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söndag 23 juli 2017

Life returns

For a long time, one of the safe spots for this countries weather and coastal reports, was this light house on the island that is within the realms of our parish! An elderly couple and their son tended to the light house and called in the figures for the reports. They no longer do that but the light house is going!!
Good evening!

The week that now is almost gone have for certain been a busy one. And it had all the ingredients of a lifetime actually. My husband have been travelling to his hometown to take care of practical matters.
We have both been working as well and then trying to prepare mentally for the funeral.
It was held in his fathers native church,  almost every important event have taken place in that particular church. Last time we gathered there was for my mother in law.
It was a quiet and seren service, held by a female minister that I don't know personally. We were but a few people there. The day was quiet and sunny. 
So we could say goodbye, sing and pray. Only memories left. He was a man with great interest in everything moving, books all over, maps, records, theaterprograms, photos etc. 

This week have also been busy because I work alone and summertime is filled to the brim with things to do. Children to baptize, parents to talk to, couples to meet and hold weddings for, funerals to plan and other services to plan and hold. Friday also contained a visit at Walters place, he turned 95 you see and I was there a couple of years ago when his wife Ella turned 90. They built their house in 1945, close to the church, with a gigantic garden with fruittrees, berries and vegetables.
So we talked and she had been baking and her daughter in law hade made a strawberry layercake with cream.
This is a film from the dioces, here you can learn about our second church, actually our oldest and smallest!!! I posted the other one some time ago. Next week will be busy in this church, we have something called Road Church. It means the church is open , guiding every day, service every day, music and singing every day, coffee and home baked every day. Plenty of ladies keeping this tradition going. And people comes back year after year. All over the country you can find this!

The real treat this week was actually that my sister, halfsister that is, came to visit. She lives up north east in the US with her husband, an american, really very nice man,  that she met ages ago. They have lived both in Sweden and in the US but as for now, she has stayed more years abroad than in Sweden.  She is an adventurous type and has travelled a lot and worked abroad as well. They have two girls, a few years older than ours. She visits Sweden every second year but lately it has been more often.
We never grew up together and had no idea about one another until some years ago, but now we are best friends and I enjoy her visits very much!! She is beautiful, wise and great fun!

Another thing about this week was the annual service at the island in our parish, they have some annual festivities since 1996 and at the island you can find an english graveyard, small one, because of the visits made by the british fleet in the 18th century. They return every now and then to visit the graveyard and pay respect. There are also some graves left that tells the story of the plague in this area. Up on our small mountain more of that can be found.
Anyway, this means going by boat.....BBBBBOOAT!!!!! Boat means waves means seasick!

We've had much worse trips!!
It may look calm at first but soon the waves are rolling

Here is the place were the service is held, out in the open. Often with birds hovering and deers andering about. I think there was about 30-35 people there. It was a very nice moment, praying and singing with the total view of the sea and the sun shining. First we raise the islands own flag.  After the service everybody go down to the small canons making a grand salutation, executed by some honored guest. I did it once!  There are two more of these small canons, they are placed in a South African harbour, for reasons unknown to me.

You must now that many other activities are taking place at the same time, flea sale, waffels, chocolate wheel, throw balls and win a price,  exhibits from local artists and so on. In the county house they serve a delicious lunch with homemade pickled herring, salmon, pies and sallads. The island holds about 8 people all year round, but in the summertime the hostel opens and the restaurant opens and the grocery store opens. There where people everywhere!!

We have a great bunch of sea rescuers and to their help they have the boys flying the coast guards helicopter. They stopped by for a visit, with two boats and this!  
The chapel, one of the two left in our parish. 
We watched the firing from a distance.
"God is our safe haven", we use the chapel at least twice a year. I've had a couple of christenings here and sometimes there are weddings, every Advent and Easter we have a service here.
Going back to the mainland and solid ground.  Shortly after that I headed for another of our villages to attend a christeningservice. Lovely scenery and nice people. The day closed with a meeting with a couple that will be married in september.  After that, the bells were ringing in the sunday rest and the saturday evening was spent with the family. The sunday service went well, and so did the christening . Two girls this weekend, two more angels for our tree, two more disciples and siblings in the worldwide church of Christ our Lord!!! Joyful!

And this weeks happy news was about the retired nurse that decided she had more to give so she joined an organization called Operation Smile.  A simple form of surgery that gives children a future, being able to eat, speak and smile normally!! Together with other organisations that works with volonteers for poor peoples health all over the world, they bring so much hope and strenght to people. Blessed are they!!!
I bid you goodnight and God bless!!

torsdag 13 juli 2017

Royal birthdays and other things!

