Travelle – “Sweden”.

Hiya people! 🙂

In the last couple months, I've shared with you a few songs from the Norwegian singer, songwriter and producer Trollguten. I've also mentioned that he's also been more or less known under several other aliases, one of them being Travelle and that I'd like to share with you some music that he's made under this name as well because I actually like it even though I don't really often listen to stuff like this in general. So I figured I'd finally share something by Travelle today. He achieved some popularity  (apparently to some degree in the US) with his debut single Nobody Else in 2016 and since then had been quite prolific until like 2018, but as we haven't heard from him as Travelle since that year I suppose in the end he must have decided that he'd rather focus more on his more cheesy, russ music activity, as he's become popular as russ musician under a different name around the same time,  and his russ stuff is way more popular with his fellow Scandinavians as it seems which is rather sad imo, I'm always saddened to see talented folks wasting their skills. 

Like with his early activity as Trollguten, I like his Travelle music because it feels very genuine. I really like music where you can actually get the idea of the mind and the person behind it and that's what I feel is the case here. And despite, or actually perhaps because of, his lyrics often seeming quite personal and even quite a bit raw sometimes, I guess they still have a lot of potential for being relatable for people and some are even for me. They draw one's attention and they sound very direct and candid. 
The song by him that I want to share today is all about Sweden, so it's little wonder that it drew my attention. 😀 More exactly, it's about shopping in Sweden, from a Norwegian perspective. You may or may not know that life is generally quite pricey in Norway, particularly, as far as I’m aware, stuff like groceries, not to mention alcohol which is heavily taxed. As a result, a lot of Norwegians travel to Sweden to get groceries and all sorts of drugs fand stuff used for gradual, hedonistic self-destruction of human beings, om booze to snuss (the Scandi snuff) to chocolate at cheaper prices. The phenomenon is widely known as Harrytur (Harry trip) in Norway. Every nation has such names that are very strongly linked to some stereotype, like Karen is in the US these days. That's the case with Harry in Norway. So the Norwegian Harry is I believe typically  a middle-aged guy, although I suppose age doesn't really play much of a role here, what's more important is that he's rather unsophisticated and, among other things perceived as unclassy that he does, drives grocery shopping to Sweden. It can also be used as an adjective so you could say that Norwegians shopping in Sweden are very Harry. The female equivalent is apparently Doris, and obviously as a name nerd when I first learned about these Norwegian stereotypes some years ago I was curious why Harry and Doris. Turns out that, just like I believe was the case in Sweden, in 1920’s, Norwegian lower-class parents would give their kids English names, which distinguished them from their upper-class peers whose parents preferred to stick with all the classic slike Ole and Sven. So the upper-class kids called the lower-class kids Harry, kind of collectively I guess. 

When I first heard this song it seriously made me laugh, I like how graphic it is that you can actually imagine the whole thing vividly and I like its humorous feel.

If we were having coffee… #WeekendCoffeeShare

Wow, it feels like I really haven’t done a longer post in a long time. I mean, I published the mini series about emetophobia quite recently, but writing that took me a REALLY long time, a good few months, so that’s probably why it feels so to me, and this is also largely why I haven’t been posting anything longer lately, as I wanted to be done with those vomit posts. 😀

Anyway, I love coffee shares, so thought I’d join

#WeekendCoffeeShare

today. Thanks so much to Natalie for hosting the link-up. 🙂

There’s not a whole lot going on here at the moment, but there are still things that I feel are worth mentioning and filling y’all in on. But first off, let’s get ourselves some drinks, and maybe something more than just a drink. As you may or may not know, I used to be an avid coffee drinker but can no longer drink it quite so carelessly as it seems, however, my Mum was grocery shopping yesterday and she bought loads of iced coffee as both Sofi and me love it a lot, so I’m just having a cup of it right now and it’s delicious. Iced coffee like this one is okay with my brain though, as it’s very weak, which I’m fine with for an iced coffee, but not when it comes to regular, black coffee. Plus I’m having a low-key day and decent anxiety levels so even if it will end up screwing me up a little it wouldn’t be a big deal. So I can make you a cup of this too, if you wish. Otherwise, we have black coffee (also a Swedish whole beans coffee that is actually my Mum’s but I’m sure she wouldn’t mind coffee sharing), loads of different teas, cocoa, and I guess there’s also some orange juice left. We also happen to have loads and loads of Swedish yummilicious candy and other goodies, so there’s lots of good stuff to share. So essentially we can say we’re actually having a proper fika (that’s very basically how you call a coffee break in Sweden, that you take together with friends or colleagues, where you have something small to eat to go with it, just a way of socialising). But how come we suddenly have so much Swedish food around here? Well, come fika with me and you’ll find out. 🙂 Oh, wait, there are also muffins! These are Polish, but I’m sure they’ll work for fika perfectly, if you’d like one.

