Lynn Saoirse – “Eleanor Plunkett”.

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   Today I’d like to share with you yet another composition of Turlough O’Carolan played by Lynn Saoirse. THis is one of O’Carolan’s most famous tunes, which I’ve already shared in the past played by another Irish Celtic harpist Celia Briar. This is a planxty dedicated to Eleanor Plunkett of county Meath. 

Sofia Karlsson – “Lisa Lill” (Little Lisa).

   Hey people! 🙂 

   Sofia Karlsson is someone whose name has already appeared on my blog, twice, actually, but both of these times it was in the context of Cornelis Vreeswijk’s music, as I shared two songs of his that she has covered. Well, today the time has come to share with you guys a song that, as far as I know, is Sofia’s original song, because it’s most definitely not just those two covers of Cornelis’ songs that I like of Sofia’s music. I think Sofia Karlsson is a great singer, and what’s interesting is that despite being a “proper” folk singer (as in, not just folk-ish and sliding on the borders of the genre) her music seems to speak not only to those who generally like folk, but to a much wider audience, because she has been a best-selling artist not only in Sweden, but apparently in Denmark and Norway as well. More interestingly, it was her album Svarta Ballader (Black Ballads) with her arrangements of poems by Dan Andersson, which has made her such a prominent artist and garnered most attention, which is surprising because as far as I know it’s not like Dan Andersson is some extremely popular and widely known Swedish poet. Also I’ve heard her music several times in our Polish Radio Programme 2, whhich, as a classical/jazz/folk/all-round sophisticated stuff radio station does admittedly play a lot of obscure music, but I feel like if some non-Polish-language and non-Anglophone folk music is played in a Polish radio station, the artist has to be someone really successful in their home country, or their music has to be incredibly accessible so that the language barrier doesn’t matter to those to whom it usually tends to do.  

   Sofia Karlsson is from Stockholm and comes from a very musical family. One little detail that I, being a name nerd, find very cool and interesting about her is that she has an absolutely cute middle name, and I believe a very rare one, which is Blåsippa. Blåsippa is the Swedish name for the plant that is called hepatica nobilis in Latin (no idea if it has a more English-sounding name) and I’ve never come across this name in any other situation. I really like obscure flower names as given names. And I guess it must suit her because it’s an early spring flower, and she was born in early spring as well. 

   I actually first heard this song thanks to my friend, back when I was still hanging around in the blind online network where I used to blog in the past and stuff. It was when I was finally able to restart my Swedish learnning and became familiar with SOfia’s music, though not all of it yet, and introduced it to said friend, who really liked it, despite speaking no Swedish. And she must have done some further digging herself, ‘cause she found this song before I became acquainted with Sofia’s entire discography, and she in turn introduced it to me and I fell in love with it instantly. I wrote a translation of it for y’all, which is probably not without errors/things that could have been put better but generally wasn’t a very difficult thing to do. 

  Little Lisa, you turn your gaze towards the street
Towards the asphalt, last year’s leaves
And the air is heavy when you breathe
And tastes old and dead
It drips from the lime trees’ branches
You are cold and you don’t see anything
But you know where you are going
Go now, little Lisa, go all the way in
You’re walking there so quietly in the shadow
And it blends in with your hair
And the twilight’s dullest colours
Wrestle with the beating rain
But then you hear up from the grey
A bird whistling a wind
And you know that now you must go
Go now, little Lisa, go all the way in
Sometimes the time has pockets
In which you put your freezing hands
A little moment of warmth
A little moment to live in
Little Lisa, you are upstairs in the chamber
And everything feels so dirty and small
You sit down at the piano
Want to play for faith and for hope
But the tears are falling on the keys
Because you shall leave today
It hurts, but you must not hesitate
Go now, little Lisa, it will get worse if you stay
Little Lisa, you play your tango
You live your Norrland blues
So the heart jumps and flies
And never comes to rest
Little Lisa, you must now be brave
Play strong and play now
For your mum in heaven, for children that shall come
Go now, little Lisa, go all the way out
And the lonely out on the street
They live for themselves and as before
Can you feel it in your chest
Then you’re still human
The line is already drawn
Little Lisa, the forests miss you
Everything can be yours now
The world is waiting to show itself
Little Lisa, you turn your gaze to the sky
And you hope for sunlight again
And I promise that it soon will get better
Go now, little Lisa, go all the way home
Go now, little Lisa, go all the way home 

Samia – “The Night Josh Tillman Listened to My Song”.