I do believe that summer has reached this region, at least for a while. No bath for me as yet, but some daredevils in the village started already in april...
Our village is invaded by camper vans and boats, there is an icecream shed every 50 metres, and the cafés and restaurants go almost around the clock. That is good for the rest of the year, many survive on the income this period, so I shouldn't complain about traffic and late night hollowers in the schoolyard and a multitude of children on kickbikes and airboards all over.

Today, is her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victorias 40th birthday!!
We were there when she celebrated 30 and 35, but lately we haven't been to Öland where they have a summerhouse. Castle. Öland was grandfathers gift to us, our time with him.

They started early today in the chapel, celebrating a service called Te Deum, to God.
Later on there will be trumpets and gifts and flags and official waving.
After that they go from Stockholm to Öland, and greet people there, very closely actually, she is a modern princess who exercise and runs in the park close to the castle in Stockholm. It was actually when she got a new gym instructor that we got our prince, Daniel!!We are rather proud of her, she has studied a lot and take interest in children with disabilities and a sustainable society. There are funds in her name to support children.
So Happy Birthday, princess Victoria - long may you live!
Here is a film I found on You tube, no copyright intended it says, so I guess it's okej! 

Otherwise, life is running on, this weekend I hold three weddings and the sunday service together with a local community close by. My husband spends much time in his hometown, sorting out things around the death of his father. His sister is there too, they need this time together. 
On monday, my sister is coming up for a visit. She lives in the states normally, and comes home every second year to visit family and friends. We share but one parent and haven't grown up together, so it's recent years contacts that has brought us together.  I really love her! It's a blessing in many ways and we are more best friends than siblings perhaps. 

I will soon bring you a post about this village and life here but for now on you can have a picture of our own little princess, one of the two beauties!!
One of our late evening walks, she wanted to catch the sunset and the water for Snapchat followers..

The local community built this stage close to the chapel in the woods, there we will celebrate our sunday service and there we will enjoy concerts and meetings all summer long. We live some 100 metres away....
I hope this weekend will be a weekend of light, grace and hope for you all and that at least one thing in the world could change for the better.  God bless you!

måndag 10 juli 2017

Going South Korean - a post for my girls latest passion.

This is Min Yoongi, called Suga. He is in the Rap line, looks sweet but is rather fierce. I think he is one of the most popular boys in BTS. He is a thinker. Sometimes called Grandpa. The others have great respect for him, both his temper and his mind.
Dear friends and blogreaders!

I am planning a row of posts about experiences you have when you share the life and interest of your children, and they get to share some of ours from childhood and teens. These posts will come into life every now and then, when I have gathered enough material, pictures, lyrics and translations perhaps.

In the middle of the chaos we are having and the sad farewell we had to say to grandfather, I have to create something positive. The funeral will be next week and we are all rather tense. The girls are very sad and a bit lost and keep together in their common interests, mostly on internet.  Those of you who have followed my blog knows that we went to Stockholm in december to see a show with two british You tubers; Dan and Phil

Park Jimin, called Jimin, is a dancer and singer. He can do ugly faces, he is shy and very kind but on stage he moves like a cheetah and his voice is very good. Girls love him.

 These two pictures are the same boy, Kim Namjoon, called Rap Monster....or Rapmon. He was in the band from the beginning, he is the leader and speaks english. He taught himself by watching tv-shows and You tube. He is clever, easily embaressed, he is in the rap-line but sings too and dance. He has the sweetest personality and is my personal favourite. Here you can see the change of hairstyles. They come in all colours, Namjoon mostly white or silver, the others blue, purple, pink, orange.....My oldest girl loves his dimples, they are rather cute!

Jeon Jungkook, Kookie, is the youngest in BTS,
he is in the vocal line but he dances also. He likes to tease and do imitations of his hyungs.
He loves his camera, takes good pictures and lives in his Timberlake boots.
Kim Taehyung, called V, is a dreaming boy with the softest
voice you have ever heard. He dances too and his personality
is full of surprises and sunshine. 

Here is the girls favourite boyband ;
BTS or the Bangtan boys. These beautiful boys are right now the centre of their lives so I will share them with you  and some thoughts about being young in South Korea, especially if you are talented.
Now, if I have understood the situation in Japan, working overtime is expected, hard pressure on students to get highest grades possible. In South Korea it seems to be the same thinking. Good education is vital, so the pressure is high.  I heard some young women interviewed about the reform the government have, they need more children to be born. But she said South Korea was no place for children,  their experience was that they hardly ever had any time with their fathers and since the girls now are eager to get well educated there is no room for children.

