...because you thought Sweden was Switzerland!

Monday, July 30, 2012

July, she will fly


I guess I better write something for the month of July. My mom is complaining that she hasn't seen any pictures from any of the things I've been doing this month. Patience, mom, they're getting here!

But first: I got a sudden impulse for writing here again because of my frustration over Facebook. Why in the world must I change to a Timeline Profile against my will so that Facebook “can help me share my story”? At the same time, it tells me to to rank and delete the stories I want people to see or not to see on the Timeline Profile, and rank my friends so I can choose what to share with whom on this Profile. Talk about putting users to work so they can “help me share my story”. It doesn't make sense.

This brings me to what I think is still superior about blogging. In the first place, I write and publish my own information; you are free to look and read (or ignore) at your own time because you don't miss anything by not logging on to my blog ten times a day. And in the second place, blogs are a place to write and discuss, as opposed to a place where I can only share witty one-liners and interesting links. My photos at Facebook don't tell viewers anything much about me except that I've been there and done that. But in my blog I can tell a real story, not a Facebook Timeline “story”. That's what led me back here. Besides, I know some of you guys are out there, even if there is no “like” button to hit.

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Something you'll like: I have had, so far and after all that I've lived through this year, the most rewarding summer of my life so far. I can say that now that I'm up the hill again after the long, slow climb from down under god-knows-where and I see that there's a horizon up ahead.

A month before Marcus died, he told Margareta that he thought, despite everything, that life was good. Imagine: He was getting transfusions twice a month, and platelets every week. Thoughts were tough and spaces became small. But when they were sitting there in the wind shelter and I called from London, he talked about having a happy life. Imagine that. Some people waffle along a long time without feeling that way, if at all. And there were times this past year when I wondered what living was all about, and I thought to myself: "Well, Marcus found something good in it". In this year-long experience and this summer of projects, I think I heard Marcus whisper Life's Big Secret in my ear at one point. The secret was really nothing more than something we already knew to be true: that life can also bring joy. And when you feel it, you can live on that feeling for a long time just knowing that it exists.

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Projects. They work. (I mentioned them in this winter entry)

#3. Learn to paddle kayak. Check. I officially confirm that I have lost my fear of water totally. And I don't feel that I'm afraid of anything anymore.  Here with the group's guide at the St. Anna archipelago:


Learning to empty another's kayak (which is what to do if they accidentally fall over):

The sunset really did look like this:



#4. Hike, hike, hike, among other places up in the Swedish mountains. Check. Booked one of those food-and-guide included trips up in Jämtland with a colleague Anna, and did almost weekly test hikes with 11 kilos in Kolmården or Vrinnevi come snow, rain or shine. So Project #1, Build muscles, has been put aside for now if you don't count the muscles I walk with.

March and April at Marmorbruket and Lilla Älgsjön:


May and June at Jursla and Svärtinge:



Jämtland mountain pictures to follow in another entry soon enough. It just deserves its own story.

#6.  I want to go out and be in nature as much as I can, and maybe motivate others to share these experiences with me. Check. One thing leads to the other, naturally.

And finally, one spontaneous (yet not totally out of the question) project: cats. Four kittens became orphans at my colleague Gerd's farm last May. They were bottle-fed like Al and Mike, cats we used to have in QC. I just jumped at the chance to get myself two sociable cat companions, and the decision felt right as soon as I saw the little furry critters at the back of Gerd's car, where she had them for feeding. I have two of the kittens in the apartment now, Selma and Tuffe, here at 11 weeks old:


There's a lot to learn from cats. They are fun-loving, always curious, can be extremely satisfied with their surroundings so that they purr and chirp in happiness, they allow themselves a long morning in bed and an afternoon siesta, and they bug you to remind you of what's really important when you think you're doing something important. If you have trusting cats, you can do nothing but give them unconditional positive regard. And food. They are real experts at enjoying life, and they do this without sucking up or losing their wild side or their integrity.  
Meow to cats. Hugs to friends.

3 Comments:

Anonymous jeline said...

I love this post! :-) Hugs to you and the cats. They're adorable.

12:51 PM

 
Blogger Ahoy! said...

Hej Jeline! Hugs! Watch out for when I blog about the Swedish mountains. You would have loved it up there. Total freedom from stress. :-) Hope you're enjoying things

7:13 PM

 
Blogger Lea said...

Meow!!! I loved reading this! Lea

11:52 PM

 

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