   Hey people! 🙂 


   Today I thought I’d share with you a song that has captured my attention last year very much, and still whenever I listen to it, it really makes me think and raises a lot of feelings for me, because I think it’s so very interesting and unusual! I don’t really know much about Samia, I’ve listened to some of her other music after I accidentally came across this song for the first time, but her other songs didnn’t quite strike a chord for me as much as this one did. I first heard it on Spotify, there’s that thing on there called autoplay which will play similar music after what you’ve been listening to ends, and that’s how I came across it and it just played in the background in my room. What first captured my attention about this song was its melody, but as I listened to it again and more closely, it was the lyrics that really intrigued me. She wrote this song for the musician Josh Tillman, aka Father John Misty, one of her early musical influences. And I think it is so bold and courageous of her to do, to expose her deep feelings in this song like that, all the inner conflict that she has going on around this fascination with him, and obviously she didn’t just write this song and lock it away somewhere but actually shared it with the world, taking the risk (very high I think) that one day Josh Tillman may indeed decide to Google his name or learn about this song some other way and have a listen to it, and think something about it, and possibly about her as well. She’s even sure that he’ll hate it but she put it out there anyway, even though, despite implying that she doesn’t really care about his opinion, it sounds like at least a part of her does care. To me, that’s a really brave and I guess quite an unusual thing to do, and an intriguing topic to write a song on. Even though I have no idea about Father John Misty other than being vaguely familiar with the name, every time I listened to this song I was wondering whether he actually heard it aand what was his reaction, and at some point I came across an interview with Samia where she said that he put it on his playlist, but according to her is probably a bit scared of her now. I guess people often respond to things like this by feeling creeped out which is understandable in a way but also kind of sad because that’s hardly the fascinated party’s intention. 😀 

Sofia Jannok – “ViviAnn”.

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   Today I’d like to share with you a Sámi song, from an incredibly talented Swedish Sámi artist which is Sofia Jannok. I think Sofia is also one of the most influential Sámi musicians and one of the better known outside of Sámi land. I first came across her music thanks to, which was my main source of music discoveries at the time and which generally introduced Sámi music to me, a bit accidentally, which I already wrote a little about when sharing Ulla Pirttijärvi’s song last month. Sofia seems like a fierce and powerful woman with very concrete views on the world, which don’t overlap with mine nearly at all at least from what I know and have noticed, but I still love her music very much and admire her love for her land. She has a great voice and I love how she blends so many different music styles, and how all these different styles all blend very well with her joiking. Unfortunately, despite I’ve been familiar with ViviAnn for years, I have no idea what it is about. Aside from joiking, it has lyrics in Sámi, but I’ve never seen any translations and have no clue what it could be about or who ViviAnn is. It makes me think of our Zofijka, because Vivi is a Finnish diminutive of Sofia/Sohvi, and I sometimes even call her Vivi, and Ann is obviously a variant of Anna, and Sofi’s middle name is Anna. 

Sofia – “I Don’t Want to Lose a Friend”.

   Hey people! 🙂 

   The song I’d like to share with you today comes from a young Norwegian singer called Sofia, and this was the first song by her that I’ve heard and instantly liked it, and I still like it a lot, it sounds just great as a whole. Sofia Hyttedalen is from Sandane, and is signed to a Norwegian label called Tooth Fairy. I think this song could be incredibly relatable to loads of people. 

Serlina – “Puste Under Vann” (Breathe Under Water).

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   So, another Norwegian pop song this week, this time with quite a dance vibe to it. It comes from Serlina, about whom I don’t really  know a lot as this is the only song by her that I’ve heard and as soon as I heard it I liked it, but I never really dug deeper into her music. I don’t know for sure where in Norway she’s from and I’m not all that very good yet at this guess game in  the Norwegian edition haha so I won’t be guessing here, but she sings in nynorsk, and despite that I’ve managed to translate it for you with no significant problems along the way, although these lyrics aren’t really that complicated to begin with. 

    It is not easy to live
As if in a dance on roses
When everything we see seems better
I guess we all have felt it
Want to go away from clouds that shadow
Because I want out into the sun
But everything has taken a new turn
Now that you are gone I do not see anymore
The memories disappear, see them go far away
Can’t you see it?
There is something more
Can you hear me shout higher than the mountain?
Hold myself back, but my heart wants to say
I cannot find my way onto land
But can’t breathe under water
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under water
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under water
Can’t breathe under water
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under water
Have never heard it was easy
To let go of memories
Because everything that I thought was genuine
Has completely changed
You said those words to me
And I gave you a look
Who has suddenly become small?
Now that you are gone I do notsee anymore
The memories disappear, see them go far away
Can’t you see it?
There is something more
Can you hear me shout higher thann the mountain
Hold myself back but my heart wants to say
I cannot find my way onto land
But can’t breathe under water
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under water
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under water
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under
Can’t breathe under water

Travelle ft. Bad Habits – “Wasted On You”.