If you are talented in other ways, there are plenty of artschools, but they also have a very strong impact on the students. You must work very hard to become someone in showbusiness, K pop especially. Competition is tough. So you work, practise, study, work, practise, study and finally get to be backup for the established groups, in the videos, on stage. Once you are chosen, there is hardly any space for normal teenage life. If you are good enough, some producer will choose you and maybe you will become member of a band. The boys in BTS didn't go as a group from start, only one of them is left from start, but eventually all seven were solid. This means leaving home and living together in a dorm. They have lived that way for more than five years now, their whole life focused on practise, touring, tv-interviews and concerts. The company cares for them and they hardly do anything normal,  just visits family once in a while. 

This is Kim Seok Jin, called Jin. Vocal liner, dancer and oldest. They call him mother because he watches over them but his jokes are bad Dad jokes and he laughs mostly himself. This boys laughter can heal any dark mood.
Everything they do, almost, is taped and made public. Internet is packed to the brim with all sorts of filmclips, cute moments , jokes, interviews, hairstyles and smalltalk with the fans from a webcam on the hotelroom after a show. You can't believe how they love seeing one of the boys eating noodles and talking nonsense to them, in korean...mostly.
I've seen some liveperformances as well, from You tube. 
BTS fans are called armys. 

I have set up a small guideline to this passion that our girls are having. Think how different it was when you had to wait for ever to hear something new or perhaps get a poster from the pop- magazines.  Today these young artists share almost everything, but Koreans are formal, so there are no personal things, nothing showing bodies or anything controversial. They reveal as much as they think is proper but on internet people are on them like hyenas, smelling blood.

This is Jung Hoseok, he is in the rap-line and is one of the best dancers. He is called a ray of sunshine and his artistname is J-hope. He is a sweet, a little mad boy.

So why do I even write this post?
Well, young people interest me, especially when they have to fight their way through. I also love dancers, classic , jazz, street. I loved and adored Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly. Our daughters danced for some years and Oh, what shows they had!! But boys rarely dance and I like when they do. And I love music, classic, folklore, jazz, choirs.....
Last year the youngest started to listen to these boys, strange, enervating music, hip-hop, rap, all the same to me. They looked the same, sounded the same, videos where strange, music unbearable and the clips on Youtube showed 7 childish and noisy boys with pink hair and makeup.
However, being a mother that never had boys, my heart went soft when I realized how they are treated by the company, living together, pampered and bossed, watched and superviced.
Korean young have the greatest respect for older people, especially important people. These boys adore their manager and the staff. But they don't live normal lives, I think even more so than other idols in music and theatre. Kpop is demanding, you have to look good, sound good, be in good shape, so diets, exercise, healthy food and endless procedures around face and hair is their daily life.  On internet, the fans - armys - follow their every move and give comments, not always so nice, about looks and personality.  BTS have won several awards, they write their own music and can both act and sing, sometimes they do parodical theatre out of their own biggest hits and make fun of eachothers soft spots, or their own.
Now I can tell them apart, even their voices and I have some favourite songs, but again, being a mother makes me want to adopt them because they seem so lost and vunerable, but also I have taken interest in their work and in the South Korean ways. We try to learn some of the language, it's like nothing else.
And we try to enjoy films where the boys are natural, without makeup and with t-shirts and jeans, doing normal things, working, playing, cooking. The best was when the company invited them for a ten day vacation in Norway, Sweden and Finland, giving them, for the first time, a chance to have a budget, buy tickets, find their way, asking around, living in hostels and trailers, doing what other people in their twenties do. Very surprised Yoongi and Jimin comments on this, being 24 year old children, not able to do anything on their own before and now having to manage everything. We get to know them closely, they try to forget the camera, they take pictures, buy souvenirs and are amazed by the beautiful scenery, the people, the food, the fact that they are walking freely around, sharing a leisure
day with nothing but taking ferries , shop food and enjoy being together without having to do much. Like normal people .   These boys, young men, will stay in the dorm until something changes, a relation perhaps or solo project. They are all between 20 and 26, family should be an interest.  Their company cares for them and I hope it will continue with respect and a change to grow and change.
Here is a musicvideo, not very typical Kpop or even BTS, I wouldn't dare, but to show how they work. It's a song about friendship and support. They considder the band as their family.  We have followed our girls on theatres, concerts and shows, me mostly. If these boys shows up close by, I will be there, with our girls, being embarassing, but happy.