If we were having coffee, I’d ask each of you how you’ve been doing…?

If we were having coffee, I would fill you in on what’s currently going on with Misha. Misha, as many of you will know, is a very adventurous type, and despite being an exclusively in-door cat, he still has high hopes of conquering the great outdoors someday, and never misses a chance to try and make it happen. If he somehow manages to escape, he’ll then cry his poor little heart out for days or weeks to come because he wants out again. Sometimes we’ll let him out just to make him happy, because we know that this is what he loves the most, but we regret it almost as soon as we do it, because of that endless crying that we all find both excruciatingly annoying and heartbreaking. A couple weeks ago, somehow it had become more difficult than usual to keep Misha outdoors. There were several instances of him sneaking out so that no one even knew when that happened, and we seemed to have little control over it. What surprised us though was that Misha always came back without having to be made to do so, and never left our backyard, which is quite huge so definitely enough for him. That was interesting, as previously, whenever someone would take him out for a little while, it would be really difficult to get him to go back home and he’d run away and could be rather unpredictable. After each of those escapades the crying was even worse, so at some point my Mum decided that, actually, if he’s always been coming back from his adventures so far, we could take the risk and let him go wherever he wants. Misha was very happy, he sniffed the flowers, laid in the sun on the grass, and walked around like a lord examining his property, with Jocky jumping behind him like his faithful servant. As always, he got all magpies agitated and they yelled at him as loud as they could, but he didn’t even bother. That was again a surprise, because normally when we go out with him, he’s a lot more fearful and makes an impression like he’s quite overwhelmed with all the sounds and movements, whereas now he was very majestically placid. Once he even fell asleep on the grass. And then he came back, and slept through the rest of the day, probably totally exhausted with all the stimuli. When he’d wake up, he’d cry again, so we’d let him out, and the whole cycle would repeat. Only, what was quite easy to predict, each time Misha would go further and further. He would still stick to the backyard, but was becoming more and more courageous by the day, and took longer and longer every day to come back. Meanwhile, at home he would only sleep, and very soundly so. If he wasn’t asleep and wasn’t outside, he would cry, louder than before. Finally one such day Misha just spent the whole day outside, and couldn’t be seen from any window, so Mum went out to get him back. The problem was that he flat out refused to go anywhere with her and wanted to run away, but somehow she managed to catch him.

From then on, we became rather apprehensive of letting him out. As a result, we were constantly tortured by his wailing. Day and night. Sometimes the sounds he would make would be so mournful and pitiful that you could cry with him, while at other times it sounded very deliberately rude, annoyed, or plain manipulative. It never ceases to impress me how he can convey such an extremely wide range of emotions with what could seem as just one, wailing sound. My Dad started to threaten that he’s going to kill him someday, Sofi would yell at him if he came near her even if he wasn’t crying, because she was so fed up with him, Mum started to close him in the laundry room for the night, where he likes to be and where we’d hear him a bit less, and I was reluctant to have him in my room, as the only reason for which he seemed to come in here was to keep wailing. Yet we all felt very sorry for him and wanted to help him somehow. Letting him be outside just didn’t seem like the right way to help long-term, and we were short of any other ideas.

Mum and me, however, had been considering for quite a long time to take him to a cat behaviourist to talk about some of his problems, like the constant grooming. So finally it seemed like the time was more than right. Mum already went to that behaviourist with Misha and Sasha (the little kitten we had for a while with whom, or should I say due to whom, we had some problems), and he was very helpful and insightful. So I guess both of us were hoping for something similar this time around. Some insight, about what we might be doing wrong, and what we should do etc… Maybe he would help us understand this little Mish brain a little better.

Yet he didn’t offer us anyy insight. Looking at it in perspective, I don’t really know what he could say and this really doesn’t seem like the sort of thing where talking would help a lot. He simply concluded that there are two ways for Misha to live. One option is that we make a compromise and let Misha go in and out precisely as he pleases. But this isn’t really an option, even by his – the vet’s – standards, as obviously Misha is totally inexperienced when it comes to the outdoor life, while on the other hand he is used to sleeping on and in beds, or wherever he fancies, and it would be difficult and quite cruel to now tell him that he cannot do this anymore and I’m not quite sure how we’d go about making him adhere to this rule. And our house would get real filthy in no time, my pedantic Mum wouldn’t survive that. So there’s just the second option left, that is medication. So what we were ultimately offered was a supply of Prozac, which Misha was to take half a pill daily and he told us to come back in two weeks for a follow-up.