   Hey people! 🙂 

   So as you probably remember if you read my yesterday’s post I said I’m going to focus on pop that has something to do with Norway this week, well, until Friday I think but we’ll see. And for today, it’s electropop more exactly, and I chose to share with you a song from a musician who has been quite a regular guest on my blog lately, and whom both my Mum and me like, that is Kristoffer Björntvedt, aka Travelle (or Trollguten or some other things as well, but I’m mostly sharing his Travelle music). This song was written and produced by him in collaboration with Bad Habits, and as far as I can tell based on my little research, Bad Habits is also a project of his, together with a guy called Adrian Eriksen, and they’ve also released several other singles as Bad Habits, although I guess Bad Habits is also the stage name that Adrian uses for his own music. They went to school together and, according to what Travelle told Universal Music (which is the label to which he has been signed to under this particular stage name) they both have differing approaches to production and music in general so they decided to  create something together. It is certainly interesting when two very different people make music with each other, although I don’t really know Adrian’s own music so I can’t really see much of where these differences show, and it also must be very challenging and require a lot of compromises, or so I’d imagine. This song, as you’ll likely be able to figure out, is about a really strong and obsessive type of infatuation or crush or something like that. Sounds very all-consuming to me, and I’m sure that it must be very relatable for many people, even is to me to a degree where my faza peeps are concerned, because while my fazas don’t really involve love, they can also be a bit obsessive and during a faza peak it can make you feel really high and the feeling, as well as my faza peeps themselves, are very addictive lol. 

My most cherished childhood memory.

   I thought that I would write another journal prompt-inspired post, this time based on a prompt from a book called 412 Journaling Exercises and Prompts for Personal Growth by Meredith Lane. I’ve actually already sort of used this prompt in my private diary in the past, but thought I’d also write about it on here, and the prompt goes as follows: 

   Describe your most cherished childhood memory. 

   When I was writing about this prompt in my diary, I found it more difficult than I would have thought it could be to think about the one, MOST cherished memory from my childhood. I could think of a lot of happy and pleasant and all sorts of positive moments from my childhood, but it wasn’t like right when I saw this question something would spring to my mind as being the MOST. I of course eventually did come up with something that felt like it could come up this criterion, but I assumed that the fact it took me so long was due to my brain being at fault, because apparently our brains are a lot better at retaining and remembering the yucky stuff that happened to us – provided it’s not so very yucky that the brain would rather get rid of it and suppress it – rather than the good stuff. Before I wrote this post, I decided to ask my Mum about her happy childhood memories. Partly because that’s what I very often do before or during writing posts like this, because we usually end up having long discussions on the topics of my posts and I end up seeing it from an additional angle, but also because I was just curious. My Mum has often told me that she feels like she doesn’t remember a whole lot out of her childhood and has a lot of gaps, and while I don’t think she would call her childhood unhappy and I don’t think one could call it so objectively, most of what she has shared with me about it sounds just a little bit unpleasant to me. The times in which her childhood happened to be – communism – her extreme timidity and anxiousness as a child, and her dad, who in all her stories, especially the ones she told me when I was a child, sounded extremely stern and even a bit scary to me – an ever-looming presence of someone who is physically present most of the time yet hardly speaking to his children at all, and if so, usually to scold or punish them. – It was all the more scary for me that he is so different now as a grandfather, and a better father to his adult children as well, and that extreme difference was unfathomable for me. So when I asked her this, she ended up having the same problem and couldn’t come up with anything specific for a long time. So I asked her whether she thinks it’s because she doesn’t have a lot of happy memories from her childhood. She said that no, it’s probably just that she doesn’t really dwell on her memories so much and has always lived in the moment for the most part, and also that while she has many nice memories from her childhood and remembers it fondly as a whole, she couldn’t really think of anything that would particularly stand out. So I told her that I had the same problem when trying to answer that question in my diary and that it took me a long time to come up with something, to which she reacted with: “Oh, but what sort of childhood you had, it was a nightmare!” Well, I don’t think so at all. I definitely couldn’t call it happy if I were to be truthful, but I think a nightmare would be not only a huge overstatement and taking all the good things for granted. And that was when it dawned on me that the reason why we find it so difficult to think about the best memories from our childhoods is exactly this – that our childhoods weren’t a nightmare. – If they were, it would be easier to think of the few situations that stood out as a lot better than what we’d be used to our life being like as a whole. From what I’ve noticed, people who have gone through extreme poverty, extreme trauma or other major adverse experiences in childhood, often tend to have a handful or even just one memory from their childhood that stands out in their minds as being a lot better than everything else what they’ve been used to. Having a full, warm meal, or someone treating them better than what they’re used to at home, or having a fun outing at school etc. For us, most people these are normal things! Still much appreciated, but absolutely normal. So even though we have many experiences of happy times in our childhood, they naturally don’t stand out so much, because it was normal to have a lot of yummy food, presents for every birthday, playing silly games etc. Etc. Whatever an average kid does. My Mum agreed with me and said that rather than having any particular memories that would stand out very much, when she looks back at her childhood she just collectively remembers all the fun she had with her siblings, the constant presence of her mum at home and how cosy it was, spending time with her best friend etc. Nothing spectacular. It’s quite similar for me, and I wonder how it is for you. 