tisdag 4 juli 2017

When everything else is alive

This evening my father-in-law passed away, at the age of 87-
it was one of the things that has troubled us lately, his failing health and diminishing life span.
Once an intelligent and active man, both physically and with  his mind, his world became smaller and the light started to fade. My husband and sister in law have taken turns to make his life interesting with books, lectures and excursions. I have tried to brighten things up by bringing dinner, cakes and helping out . There have been all kinds of days but lately there have been only one kind. 
We were all there, we made it!  And so it began

                           We gathered by his quiet bed
                           we spoke to him and held his hand
                           we hoped that he could  understand
                           and slowly cross the line we dread,
                           a final gasp - and he was dead

                          We all shed tears, his hand went cold
                          his arms and face so thin and old
                           the eyes, so fixed on us before
                          was glancing thru an unseen door
                           in heaven opened, so we're told

                           And there we are, with all words lost
                           as long before the Pentecost
                           What now? we asked, both worried and calm
                            we'll close his eyes and loosen his palm
                            in a circle we stood in pray and read hymn 23
                            and thought about how the future without him might be

                           In the sky rose a colourful rainbow,
                           " is he safe up in heaven now?"
                           The blackbird sang praise from the rooftop
                           and we gathered our strenghts somehow
                           Come practical issues, phonecalls, decisisons,
                           pack all his things, give the doctor admission

                           One more goodbye, hugs and tears and words
                           of comfort flew round
                           So tired and hungry we now were homebound
                           There ended a life in our midst, here on earth
                            plain to see
                            The story of him will live on , he is safe,
                            and so are we

I am no poet,  but there it is!    At home , most is normal again, the youngest just fell asleep in the coach,  she gave her very best last night and needs the rest.  Little darling.

söndag 25 juni 2017

Summertime - again?

I know I am not very active right now as blogging goes.
From time to time my life just rushes on and it seems that friday comes right after monday.
We are having a bit of a hard time and I admit, we are not coping all that well.

At the same time, the world is in a bad state and need attention as well. In todays sermon I thought about the fact that we are surrounded by announcements, statements, warnings, appeals, political speaches, headlines. We are scared, downhearted, sad, angry, in despair, guilty.  And at the same time you can never know what headline will be altered in the morning, what astonishing news will be gone by evening, what everlasting truths will be lies ever so shortly.   We are tired of all these disasters and terrors, endlessly shouted at us.
We need to hear about something solid and good, something comforting that will stay the same tomorrow and the next day. We need statements and proclamations that can carry us however the wind may change.
This sunday ended the Midsummerweekend, it's the sunday of John the Baptist.  It's the proclamation of the solid rock, the Salvation and the neverchanging Resurrection. The Lord IS God, and no one else, the Saviour IS born, the Kingdom is real, the Covenant is real.

I for one need to hear that kind of proclamation, otherwise my soul will get tired by the suffering of people arround me and perhaps my heart will turn elsewhere and get cold.
But if I know that God is on our side, never letting go, I can let that knowledge carry me through the dark times.  And pray that it can comfort others!
Zacharia, Johns father, is giving voice and words to the joy he feels about this son of his, God keeps his promises so that everyone will know it and see it. It's a wonderful song.

In Sweden, we don't speak much of John the baptist, but we celebrate midsummer, both in church and in our homes, you can read about it in my post from last year:
If you want to know more about the Summer solstice, check with the Heron, he is the expert on that!!

This weekend I had one marriage, two christenings, one high mass and two services with lots of music.  I am a bit tired. We've had such funny weather too, for long we heard warnings everyday about the water, now the rain got back and so we are good again.  
The wedding was interesting, the bride was from Thailand and her sister sang for us, a song about land and family and speaking to your loved ones about worries and joys. Amazing singing technique!!! After that wedding I stood in the pouring rain talking to the couple who wants their wedding to be in the harbour beneath a certain tree, we decided there would be no rain on that actual day.......
I actually pinched this picture from Facebook, a man taking nice pictures of our choirs singing!!!! I couldn't take any since I am down there!! As you can see, the empty seats in the front rows belong to the choirs...100 year Jubilee!!!

