stroll around town. I'm looking forward to the fact that it will now be a no biggie to get there for the annual Christmas fair.

More on Sigtuna and its history as the oldest town in Sweden, in this old blog post.

old meets new in sigtuna, sweden, august 2019

On my above visit to Millesgården I was smitten by this handmade glass ring with coloured water. It wasn't easy to chose colour but in the end I went for a pink + pink one. It's such a nice summer statement ring. From Pylones.

clothes #ootd #shoeperdiem july 2019 -

After weeks of deliberation I also decided to get myself this amazing pre-autumn classic shirt dress. It haz pockets. Obviously from Marimekko with its Unikko pattern. (I admit to a slight addiction.) And isn't the pale pink-beige colour combination adorable? It will look great both on cooler summer days with a tan, as well as colourful stockings and cardigans come autumn and winter. For many years.

it’s a boy! benjamin, my sponsored bull at animal sanctuary gotlands djurfristad 💚💚💚, august 2019

I've also become a sponsor to this beautiful boy named Benjamin. A young bull at Swedish animal sanctuary Gotlands Djurfristad. May he live a long and happy life there with his friends. As opposed to all the billions of his species that are needlessly oppressed, abused and killed for food we don't need.

looking for my new dream job, august 2019

And that was a few things I've done lately while I'm still looking for my dream job - and now there's even a reversed job ad up as an article on LinkedIn on that. And if you care to like, share or do something other positive and amazing to spread the word on my quest, that would needlessly to say be much appreciated. Onwards and upwards.

Now I'm looking forward to the vegan cooking class this week, that will be so much fun I'm sure!

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

goodbye july, hello august 2019

luddkolt’s british shorthair and books, july 2019 -

July 2019 - the month I finished not only my goal of 5 books, but 8. Hooray. Plus am a few chapters into even more books. And yes again, the more I read the less I write obviously.

That said. Apart from books what has the last few weeks of July been like than? For the most part very hot, debilitatingly, depressingly so. But at last the temperature dropped drastically yesterday - with unusually low temperatures for the season instead, which are also climate change caused of course. But at least you can breath. And sleep.

luddkolt’s british shorthair and books, july 2019 -

I got a general letter from my Dr Dentist thanking me for the years as is patient, but he is now going to retire and his practice is sold to another dentist. It was quite a shock, didn't realise he'd reach that age, he doesn't look like it. But I suppose, since I have been seeing him since I was a kid, it's no surprise... I will now have to look for a new dentist for my annual checkups, and as his skills was the only reason I did those 2 hours single trip commute to the other side of town I will have to try and find one much closer to home, from recommendations.

Finding good doctors and dentists (and not least veterinarians) you trust is no mean feat. I guess I've been spoilt really, with my dentist.

Powerful illustration of ’More people in Sweden are choosing vegetarian options’, July 2019

On the subject of doctors, I accompanied my mother to the hospital for a check-up last week and read this article in one of their magazines in the waiting room. About more and more Swedes going vegetarian and vegan. It was illustrated by one of the most powerful images I've ever seen. It is this simple, with one hand you choose life, health, the planet, the other one is just needless pain and suffering for innocent beings, and for the planet we all share.


Went on a day trip to university town Uppsala with little mum. Some years back they extended the commuter train lines to Arlanda airport and the Uppsala, making it much easier to get there, but also much less charming than taking a proper train. The commuter train ticket prices are ridiculously high for those extra miles though, so even if it's a nice little trip it's pretty costly I'd say.

Anyway, we arrived early and began to slowly saunter to the city centre. An hour after our arrival I tripped on those darn cobblestone streets and fell slap-bang on knees and hands. The first thing I cried was "oh no, hope the phone didn't break!" - when it would have been worse if I re-broke my hand obviously. It was pretty painful, if not much blood and I felt both dizzy and nauseous for about an hour afterwards and had to rest on a bench. Luckily it passed and we continued up to the cathedral, had a vegan nicecream and continued with walking around town.

clothes #ootd #shoeperdiem july 2019 -

This is me after the incident, with the nicecream in sight. I may have several super-powers, but the least pleasant one is my inclination to trip, slip and fall when least expected. Even if it, touch wood, doesn't happen often, it happens regularly. And the amount of scars on my knees tell a long story. And obviously the tale of two broken arms, one in my twenties (the cat bathing incident) and the other one last year (the cat vomit incident).