   Nevertheless, as I said, I did manage to come up with a memory, well, a few memories, that I guess kind of do stand out, or at least based on some things I’ve later experienced and little cues I’ve had in relation to them I believe that they must really stand out for my subconscious for some reason, and in this post, I’ll reminisce a bit about them. 

   They are memories of  the few times when I got to ride home from school in my Dad’s tanker lorry. That was not something that happened often or regularly,  because  generally tanker drivers are not supposed to have passengers, unless it’s a fellow driver and they work shifts. Or at least that’s the case with delivering fuel which is what my Dad does. Officially, anyone who is to ride a tanker has to go through some kind of training so that they’ll know what to do should there be an explosion or something. However, the hours and days of my Dad’s work were always rather unpredictable, and he couldn’t always organise it so that he’d be off work to pick me up from school together with Mum the, hm, conventional way. Especially if something unexpected came up like I was sick or whatever. And Mum was back then too chicken to drive four hours to my school and back on her own. So what they’d sometimes do was they’d take me from school a bit earlier when it fit Dad. Or other times Mum would ask someone from our extended family to go with her and drive, and people often very kindly did it. But there were a couple times when the most viable option was for Dad to take me in the lorry, when he happened to be working somewhere in the area or driving nearby anyway and could logistically squeeze in picking me up. I also think that the restrictions around that must have been a bit different when I was a young child, or perhaps for some reason there was a difference between how different companies where he worked handled it, because when Olek and me were little it would happen slightly more often that he would take us and/or Mum for rides when he had to go somewhere nearby and one time he even took Mum and Olek for quite a long trip. 

   I don’t remember now how many times exactly I rode with him from school in the lorry, maybe three or four, but each time it happened I remember being extremely excited and euphoric about it. In my mind, it had a whole lot of pros to it, though I’m pretty sure that if I had to ride back to school with him in the lorry, I wouldn’t have quite so exciting memories from it, as that would likely mean that we wouldn’t even be able to say goodbye to each other properly and he wouldn’t be able to stay there at all and would have to leave right away. As it was, it was absolutely thrilling. It was usually something that was organised last minute so was a total surprise for me, and while I generally am not a fan of surprises, I was always happy to hear about one like this. Most of the time, particularly if you left school for some official holiday break rather than for a weekend or some personal reasons, the whole procedure of leaving could take really long and I really didn’t like it. Sometimes there were parent-teacher meetings, or parent-group staff meetings or other stuff like that, sometimes if it was something like the end of school year or Christmas break or something like that there would be a school play, and loads of talking and peopling and what not. Especially that my Mum often did feel the need to talk with my staff or teachers a lot, even without a special opportunity, and it was very much mutual because most people really like my Mum and could talk for hours with her. But if I left with my Dad in his lorry, it didn’t matter if it was the end of a school year or whatever, my Dad had a schedule that he had to stick to, so I had to pack in advance, he would usually inform everyone, including myself, at very short notice that he’s going to pick me up and I was to be waiting for him and as soon as he arrived we’d leave. Even if he didn’t have to count his minutes at work, he values his time very much and is a rather impatient person, and he doesn’t have the gift of the gab like my Mum does, nor the gift to listen. And it was just so unusual. No other kid, at least of those that I knew, had a dad who would pick them up in a lorry. So I felt super proud. 