Last weekend also was interesting and indeed a very pleasant event. Our choirleader in church turned 60 in february and that has caused him lots of agony. To cheer himself up he decided to give the parish something from his heart and as he has served in 40 years he set up for a 100 year jubilee.  The churchchoir turned 80 three years ago and I wrote a song for that occasion but since it never was finished I took help from a colleague and finished it now. I just wanted him to have it , but he actually wanted to use it so, oh dear, the choir sang it on that Jubilee concert. So he started out with Bach from the powerful church organ and then three different choirs took turns in the singing, we had amazing solos from several persons, by voice, by trumpet, by harmonica, by violin.....  oh, what blessed times!!! The church was filled to the brim!  Praise was sung, carefully chosen songs, Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Swedish composers( and me!). You can see a picture above!!
We closed with  "Abide with me", varying between solo, trumpet, violin, choir and the entire congregation .  I heard now that we had it recorded and if we are lucky it's good so we can get a copy each. I wish I knew how to bring it to you, but I don't.  

Here is a little film about our church, it's in swedish but you can enjoy the pictures!! This is where I serve, one of our churches, that is!!

We need to share both good and bad, we need to take part of both darkness and light.  The terrible disasters that shake the world right now and have done so for a long time, are enough to discourage anyone, but there are so many heartwarming occasions in the middle of all this, that you still find it possible to carry on.
Since we are going to London again this year, we are following the news with great care.
But we know that terror hits everywhere, in Stockholm we experienced it for the first time.
I feel downhearted about the Grenfell , all those people, and for what gain?? But now we hear they are taking action all over the UK. 600 houses just like that one...600???!!!! Only in the UK? What about the rest of the world? Hurry, lifes can be saved!!

It's too late for those poor souls , but hopefully there have been lessons to learn. No more.
WE have to come to many of those NO more and NEVER again!!  At least we have to try taking charge of what we actually can do!  So much to do, so much knowledge to be used, so much experience to weigh in before we decide, so much concern to take, so fragile is the human life and so strong.  We are no fools, we know what is right, we have the tools. So as far as it is our responsibility,  when things are within our reach and we have the means to do right, then we must do it.  And while we raise our voices for action, we can take care of those in need, the love and care between people when times are dark, is the most hopeful proof that the words from the Scripture today - are valid and solid. God hasn't abandoned his people - so love still remains among us - we can see it with our own eyes!! 
And as a small token of bright days: some pictures from two weeks ago:

We went for a small excursion in the Osterlen county, this is the Chapel of Knäbeck. It can hold 20 if you stand tight...

Churchwarden Peter trying the belltower
The internal

lördag 10 juni 2017

The lark ascending - music to make you lighthearted

Just wanted to cheer my british friends up and let you all take part of something really wonderful.  This is "The lark ascending" by Ralph Vaughn Williams.
Since I compose a bit myself, I find great pleasure discovering new music and this I heard the other day, feeling gloomy about Brexit, Trump and personal matters.
When such music is possible , how great will not the heavenly choirs be like? I wonder.
So if you found time to plough yourself through my last post, maybe this one will fill your heart with light and blessings!

fredag 9 juni 2017

This is the season

So this is the season?

Mothers day is the last sunday in May, look what I've got!!

Come sunshine, come tourists, come flags!! 

The month of maying is long gone, there was hardly any spring at all, some say now that we have but two seasons left.  Pentecost was cold and windy, with our 55 voices big church choir singing at the service, our National Day was spent with anthems sung from every citysquare, speaches held and flags and banners waving. We payed our icecream boat a visit and then strolled over to the big(?) city square.  New swedish citizens welcomed, folkdancers and childrens choirs. This has been a holiday for 7 years now,  originally the day, june 6th, was celebrated because of the King Gustav Wasa ( yes, the one that gave his name to the skiing contest) With him the country was united under one king only in 1523. That same king also made way for the protestant church. In doing that he emptied the monasteries and killed quite a few monks, but hey, we were now lutherans!!

Our part of the country was still danish though... anyway, several hundred years went by and we then imported a new king for the new kind of kingdom, a new order of government was signed 1809 june 6th, by june 27 all the counties had signed and so we had a new reign. We now got one of Napoleons generals for king, they couldn't get along so it was a win win situation and we got the Bernadottes, first one called Carl XIV Johan, but he actually didn't speak french like everyone else did, more some kind of spanish.  Since 1818 this has been the Royal order in Sweden, the King has no real power today but is a very important symbol for our nation. We love our royal family. At first we celebrated the flag alone, then we started to call it a nationalday 1983, although we never had any victory or independence day to celebrate so this day never had the pregnance that these days have in other countries.  Norway f.i. 

