Summer’s Christmas Eve

Midsummer – a tradition and a long weekend in Sweden after or on the 21st of June, the longest day of the year.

Originally I was supposed to travel this weekend, but life had other plans. I stayed home instead and didn’t go to the country side either, since the weather wasn’t that great (or – typical for Midsummer, in other words).

A lot of free time all of a sudden! Luxury! Lots of it spent on the Brit’s Brexit decision yesterday, but that is another story.

I started yesterday with a run around town of about 5k.
During that run I realised how similar Midsummer in Sweden is to Christmas in Sweden. Just warmer, although not necessarily. There have been years with the same temperature like 7 plus on both, Christmas Eve and Midsummer Eve. Greener, though, and definitely loads of light obviously.

Anyway, the town was empty. Silent and empty, just like after 3pm on Christmas Eve, when everybody watches Donald Duck. I saw the occasional group of family members meeting and greeting, with bags containing small gifts and definitely some beer and wine. But that was it. And the situation didn’t change much during the day. A very small amount of traffic. Few people about.
Thinking about it, during the entire eight years I  have been living in Sweden, I always spent Midsummer somewhere else. Either travelling, or with family and friends, or at least on the country side where it is quiet anyway.

So it took me eight years to realise how very similar these two feasts actually are. Apart from the amount of light and green in nature. It is even largely the same sort of food, you knew that, didn’t you?

Well, I continue enjoying my nice, quiet and relaxing long weekend in Norrköping then.

Wishing you a good one!ūüôā

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Midsummer morning run

Aside

This morning it was time to take a run around town, about 5 to 6 k. It was beautiful sunshine, and Norrk√∂ping showed it’s best side.

I stopped for taking some pictures at Carl Johan park, not far away from the railway station. The annual cacti plantation was almost ready, only a few rows were missing. It is Sweden’s oldest cacti plantation, a nice tradition, especially for cacti nerds like me.

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Happy Midsummer, everyone!

Rainy discovery run

Originally, the plan was to go to the country side this weekend. The weather gods convinced us to stay at home, though, and instead take care of other stuff, inside.

I started yesterday by going for a 7,5 km morning run. And it became one of the nice discovery runs. When approaching home again (by then it was pissing down with rain), I went past the old water reservoir tower, close to the football arena in Norrköping.

About¬†five¬†years ago the tower had been converted to mini-flats for students. There are 12 floors with four small flats per floor, and you can go up to the roof top as well. Usually you need a door code for getting in there,¬†which I obviously don’t have.

Yesterday, though, all entrance doors were wide open. I didn’t meet or see anyone, so after a bit of hesitating I took the elevator up to the roof top in order to see what it looks like.

I got rewarded with beautiful views over a rainy Norrköping. The tenants have a nice communal outside space with two barbecue grills up there, a dream for students at least in my eyes. Can I be twenty years younger, get a flat there and join the party??

Here are some pictures of yesterday’s mini adventure.

Tax disc art!

What to do with old tax discs you collected? Well, try making a collage out of them. It could work out better than expected.

This one I made from Hugo’ s  (see Elisatravels.com for more)

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What did you do with tax disc holders, apart from throwing them away?

Coasters should work out nicely as well… we’ll see what I do with them when the collage is getting boringūüėČ

#50 of #blogg100

Back to the roots.

To the grass roots. When stretching and doing some strength exercises after running.

Grass roots premier for the season today!

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Just above 8k tonight, with an average of 6.52 minutes per kilometre. Pretty cool for snail low pulse running!

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Have a great Friday!

 

#48 of #blogg100

 

Awareness.

Are you aware about your surroundings? Do you look thoroughly when changing lanes while driving a car? Or when stepping out of your door?

Or do you belong to the people who text or facebook while driving a car, while riding a bicycle or while walking?

If so, do you feel safe?

I then should probably ask instead “Do you feel lucky?” (to talk a bit of Dirty Harry)

Cos it is just a question of time until you get involved in an accident if you lack awareness.

Best case you walk into another person, also occupied with his/her smartphone, not paying attention and knowing what going on around you.

Worst case you walk into a car whose driver is facebooking while driving – that could end not so lucky…

To be aware of what’s going on around you is¬†a life saver.