   The first time it happened, I was in the nursery/preschool/whatever you’d call it, so I could have been around six or seven (yes, that blind nursery worked a bit differently and children there were older than you’d normally expect in a nursery, otherwise you’d have to send three-year-olds to a boarding school 😀 ). I believe I had to have an endocrinologist’s appointment and the easier way for my parents to organise transportation home for me was for Dad to pick me up in the lorry on his way back from work, so he didn’t have any fuel in there anymore, as he was meant to go through Warsaw anyway and my school was near Warsaw. He was only able to do this at night though, so I was to wait for him to come. I was usually excited at the mere thought of going home, but being able to stay up very late (which was something I was very much used to doing at home but not really able to do at preschool) and then drive through half of the country in the middle of the night had me properly thrilled. As a kid, I really loved riding long distances, learning about names of different towns and villages, the funnier the better, and, most of all, finding out what different radio stations were out there in different parts of the country. I remember that it all felt very unusual, when I was allowed to stay up, even after our regular staff left and the nightshift lady came  and all the other children fell asleep. I was quietly playing on my bed, with all my bags already packed, and listening to something on headphones and the wait felt really long, but at some point the nightshift lady came in and told me that my Dad had arrived. To my surprise, there was also some other guy there who turned out to be his colleague whom I didn’t know before, and I got a feeling that he ended up really liking me. I also remember that he gave me loads of oranges along the way and kept asking me if I wasn’t sleepy, as I suppose he found that weird that a kid my age wouldn’t be at such time. My Dad was driving, his colleague was sitting in the passenger seat, and I was on the bed. I kept chatting to them about all sorts of things that happened to me at school and whatever my weird Bibiel brain made up and they were laughing. At some point Dad told me that he had a surprise for me and gave me a chocolate bar called Jacek, this is a Polish chocolate bar which I believe is no longer even produced, but as far as I remember it was a type of nougat-flavoured bar. That was the first time I had it and before that I didn’t even know that  such a chocolate bar called Jacek existed and after that I only had it twice. Anyway, those of you who know about my Jackophilia can probably imagine that my euphoria was sky high at that point. I was all like: “WOw, world, people, hear me! There’s a chocolate bar called Jacek, have you ever heard anything more interesting than this?!” At some point though I guess I did end up feeling sleepy ‘cause the next thing I remember my Dad’s colleague had magically disappeared and we were quite close to home. We arrived very early in the morning and Mum was still asleep. Dad told me that it’s a surprise for Mum and that she doesn’t know I’m coming, which I’m pretty sure wasn’t the case but he just wanted to make it fun or something. So he went to load our furnace and told me to ring the doorbell so that Mum would think I came home by myself, and initially she was indeed quite surprised to see me there. 

   The second time I don’t really remember much about, other than I rode with my Dad alone and I think I was in primary by then and I sat next to him for some part of the journey and we were listening to Radio Bis. One incident from that journey that I remember clearly was that at some point the police were checking Dad’s car and I had to hide under blankets and duvets so that they wouldn’t see me. I found that extremely exciting and fun, far more than my Dad for sure, and I remember that it reminded me of how my gran told me that her siblings hid her in some sort of a container full of potatoes during WWII when she was four so that a German soldier wouldn’t see her and when they ended up not seeing me I felt like some sort of great hero. 

   The third time happened much later, I think when I was in my early teens. I remember I was having a properly rotten time at school in all sorts of ways for several weeks as well as a lot of anxiety and when I was coming back to the boarding part, or  however it’s called in English, after classes, and was thinking how could it would be if my Mum could make me a surprise and visit me this weekend or something. Well, then I had lunch, went to my room and was about to start doing my homework but looked at my phone before that and saw that I had several missed calls from Mum. When I called back she said that she and Dad are in his lorry and that I should pack my most essential things because they’d be for me shortly and take me home for the weekend. For a while I really couldn’t believe it. But they did come and I went home with them, despite there wasn’t really such need as there weren’t any holidays approaching and I didn’t have any pressing reason to come home like a medical appointment or something. That trip home was a bit less unusual and surreal because there was Mum, but still, I really enjoyed it as a whole. 