Here is the national anthem, about great days of glory, this particular version is from the park in Stockholm, Skansen where the royal family celebrate every year.

This is also the time for graduation, schoolproms and partys in every garden, the barbecue time and in our community - time for Sweden Rock Festival - a week when we are invaded by 33.000 hideous and friendly rockers from all of Sweden ; Denmark, Norway, Finland but also Germany and more.
They arrive dressed in jeans and t-shirts or even suits and polished shoes and come out of their tents and caravans dressed in robes, with black or white eyelenses and walking sticks with skulls and demons on them. This year we have Scorpions and Aerosmith f.i, but last year Queen was here, sort of...Freddie....

This is the season when our children go on summer leave, in Sweden they have that summer from mid june to mid august. For some children this is a wonderful time of bathing, travelling, picnic and partys. It's a time for meeting relatives and friends. For others, it's a idle time, time to kill, time spent indoors with the computer as only company, for some children these are days when they don't get enough to eat every day because of the economical and social situation in the family. When I was that age the community sent me for summer to families in the country side, I have written about those days here: 

without that help my life would have been quite different, for sure.

This is also election time , it's not going very well for the conservatives in UK. Not in Sweden either, the right wing is falling rapidly, they call for changed leadership, and that is also the case in the left wing. A coalition is needed for next years election? In the UK, it seems that everything is no shaking, we hope for at good and solid solution, the Brexit has to be managed in a wise and sound fashion, now when its there to handle. I'm sorry about it, but hope for the best. 

Handling things wisely is also a deep felt prayer, when terror hits again and again. We need to take action, we need to be firm and we need to unite our forces. This is the season when the free world and the freedom of people is threathened by a thinking that is uncomprehensable to us.
It seems that an answer in military fashion is unevitable, so now it's on.  A sensible political thinking to prevent more bloodshed, must be layed on the table as well as those actions.  People are scared and angry, people are hurt and bewildered.  Who can we trust? No one?  I fear a closed and suspicious society. That was the goal, wasn't it? 

But then again; so comforting to see that there are no hayforks or angry mobs roaming the street, screaming for revenge.  Instead people start to sing, buy flowers, write poems and greetings, holding and comforting each other, side by side, young and old, christian and muslim.
We have to fight this, but we must keep the hatred out of our hearts - that is what they say these people who ran for their lives and now are back in the streets, seeking fellowship.  That probably wasn't intended but that is what we've got.  I pray that it will last. 
We are , I believe, strong enough to act for those who are in need right now, and we do,  and so hope is possible, because Gods children need eachother, He created us that way.

Same sparrow every day - tjirrp, tjirrp. I don't know what he is on about but I prefer him because at the rooftop of the parish home, we right now have an angry family of gulls, attacking everyone and everything, protecting the newly hatched babies.  I can understand them, children must be protected, but I still prefer the sparrows way.....
This is the season also, to hope for a better life ahead while trying to get through every day not worrying about the next.  We try to do this in our family, some of you know the difficulties we are facing right now, but we are not abandoned, just very tired.  Matthew 11:28 is called for!
" come to me , ye who are tired and burdened, I shall give you rest "( swedish translation, didn't check King James's )

And now, a bite to eat and then off to prepare for another christening of a little boy. 
This afternoon will be spent celebrating the 60th birthday of a woman in the churchchoir, fighting to live a good and bright life in spite of her handicap - this will be a good day!!!

lördag 3 juni 2017

No doubt about the drought.

Good saturday!!!

This beautiful cross was made of the talented old lady Eva Spångberg. She moved home to Jesus a couple of years ago.  On sunday we celebrate Pentecost with 55 choirsingers, musicians and a wonderful Mass with folkmusic. Blessings to you all!!!!!

Water, cool, clear water!!! We are having some problem with the waterlevel, mostly in the southern parts of Sweden.
Up north they still have snow..
We hade a flood this winter, the water rose to a level we seldom see around here,   covering backyards and parkinglots and gardens. Unfortunately that has very little to do with the water supplies. Many hot and dry summers and some winters almost without snow has created a situation that can become very troublesome and already is in some parts.
On my favourite island Öland they are trying a device for seawater, last year they had to take fresh water from the mainland in great tankers.  
The drought also has it's roots in how we use water nowadays.  We shower for hours, some take showers twice a day. We have swimmingpools in every second garden, we have recycling so we have to rinse everything in order to avoid smelling yoghurt bottles and oily trays. 
The farmers need to use sprinklers on the fields when there is no rain, the soil is flying around
like smoke. And in our part they are alarmed about the state of things when we start Sweden Rock Festival, four days of solid rock. The american bands are reluctant and some have backed out, they fear for terrorism.  Anyway, it takes huge amounts of water to serve all these rockers.
After the festival we will probably be drinking by teaspoon....
Still, we are blessed and spoiled, we still have water , clear and clean, for everyone to use. Soo many walk for miles and then the water is almost never clean, so....