I was pretty sore for about a week, partly still is, my right hand and my left knee took most of the beating. And I had seriously huge bruises. Still am a bit tender, but it feels a bit better everyday, thankfully. It could have been so much worse.

vegan food at home, july 2019 -

We visited a really lovely tea shop - with cat tea, Uppsala is the hometown of the famous author of the children's books about Pelle Svanslös, Pelle No Tail - and had a great vegan buffet late lunch before it was time to head back home. I so enjoy these unpretentious day trips, with no particular musts and shoulds, just a bit of sightseeing and something great to eat in towns you've been to before. Hopefully there'll be time for a few more day trips in August.

vegan food at home, july 2019 -

In August I'm also attending a vegan cooking class. It's not that I don't cook a lot already, obviously, but I thought it would be fun to mingle a bit, get new contacts and pick up new tricks and ideas. The evening will take place at a small vegan restaurant that mainly focus on raw food and catering.

clothes #ootd #shoeperdiem july 2019 -

Remember the job interview that was re-schedule for August? Got an email last week saying the position was filled now. In the middle of the holiday season. When they said they couldn't do interviews until the second week of August. If it had been at another time of the year I could've understand that when they found a good match they stopped all interviews. But not at this time, high summer, that's just blatant unprofessional behaviour. And that's just what I told them.

So incredibly tired of all these unprofessional, incompetent recruitment companies and clueless HR departments. But I guess this learning experience, as jaded as it's getting me, is simply a part on my quest for the Dream Job with my kind of people. Onwards and upwards.

clothes #ootd #shoeperdiem july 2019 -

I got myself a stylish rain poncho. A garment which probably only Marimekko and the Unikko pattern would entice me to do. But then the heavy rains stopped and I haven't used it yet. But I was so tired about getting soaked despite umbrella, when it was windy and heavy rain fell. So hopefully this will be a very good thing come rain next.

welcome hedgehog 2019 💚, july 2019

Last week I welcomed Mr/s Hedgehog 2019. A fairly big one and so far just one. Love how the cats are still happy and curious to see them. If my memory serves me right this is the 12th year I'm honoured to host the Hedgehog DropInn in my garden.

This book ’Scenes from the heart’ by the family Ernman - Thunberg should be obligatory reading. So powerful and heartwrenching. July 2019

Of the eight July books read, I think this one was the most powerful. In all its simplicity. "Scener från hjärtat" (Scenes from the heart) is written by the family Ernman - Thunberg (yes, Greta Thunberg, her mother world-famous opera singer Malena Ernman, her father and sister). It's absolutely heartwrenching about a family in crisis, a wrecked social system and not least a world that's burning on the brink of collaps, but very few react and act accordingly. For me it was highly relatable. And for those who still think Greta isn't capable of all the amazing, inspiring things she does herself, but a puppet on a string, that's clearly and simply not true. The book should be obligatory reading for everyone.

luddkolt’s british shorthair and books, july 2019 -

Thank you, July, for every lessons learnt, the good, the bad and everything between. Good people, good food, good books and cat cuddles galore.

Welcome, August. I'm so excited to see you, beautiful, wistful, last month of summer. Please bring good news, good health and fine things, and not least, it is about high time for that much awaited, hard worked for, Dream Job now, don't you agree?

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

the only colourful person in stockholm and other july bits

örebro open art 2019, sweden -

The more I read, the less inclined I am to write apparently. And I seem to have gotten my reading mojo back in a major way. Hooray. 4 books down in July so far, soon 5 and reading 3 simultaneously.

It should be the other way around, one might think, the more your read, the more you'd feel the urge to write. If you're a writing human being that is. But as things are now, obviously I don't work that way.

So some short glimpses from my world since June 27 then -

:: A lovely lovely writer's talk with the wonderful Stina Wollter, painter, artist, writer, body activist, feminist, wempowering every day on Instagram.