So, please, watch out! For your own sake and the sake of others around you.

If you want to get better at being aware of what’s going on around you, a recommendation is to watch the clip below about the William Aprill awareness exercise.

Yep, as you can see, basic martial arts principles can also be applied and are useful in many situations of everyday life.

Be aware, stay safe! 

 

#47 of #blogg100

Rain run.

I was tired all day today and really forced my way out to run. It became about 6,5 km.

Weather? No, let’s really not talk about it. But if you have to know – grey, rain and 7 centigrade plus, feeling like no more than 3 degrees plus…

And of course, Murphy strikes again, as soon as you put one step out of the door, it starts pouring down with rain.

But which runner is defeated by rain?! Ha!! Off you go, running in the rain, glasses halfway steamed up from your body temperature, and the rest of the eyesight wiped away by rain drops. Blind running would also have been a great title for this post!ūüėČ

However, in the end the stubbornness wins and even gets rewarded – by sunshine during the stretching session! Win!!!!

Win against the elements, and against the tiny little devil inside wanting you to stay lazy at home on the sofaūüėČ .

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View from the sit-up-exercise-park-bench!

 

#45 of #blogg100

Last upholstery session for spring season

Yesterday was the last upholstery session before summer. Summer? Well, temperature wise it feels more like winter right now, but that is a totally different topic.

This is how far I got with chair number 2 of my antique chairs:

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All the springs are set and fixed, and the first layer of thick padding (Cocos fibre) is covered by the fabric.

Yesterday it was the “gym-session”. That means that you have the chair lifted and that you try to make stitches with¬†the thread that holds the padding. The stitches have to be set in a way that they do not interfere with neither the springs or any¬†other threads, like the ones holding the springs. One uses a long needle with double¬†tips for that, so that you can go back up with the needle without having to turn it. Which would be practically almost impossible, with springs all around.

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Once the thread is set, one tightens it. One works backward and pulls the thread tight, in order to get a very firm padding as the first padded layer on top of the chair’s springs. One repeats the tightening process as often as needed, I think in this case it took about seven times until there was not much more to tighten.

After that, one fastens the fabric using a staple gun onto the wooden construction of the chair. I did the back s well as the sides.

The next step will be to add some more padding in the front, and then to fasten that part as well. The front also needs to be sewn in a special way.

I will keep you posted!

 

#44 of #blogg100

Morning run.

Worked during the weekend, today (Monday) I am off work. Since it was sunshine, cold, though, I decided to start the day with a decent morning run. 8.75 km it became. Not bad!

No funny events on the way, though, apart from a pidgeon choir on the lamp posts – they really tried to sound exactly the same at the same time. Almost in stereo!

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Hope you had a great Monday!

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#stretchingpic

 

#43 of #blogg100

 

Interesting. Cuvée René.

Interesting indeed. I thought that a Friday night would call for some more adventurous beer tasting, rather than buying the usual brands one already knows.

Tonight’s choice fell for Cuv√©e Ren√©, apparently a world-famous and world’s best Gueuze.
The label in the shop marketed it with a dry, fresh taste and a touch of orange peel.

P1020554Well then, let’s buy it and try it. Luxurious it felt, with the little golden wrap, and not to mention the price tag of like 5 ¬£ per bottle (yep, crazy, I know, but after all it is Friday!!!).

Let’s open it! Hang on a second, what’s this??¬†Double layers?! Maybe it was Champagne hidden as beer? (Which would also explain the price tag?)P1020553Never mind, opened it, no problem with the right tools at hand.

Poured it into the glass. It behaved like beer at least.

Tasted it.

Well.

Interesting.

Interesting indeed.

Well, let’s say this much. The fresh taste cannot be denied, and neither can the zesty, citrus sensation on your tongue. VERY dry indeed.

We learnt this much tonight, Gueuze is definitely a special kind of drink. Neither beer, nor champagne, somewhere in-between, it seems. If you trust what your tongue messages to the brain. All ingredients as beer, though, when one reads the label. And when now reading about it on Wikipedia, it is indeed called “Brussels Champagne”! So the impression it made on us wasn’t entirely wrong! Very special. Very… tongue curling. Somehow. Face twisting as well.