Yesterday was also graduationday in our little town, hundreds of
young, singing, howling, happy and scared teenagers in their white hats
and white dresses or smart suits. The great ball took place last week,
with long dress, hairdo and limousines, they spend half a fortune on
dresses, hairdresser, makeup, shoes, champaign and parties.
The brightening future is ours - they chant or sing.
Our oldest is up next year....my husband and I fear the great
cavity that will evolve in our bankaccount.

Taking a stroll last night we saw the party tents and the balloons in blue and yellow , many graduates in our village as well. 
Our oldest is now 18, she can vote in church, we have a system with elected churchcouncils,
you can vote from the age of 16. But she thinks it's better to prepare for the real election next year. At the news we could hear the voices of young people in UK who have no intention of voting for parliament next week. They have no interest for it, they say, and it's no use voting, they wont care about us anyway a young girls said. Democracy has been fought for and dreamed of and is an impossible thought in many countries. Young people there can only dream of it.  But I can understand that when you find yourself standing last on the list of priorities, you may not think voting can change anything. They interviewed young people in Leeds, unemployed or underpayed, insecure and with no chans of university studies. Same kind of people that live in trailors and try to make ends meet with bad pay, bad health and no social security , in Trumps America. They found he was an alternative for them. How the young people in UK think of their future and who to vote for, is also troublesome. They never voted for Brexit, how then can they choose who is to make the exit !

Politics is important and difficult. We'll be having the Burma leader for a visit in Sweden soon.
Politics is a way of adapting the gospel to make society work. Martin Luther thought it was important to create a society where everyone was safe and every skill needed and valued!!
A good working society is a blessing.  Unfortunately he got involved with the uproar of the farmers and stood on the wrong side, I think he accused the farmers of a bloody uproar and therefore banned it, maybe he didn't foresee the bloodbath that his peers made of it!!!
It's nothing new this game of power, it will continue for as long as there is something to gain in oppressing, stealing and lying. Too many lies are being spread, too much of it is mistaken for the truth and too little is discovered before the damage is made. WE have a great economical scandal rolling up, even bigger than the first one a couple of years ago, the one with the false mailboxes... Now we see billions hidden in bankaccounts, while the owners declare nothing of it or only a trifle of it to the taxoffice. Democracy also need a system where everyone helps paying for everything we decide we need: schools, roads, trains, hospitals, welfare, security...
If you decide not to be a part of that when you actually have the means, you are no better than the young people in Leeds who say: "Politics is not my thing, I don't want to be part of it"

In Sweden the headlines are screaming about mistrust and bad leaders, may they be out out and ashamed, pictures and miscredits are visible everywhere, these people have families and feelings, the blaming society that Rachel spoke of is very true. We need a scape goat for the bad situation, be it the countries finances or the footballteams losses. 
I know, they chose to go in to politics , they get payed for it, they have plenty of advantages being who they are, but they are still people, humans, do to others...
We are not talking of crimes here, just failors in doing what I was set to do.  Mercy mercy.

Chestnuts by the church

Our little bee hotel got its first inhabitants, six of the small rooms are taken and this guard is watching over them!!!!!

Poppies are popping up everywhere, glowing red!!
Seeing the lupines in their nice pastel coats, makes me think of John Cleese. Ever seen Dennis Moore?  The rather sweet but confused Robin Hood character? Click and enjoy!!!


Lupines without the red are almost even more beautiful!!!!!

måndag 22 maj 2017

Anniversary - from harbour to harbour in 25 years!!!!!


As I thought I would share another anniversary with you, I find it best to link you to the story of the event 25 years ago:

If you travel along that link you will find a story about our first trip to Greece and the xchange of golden rings!!

This post, however is the story of a small anniversary trip, to celebrate the 25 years that has passed since then, this time heading for our own south borders and a small fishing harbour.

After a busy week and actually rather dark and gloomy, moody, if you like, my husband bought me flowers and I had booked a B&B on a farm down south.