"Never say you're sorry for crying, it is the caring, feeling human that will save the world"

:: Ztina continues to have bad days, good days and pretty great days. Given how few answers that have come from the countless veterinarian visits, tests and money spent I can not see that anything more enlightening can be done that would improve her life. As long as the good and pretty great days are more than the bad ones we will adjust to this life as is.

I wish there was a veterinarian nearby that was truly interested in solving the enigma, and less interested in charging hefty prices for treating symptoms without solving the problem.

:: Continuing on the path of looking for my kind of job, my kind of people. I had another interview scheduled for last week, but it was re-scheduled to August.

I got a message from a job I applied for saying "You have a really interesting CV, but we feel you're going to be more expensive than we are willing to pay. But do give us a call.". I'm too old, too experienced, too jaded to even bother with such calls, if it's not a Dream Job.

I'm also thinking a lot about the fact that all these experiences, these years as my own boss, leading myself, is it even possible for me to fit in in an organisation not in a leading role, just as a "mere" communicating employee? Am I not too independent, too eager to drive change? Too quirky?

Food for thought. Especially with all the utterly weird situations I've experienced since I started this journey of finding...

:: The annual summer substitute buses debacle is ongoing. For the at least sixth year in a row, but probably it's seven or eight. The first years we always went on holiday during those periods so I rarely had to deal with all the stress and nuisance. You loose a lot of hours commuting during these weeks. It usually takes me 50 minutes - 1 hour + from door to door to get into the city. Which is a time one is used to after all these years.

Now add about 1 hour and 15 minutes to that, single trip. And no reduced ticket prices. And noone has yet to see what kind of work is exactly done during all these weeks, everything is very elusive. I'm so grateful I don't have to commute every day.

I'm also grateful for us having a clean, safe, environmental-friendly public transport system in Sweden. That is used by everyone, no matter which social class you belong too. Sure, there is room for improvements, but it's also so very basic for a well-functioning democracy to have a well-functioning infrastructure with decent and safe public transports available for its citizens. And for the environment.

To be dependent on a car to, hopefully, get you safely from A to B, is just unhealthy, unsustainable and not least retrogressive.

:: I've had some really great lunches, with fabulous conversations. Of which a couple with the lovely Lizzy, who so kindly showed me around Heidelberg in 2016 (and can we not talk about the fact that I still have not blogged about that Schwarzwald-trip...). Currently doing a "heritage tour" in Sweden but being able to spend some treasured hours with me.

And have you noticed that with people you don't see that often, you often get more meaningful conversations, you learn more? And with learning comes gratitude for so much in your own life. We all have dark moments, despair and demons to struggle, some much more than others. Then it's good to get other perspectives, learn about other walks of life, situations, to get that deep gratitude of being where you are, have been, grown up in those circumstances you have and so forth. It's so easy, too easy, to take things for granted, to feel entitled, for many of us.

Thank you again, Lizzy. Hope it won't be three years until next time.

And thank you for coining my new fabulous name "The Only Colourful Person in Stockholm"! Yes, the Swedes are sadly well-known for being afraid of colours prefering to blend in with black clothes and other drab colours, but you already knew that, right?

örebro open art 2019, sweden -

:: Went on a lovely day trip to Örebro Open Art 2019. Love train trips (when everything is smooth and working on schedule naturally) and seeing the world swoosh by outside the window. The exhibition itself was rather disappointing, nothing wow as in the amazing big yellow rabbit of 2011, but just the same, a day well spent (and very tired feet) followed by a good, long night's sleep. A perfect day that gave me a much needed relief from my brain and thought processes.

:: We've had really hot days. but also cooler days and happy rainy days. I think the summer weather this year on these latitudes in Sweden has been pretty great and varied. And I much prefer cooler temperatures (around +20C), which allows you to breath and function as a normal human being. perhaps this year has been slightly cooler than usual, but this is also the face of global warming and after last year's hellish hot summer I'm every so grateful for this weather.

Current music crush - Joy with Bastille makes me happy.