   And the last time that I remember riding back from school in Dad’s lorry was almmost at the end of my stay in that school, I guess I could be around sixteen or something. I can’t remember what was exactly the reason for that, but it had to be something important because I stayed home for a really long time. It was March-April time so it could be Easter, but our Easter breaks weren’t normally particularly long so perhaps I got sick or something, but I don’t remember getting sick during that break and I certainly wasn’t sick with anything when going home. I just remember that, again, I was having a really shitty day at school, though I don’t remember why exactly. I only know that there was some goalball tournament going on  that day or other sport event (goalball is a team sport for the blind) which I didn’t take part in myself but everyone was watching it anyway, and I was quite bored and it was dragging on for ages, and I was making use of all that time by ruminating on whatever shitty stuff was going on. Then I come back and go with my life as normal and at some point when I was in my room talking to my roommate my Dad called me. It was rather unusual for him to call me on his own accord because it was me who had free unlimited calling time set up with him so me calling him paid off more, and we rarely talked in the middle of the day like that unless I was either really bored or had some difficult Geography assignment. So I answered, a little surprised, and he said he’s going to be here literally in five minutes so I better get ready. I was absolutely euphoric. I went to one of our group staff to share the good news and asked her to help me pack but she wouldn’t even believe me. 😀 But I somehow managed to convince her that I was not making it up so she helped me and as soon as I was packed, my Dad was waiting downstairs. AFter the boring and extremely understimulating morning at school, now I was all super giddy and jittery and extremely happy. I could sit next to my Dad high up in the lorry and we chatted about all sorts of stuff. It was already after our relationship has started gradually straining more and more so we weren’t getting along anymore as well as we did when I was younger, but we could still chat about a lot of stuff and still can despite the strain and stuff. I was at first a bit stressed when he told me that we’ll actually need to sleep in the lorry overnight, as I didn’t know how I’d manage with stuff like showering and the like, but in the end I decided, oh well, I don’t even have to do it, I’ll shower when I’ll get home. I would much rather go home straight away than sleep in the car and wait SO long to get to my beautiful little Bibiel room, but in a way sleeping there was also kind of exciting. Dad slept on the passenger’s seat and left his bed for me. But while his sleeping conditions were probably even less enviable, at least he was sleeping, because I guess my Dad can fall asleep anywhere if he’s sufficiently tired. I meanwhile, couldn’t sleep almost at all. I kept wondering how anyone can manage to sleep on such narrow, small bed, if I, being fairly small and thin myself, felt like I was being squeezed between the bed and the ceiling and could barely move comfortably. I wondered how my Dad’s current shift colleague, who is quite obese, can get in and out of here and doesn’t get stuck. All sorts of vehicles were either driving past us, or standing near us with their engines running and once in a while people would be yelling something to each other. And, of course, my Dad was snoring, as if he was competing with all those engines or something. I’ve always liked some background noise while sleeping, but perhaps not SO much. I was also stilll fulll of beans and excitement. So rather than sleeping, I was reading Emily of New Moon, or just thinking about all sorts of things and generally feeling quite happy about life at that very moment. I think I did eventually get some sleep but felt very zombified when Dad woke me up. Which, with help of a few coffees, didn’t last long. (Gosh, I wish I could still have a few coffees in the morning and feel normal afterwards, I miss coffee so much!) We had some quick breakfast and then drove homeward, but first Dad had to tank a barge (it’s entirely possible that I’m using wrong English words here in relation to the whole fuel delivery stuff btw, I’m clueless about it even in Polish). So once we got there, he took me inside of it, and I got to wait for him in a room while he was filling it up and what not. I had my Braille-Sense with me and was reading something on it, and one guy who was working on the barge came over and started chatting to me and wanted to know what this thing was and how it worked, so I kindly explained to him the workings of a Braille-Sense for like half an hour, surprised that he has so much time on his hands at work, and ever so slightly annoyed that he won’t leave me alone to read in peace. He seemed quite impressed though. And then when my Dad was done we drove to where Mum was supposed to pick us up and she picked us up and we rode home. 

   I also rode many more times in my Dad’s various lorries for much shorter distances, but still long enough to feel thrilling. Now however I haven’t done it in years, despite he sometimes asks me, I guess just for the sake of asking, whether I’d like to, when it’s possible for him to do so. But I never do it, as we no longer really have the sort of relationship we had when I was a small kid. Things have changed a lot, and both of us have changed a lot, and the prospect of it no longer feels exciting at all. 