As a good old German saying goes “Sauer macht lustig” (sour turns you happy – don’t ask me where this derives from, though!) – that was truly matching tonight’s Gueuze testing session.

We had loads of fun with involuntarily making funny faces, and we managed to empty both bottles. Into ourselves, not into the sink. That would have been a waste of alcohol. And far too expensive.

Oh yes, remarkably enough the alcohol doesn’t feel at the start – at all. It comes creeping up on you with a nice delay. So if you like lemonade with little or no sugar, you can drink Gueuze just like that. With the difference that the alcohol hits you a teeny-weeny bit later.

Like me right now.

Skål!

Bit of telly now (hopefully not passing out asleep on the sofa), and then bed. I have to work tomorrow. Maybe I should buy some of these bottles for lunch … interesting….

ūüėČ

#42 of #blogg100 (“meaning of life” post)

 

 

Running experience on a sunny evening

In the evenings I usually manage to run longer than on a¬†morning. So today it were just above 12k on the “running clock”. Spontaneously as well, since I planned to “only” run 10k.

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As usual, there are the little things that make you laugh and glad during a run – if you have an eye on your environment and see things, that is. My highlight of the day was a young couple in their twenties that overtook me at some point. My pace was pottering pace, slow, in other words, really slow and relaxed.

The sun was shining on the young ladies running tights, and one could say that the fabric wasn’t exactly hiding everything beneath. On the contrary. Without effort one could identify a black string tanga, and of course the (and admittedly nicely shaped) moon of hers. The young man obviously didn’t mind the sight either, since he was either beside her, or just about behind her behind.

At some point they fell back for checking the running app on the ladies phone, and I overtook them again. Then they took up the pace again and one could hear her saying “I think we do now as it says, and it says 400m in slow tempo.” Said that and overtook me again, with quite some speed. So, slow is definitely relative, just so you know!

Anyway, I should thank them, since they made me laugh, and thus gave me extra energy. They also showed me a new part of the route, which made me run longer in the end. Today is so far the longest I have run outside a competition, and although I felt the body afterwards, I could have continued. That is quite a nice feeling, given the fact that today the letter with the Göteborgsvarvet-information came Рwith starting group and time.

Let’s hope everything continues going¬†to plan with training! I am a bit worried about my friend, though, who I am supposed to take up this challenge with, since she got a few problems with foot and back. On the other hand, we still have a month left, so maybe (hopefully!) things will be alright.

Good night!

#41 of #blogg100

Running experience in the morning

This beautiful Tuesday I started with a 6k morning run in a relaxed tempo. Usually one doesn’t meet anybody one knows this early in the morning, however,¬† today was different.

On the way out I met a nice bloke I used to train with, and we exchanged a few words. He was on his way to work. On the way back I saw another mate from training, riding his mountain bike in a Kamikaze speed, most likely on his way to work, and fully concentrated trying to avoid tram rails on the street.

Fun experience to see two people of the same training group on one’s morning round, that early.
The day continued in a positive way, at work and with my upholstery group.

Bed time now. Nightnight!

#40 of #blogg100

Weekend.

Gone. Almost. And we did a lot. That despite being tired almost all weekend, at least on my part.

Once again one should emphasize that cleaning a flat does indeed qualify as exercise. At least if you springtime-clean it, as we did. You know, dedusting all the shelves with books and so on. After that, we needed a brisk walk in the halfway sunny evening weather yesterday. Cleaning our “dust-lungs”….

Today we had a lie-in, until our laundry time started. After that it was time to go to the motorcycle garage. We managed to establish that Hugo, the Moto Guzzi v50III most likely might be in for a set of new shock absorbers. A test ride needs to be done to get that confirmed, though.

After garage, another brisk weekend walk, and I can say that I am awake sort of only now. Some good food and a glass of red will probably put me back into sofa and sleeping mode, though.¬†And I don’t mind that.

Tonight’s dish, in case anybody’s interested: Gratin with cod, spinach, lime, chili, tomatoes and cheese. On the side there will be garlic bread. The meal can (and will) be accompanied by a glass of red or a pint of our choice.

Skål!

#39 of #blogg100