And until next time, hopefully it won't last weeks, think about this -

örebro open art 2019, sweden -

Thursday, June 27, 2019

on the path to purpose and fulfillment

mock orange and sonnyangel, june 2019

Writing about the things I do, see and live while I'm desperately trying to change direction in life (where some days feel more desperate than others) does honestly come more and more difficult. And by changing direction I obviously mean my quest for a job in line with my passion and skills, you know, the feeling that you've finally found your kind of people, with shared values, in your kind of place.

I've apparently been looking for two years now, tentatively at first, really focused this year. And still I don't seem to be any closer to that clearly illusive thing. I know, I know, what's meant to be will be, and every detour and bumpy road is a step closer to the right place and all that. But I would be lying if I didn't admit to being seriously jaded by the process now. It's exhausting. And infuriating, frustrating et al.

I really wanted to share some great news on the job front in this post. But alas I got a no today, for a job that I would absolutely have loved. Interview went great, felt like a great match. And the feedback was, again, lovely, they'd been smittened by me and had looked into the possibility of hiring two communicators instead of one, but hadn't come up with the funds for it currently. But who knows what might happen, let's keep in contact for the future and so forth. (The one they went for had a solid environmental background, which they deemed more important.)

That's all well and good, and I'm of course grateful and happy for the words, they give warm and fuzzy feelings, but it doesn't get me out of my getting nowhere-state or pay the bills.

So, back to looking for other jobs within sustainability communications. And back to crossing fingers, toes and paws with tiny claws the right place, the right company, the right organisation and my kind of people soon will cross paths with me and there will finally be metaphorical fireworks of happy heureka.

But obviously nothing will happen for about 8 weeks now as Sweden is (in)famous for closing down during the summer months. I'll do my very best trying to enjoy the summer - we've had reasonable temperatures and glorious rains so far, touch wood that'll continue to be the Swedish summer of 2019, please. I do not envy southern Europe, I remember how horrible, awful, devastating last summer was up here in the north - and continue to better myself in various ways.

stockholm, sweden, june 2019 -

Including reading books, I might even tick the box of 5 books in June. 3,5 so far. And my big goal is of course 5 books per month June, July and August. It has been quite enjoyable so far, spending time reading more than usual. That amidst everything I've actually rekindled with my reading mojo, go figure.

norrtälje, sweden, june 2019 (vegan food 💚) -

Since the last post I've also been to my accountant for signing of the annual closing papers - and for the second year in a row she did some kind of magic with it, as far as I'm concerned. And her dog, Maya, is of course über-cute as usual.

shoe per diem and ootd, june 2019 -

I've had good meals, cooked great things, met good people, walked and talked good matters, enjoyed my summer dress, there was Midsummer (which has of course never been anything I celebrate, I only appreciate its long weekend-feature) and I got myself a snazzy little red vegan handbag from Matt & Nat. Yes I'm trying to downsize what I carry in my handbag, wish me luck with that...

Oh, and I had a brief appointment with Dr Feist, a bit of an ear issue that was easily rectified. Hadn't seen her for 6 years, since all the health nastiness of 2012/13. But it was just like we've met last month, it was so nice to see her again and we had a good chat which as usual left me in a really good mood. Imagine that every doctor's appointment made you feel like that, upbeat and positive.

årstiderna organic vegan foodbox, food ambassador, june 2019 -

Even if I'm currently feeling rather disappointed about the promising job that wasn't meant to be, and struggle with a lot of frustration, I acknowledge that June has still been a rather lovely, overall month (despite the lack of blue hair). The gorgeous scent of mock orange has been heavy in my garden, Ztina has been doing better and I'm grateful for my always happy summer wardrobe of old and new (which is a superficial thing I know, but nevertheless, clothes in fabulous colours and patterns that look and feel great have always been such a pleasure to me).

In the last shivering days of the month I'm also watching Babylon Berlin, which is a very enjoyable for many reasons. It makes me miss Berlin even more, but I'm also ever so grateful I'm living here and now and not in the 1920ies. And I have a serious crush on "Zu Asche, zu Staub", magic.

This will most likely be the last post for the month of June, so thank you so much, sweet June, for all the valuable lessons you've given, for the sun and the rain, and for the treasured time to read. Another month older, another month wiser.

årstiderna organic vegan foodbox, food ambassador, june 2019 -
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