   When thinking about home rides from school with my Dad, however, one more thing always springs to my mind, despite it has nothing to do with lorries, but is a nearly equally pleasant memory. Namely, there was one such time in our family history when my Dad came to take me home from school by train. Unfortunately I no longer remember why exactly he had to do it by train, why not by car. Perhaps it was broken or something? What I do know is that my Mum had to have kidney stones removed and was in hospital, and that was why she, or they both, couldn’t take me home. That was a year before Sofi was born so I must have been nine years old. Ironically, it was Mother’s Day, and our boarding school group staff was planning some sort of meeting with parents and some sort of Mother’s Day celebration I suppose as well. I knew about it in advance that my Dad would come for me on his own and I found the whole idea hilarious that he would be sitting there in a chair, eating cake (he hates cakes and almost everything sweet), watching some sort of Mummy’s Day play and listening to ALL the stuff our boarding school staff had to say, when normally he could barely keep track of in which grades me and Olek were and how old we were and stuff. 😀 Also the idea of my Dad picking me up on his own by train and me coming back home with him by train felt absolutely weird and kind of funny, as I’d always only seen him as the driver, the one who is in charge of things, and you’re hardly in charge of things on a train. So he came, and I’m pretty sure that his patience was put to a great test, because, at least as far as I can tell, that whole meeting thing was really long. Until the last minute, I – who, as you already know, also don’t like such long-winded stuff – was hoping for his temper to break and for him to have a mini meltdown like he often does when Mum’s around and sulkily grumpily leave with me because he ain’t got all day or at least hastily explain to someone that he has to go to be in time for his train, but no. He sat there like a proper daddy, or should we rather say mummy, perfectly calm and collected. I was really relieved when we finally got to go, and I’m sure so was he. The journey wasn’t as very exciting as all the lorry ones, but it was really fun nonetheless. I just remember feeling very excited and happy about it and that I could travel by train with Dad, but no clearer details really. The only thing I remember more clearly was that at some point there was a guy going round selling light beer and I asked my Dad if light beer is anything different than just beer and if not than why call it light beer, and we ended up having a whole discussion about beers, not just light beer, and how different beers are called, and then for some weird reasons we went on to cheeses and their names, but I have no recollection of how the transition from beers to cheeses took place. 😀 Sadly, Dad was not able to provide me much information on what the differences between all them cheeses were in taste. 

   So that’s it, these are my most cherished childhood memories, at least those that I remember and that came to my mind first. 

   How about yours? Do you have any that stand out, or is it also difficult for you to come up with anything? Do you agree with my theory that people with more or less normal or at least not extremely traumatic childhoods have less of an ability or perhaps need to cherish good childhood memories because they have loads of them compared with people with very traumatising childhoods? Would love to hear thoughts, and memories. 🙂 

Griff ft. Sigrid – “Head On Fire”.

   Hey people! 🙂 

   We’ve had a lot of Celtic and/or Welsh music lately, and I thought that for the next few days, we’ll focus more on pop in this series, and I can already tell you that it will be pop oscillating somewhere around Norway. To start this of, I decided to share a single released this year which is the result of collaboration between two very prominent young pop singers – Griff and Sigrid – and which single has got a lot of attention and positive feedback. Sigrid is a singer to whom I’ve been listening for several years and I really like her and her music, she is from Norway and based in the UK and I’ve already shared one song by her last year called Don’t Kill My Vibe. Despite Griff seems to be a very successful artist – at least in her birth country – I don’t think I’ve been familiar with any other of her music, but it seems like I might like her so I’ll definitely be checking her out more thoroughly. I know now though that her full name is Sarah Griffiths, she is of Jamaican descent on her father’s side and Chinese on her mother’s side, and she grew up in Hertfordshire. While there definitely are songs by Sigrid that i like more than this one, I think this one is really cool as well. It sounds good as a whole and is definitely as catchy as a proper hit song should be, while at the same time sounding very interesting. 

Clannad – “Robin, the Hooded Man”.

   Hi guys! 🙂 

   Recently I shared with you a piece called Lady Marian from Clannad’s album Legend, which was the soundtrack for the Robin of Sherwood series, and today I thought I’d share another one, the most famous song from this soundtrack, and the title theme. 

Y Trŵbz – “Dyfaru” (Regret).

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   Today, let’s listen to some Welsh rock, the more that I feel like I haven’t shared anything from Y Trŵbz in a while. For all the newbies here or anyone unfamiliar, Y Trŵbz is a Welsh rock band founded by two brothers Jacob (one of my faza peeps) and Morgan Elwy Williams together with their cousin Tomo Lloyd and friend Gruff Roberts. At some point Jacob decided to focus on other things a bit and stepped back from this project a bit and Mared Williams replaced him as a vocalist, giving the band an equally interesting yet totally new and fresh vibe as rock bands with female vocalists are fairly rare on the Welsh-language music scene. This song also features Mared on vocals and comes from their debut full-length album Yn y Dechrau. 

Llio Rhydderch ft. Tomos Williams – “Cobler Coch o Hengoed” (Red Cobbler From Hengoed).