Saturday morning we left the girls and grandma in the house and headed for a place called Forsakar,  a forest with a ravine with waterfalls, smaller but rather beautiful. It's also a somewhat dangerous place since the ravine have no fences. Along the riverside you can see that several of the very tall trees have lost their grip in the thin soil, falling dramatically across the stream.  The trail leads up and down along the riverside, the forest is thick and filled with birdsong and flowers, insects and ....sand. We found a small rock with a cross shaped pattern in it, and sat down for a nice cup of coffee and a sandwich. 

 I wonder who made this pattern?
And I wonder what flower this is?

Deep river... nah!

SMALL waterfall!!!
These funghi are usually found on pinetrees but from time to time they grow on beech and birch. They are beautiful, like small canopies.
 After a rather hot but pleasant walk/climb, we climbed in to the car again. You see, we skipped spring this year, I know some of you agree, from icy mornings last week to 25 degrees celcius hot this day!!  Ah well,  we were on our way to the sea, to walk on the windy cliffs of Dover, well at least our version of it, Hovs hallar and the plateau where  the stones of Ale are situated, no no, not ale, Ale is a name!!! High above the waterline , with a walkingtrail among the hills and sometimes in the company of cows and sheep. Did I mention the wind?  Here below you can see some scenery from our walk. We left our bags in the B&B, took the picnic bag and started the trail right through one of the farmers inner yard!

As I said, trail began in the farmyard. She had seen lots of hikers and didn't bother much.

A sea of rape seed, nice waters!
Here you see the sea!!

And here you see the sea, a bit too high up for my taste actually!! Me, not the sea! The undersea stream here is rather strong and there have been dramatic drownings among , mostly middleaged, men.

This was the lowest hindrance for the cattle, the highest caused a climb of 2 metres, I mean, for a frail little woman with a metal hip, that is a challenge. And more of it, WHAT ARE THEY STOPPING WITH A HINDRANCE OF TWO METRES?? Giraffes???

The stones of Ale are said to be a cultic place, with traces back to 700 BC. It is build to cover the winter and summer solstice and also several more parts of the calender. Inside the boatstructure there have been found traces of a burialplace. Some stones have been raised long before the boatstructure was completed. For us, however, it is a beautiful spot with a striking view. 
6 hours later, after our dinner, we climbed
back up again and took some more pictures!!!
 Well, since our engagement took place in a greek little harbour, it seemed right to take our picnic at the ridge of Kåseberga, a small fishing harbour with a equally small village attached to it. When we were children, this place was very simple and you could buy smoked herring or salmon and eat it on a bench. Today there are tourist shopping, bakery and at least 3 restaurants and a grill in the harbour area and two more in the village. Mostly open at summertime, like most villages by the sea everything closes in september.
I had prepared a chickensalad and added a rosé wine, small bottle off course!  Very tasty actually. You see the harbour below as well, a very sweet sight!! In Greece, we changed rings right after the thunderstorm and before dinner. Crickets had begun chanting, this time we had no crickets and no thunder.                                                                                                        

 Some hours later we returned to the harbour and had dinner, this time we dared the pizza , very special , thin, baked in a stone oven with logfire. The heat had expired a bit, but we chose to sit by the sea anyway and after dinner we went back up to the hill to get a last look at the rocks, the sea and the sun.  
 Nothing like a good sunset, this was around 21.00 and very soon after that the setting was completed.

A cup of tea and pannacotta with berries completed the day!
Next day we went to a place called Backåkra where the swedish FN boss Dag Hammarsköld used to stay. There is a museum and a monument, more like a place for prayers and solitude, the word PAX is chopped in to the center stone. Around in the field there are hundreds and hundreds of small orchids and anemones, those blue furry ones, impressive in height at this place. Many people makes pilgrimages to this place and church have outdoor services here.

Larks singing, otherwise this was the most silent place, and believe me, silence is not what we usually have around us. The world today is such a noisy place, and hasty too. We move around like in a race but inside we move at beetle speed.  

Before returning home we stopped at the turkey farm to have a bite to eat and buy some goodies home, sausages, pies, smoked turkey and other tasty things.  Back home we hurried to have a cup of coffee with the rest of the family and then off to afternoon service where the childrens choirs had prepared a musical about the Creation and the six-year olds in the parish came to get their bibles. It was a splendid anniversary, God be praised!
A quiet sacred place for worried and restless souls and tired feet. Dag Hammarskölds Backåkra.