   Hey people! 🙂 

   For today I have for you a traditional Welsh tune, from Llio Rhydderch’s album Carn Ingli on which she collaborates with Tomos Williams who plays the trumpet and Mark O’Connor on percussion. The Hengoed mentioned in the title of this song is a Welsh village in the county of Glamorgan. 

Gwen Màiri – “Deryn Pur” (Pure Bird).

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   Today I’d like to share with you another piece from Gwen Màiri’s delightful album Mentro, from which I’ve already shared with you several other songs. I absolutely love this piece and how it sounds as a whole. As I’ve mentioned when sharing other songs from this album, we can also hear two guest musicians on it – Jordan Price Williams on cello and Gwilym Bowen Rhys (one of my faza peeps) who in this particular tune plays the shruti box as well as mandolin. – This is a traditional Welsh song, and I’ve already shared a different version of it on here before, sung by another Celtic harpist from Wales – Siân James, which you can find here, along with a translation. 

Fflow – “Diolch am y Tân” (Thank You for the Fire).

   Hey people! 🙂 

   March is always an interesting month on the Welsh-language music scene, because that is when the Cân i Gymru (Song for Wales) competition takes place. This year, it was on 4 March, and today I’d like to share with you one of the competing songs. It was not the winner, nor did it get to second or third place, but I think it’s quite an interesting piece anyway, from a duo who’s totally new to me. Fflow are two ladies from West Wales – Carys Eleri and Branwen Munn. – Carys Eleri is also an actress and I’m pretty sure I had once come across an interview with her in some BBC radio station, don’t remember which one, anyway her name sounds familiar. 

Clannad – “Lady Marian”.

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   Today, i thought we could listen to a piece by Clannad, from their album Legend, which I think is what they are most known for, as that was the soundtrack to the Robin of Sherwood series. This piece is my favourite from this whole soundtrack. 

Bethan Nia – “Ar Lan y Môr” (Beside the Sea).

   Hey guys! 🙂 

   For today I have a very popular Welsh folk song for you, which has been interpreted by lots of different Welsh artists and English-language interpretations exist as well from what I’ve heard. This version is sung and played by Bethan Nia, Welsh harpist and singer, who plays the eos harp, or the nightingale harp, a type of 36-string Welsh folk lever harp which is a sort of cross between a folk lever harp and a concert harp, as while it’s a folk harp, it has more of a concert harp sound to it. Below is an English poetic translation of the lyrics that I found on Wikipedia. 

    Beside the sea white lilies showing
Beside the sea their beauty telling
My true love sleeps within her dwelling

Beside the sea the stones lie scattered
Where tender words in love were uttered 
While all around there grew the lily
And sweetest branches of rosemary

Beside the sea blue pebbles lying
Beside the sea gold flowers glowing
Beside the sea are all things fairest
Beside the sea is found my dearest

Sody – “Whole”.

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   I heard this song for the first time earlier this week and I guess that first time it didn’t make any particular impression on me other than that I thought she had a very good vocal, but it’s been really stuck in my brain ever since, so I’ve listened to it a few more times and now I actually really like it, so thought I’d share it. I think I’ll be checking out more of Sody’s music as well. I already know though that she is from London, in her early twenties and has sung ever since she was a young girl, and she became popular after taking part in the British TeenStar contest. Her stage name comes from her full name which is Sophie Dyson. 

Plu – Diwrnod Cynta’r Gwanwyn” (First Day of Spring).

   Hi people! 🙂 

   So, on Thursday we celebrated Gwilym Bowen Rhys’ new album, and yesterday listened to a song by Trwynau Coch, which is also related to Gwilym in that his dad was a member of that band. I thought why not stay a little bit longer in the world of Gwil-related music, and for today I chose to share with you this lovely, fresh, instrumental piece by Plu, the sibling trio whose music I’ve shared on here many times before and which of course Gwilym is also a part of, alongside his sisters Elan and marged. I think this spring-like piece is also very suitable now, as, at least over here, it definitely feels like spring is on our doorstep and we’ve had some lovely, sunny days. 

Trwynau Coch – “Merch Mewn Miliwn” (Girl in a Million).

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   Yesterday we listened to a song from Gwilym Bowen Rhys’ new album, and I thought today we could have a listen to something by Y Trwynau Coch, which was a band in which Gwilym’s dad – Rhys Harris – was the vocalist. I’ve already shared several songs by Trwynau Coch on here though so I won’t be doing a huge introduction. They were a very popular punk rock band in the 70’s, one of the first bands in this genre I believe to sing in Welsh, which they sometimes took an advantage of and wrote really weird lyrics. Their name means The Red Noses in English.