I really didn’t like the idea on so many levels but… what else can you do? As expected, Misha’s appetite worsened a lot, so I had to stock up on his favourite foods so that he’d eat anything. He also became really drowsy, which I didn’t realise was a thing with Prozac nor did the behaviourist tell us that it was possible. Like, he slept ALL the time! He’d hardly wake up to eat or pee. He was also very apathetic. In the short moments between his sleeps, I sometimes picked him up and cuddled. He doesn’t always love to be picked up, but now it was like he didn’t care either way. He didn’t object or tense up as he does when he’s not in the cuddly mood, but neither was he cuddly and affectionate, he would just lay in my arms completely still. But I thought, oh well, his body probably must just get used to it.

But things just continued like that, with no change at all. Both Mum and me tried to give him his favourite foods, both where regular meals and snacks were concerned, but a lot of food just went to waste because he’d just take a bite and would no longer be interested in it. Giving him the pills, which is never an easy thing, was becoming harder every day as he would protest against it more every day, it’s really unpleasant for everyone involved to give him any kind of medication. One day he threw it up almost straight after Mum managed to get him to swallow it. When Misha slept like that all the time, he would never slept cosily as usual, on a bed or in his own bed, or in some other comfy place. Instead he’d usually hide under a bed and clearly didn’t want anyone to see him. One of those days, when he was sleeping under Mum’s bed, she took a peek down there and found him lying there still but his eyes were actually wide open, plus his pupils were still very dilated so apparently it looked quite creepy. The next day Sofi told me the same thing, very surprised, that he’s not sleeping but simply laying like that all the time.

We didn’t go full two weeks, but as the situation wasn’t any better after over a week, I got really frustrated and decided that I don’t want a zombie here, I want my Misha back. I’d rather have him cry twice as loudly and obnoxiously than be just an empty shell of himself. I’m not sure he’s happy with this kind of existence either. Mum told me she was afraid that one day she’d just find him laying somewhere dead. So we wanted to go back to the behaviourist earlier and tell him that yeah, it solved the problem, but now we have no cat. Like, I literally haven’t seen him for a week as he was in that comatous state, even though on a few of these days he actually laid under my bed. There was also no “Hhrrru?”ing, no purrs, no nothing. But since we are now kind of afraid of testing other drugs on our Mishball, in the end Mum simply stopped giving him the Prozac and he isn’t taking anything else instead. He has almost fully recovered by now. Surprisingly, the crying’s not that bad at all either. He does cry a little bit, especially when he sees someone going out, but he also did cry a little bit during his waking minutes on the Prozac, and he’s been crying ever since he’s been with us. But it’s not the same, desperate kind of crying and he isn’t so quick to go out as he was for a couple months prior to this. We decided that we’ll only try some new medication if things go really bad again. Misha is also a little more sociable now, of course within his norm, which is so delightful. It’s really sad that there doesn’t seem to be any good way of lessening his distress.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that we’ve had quite a heatwave lately. The last two days have been a bit cooler, but I’m not expecting this to be the case for very long. It’s also very humid, especially that we live by the river, it’s like even the walls are sweating. 😀 I’m just so very grateful for finally having the AC in my room, as it makes it noticeably easier to function.

If we were having coffee, I’d finally share about where I’ve got all these Swedish sweets from. When Sofi had her birthday in May, I shared with my Swedish penfriend that I ordered a package from Scrummy for Sofi and me. Scrummy is a Polish online shop selling all sorts of sweets, snacks, drinks, instant desserts and what not from other countries, I believe mainly from Asia. And she kindly suggested that she could send us some Swedish ones to test. I had some Swedish candy in Stockholm and also in Ikea, but I still felt rather inexperienced in the matter, and I thought Sofi would be particularly happy, so I jumped at the chance and offered that we could do an exchange and we could send her some Polish sweets as well. When I later told my Mum about it, she asked if my penfriend could send her “that delicious coffee from Sweden”. She drank some whole beans coffee that she considered really great at the hotel where we stayed in Stockholm, but didn’t know the name of it, unfortunately, so I just asked my penfriend if she could find some whole beans, low acidity and high intensity coffee, because these are the sort of coffees my Mum likes. Our post office is really snail-paced with packages both from and to other countries, so it took almost a month to arrive, but we finally got it on Thursday, yay! 🙂 Since we were only talking about “testing”, rather than gluttonising hehe, we were really surprised that it was so huge, even for the two of us, so you can imagine we were really excited! 😀 I actually never got to it any licorice candy in Stockholm, and was always curious if I’d like it or not. Turns out that not really, and Sofi isn’t a fan of it either, but it was very interesting to finally try it. And my Dad, true to his alleged Nordic roots (which as I’m sure I’ve mentioned before I personally don’t really believe are truly Nordic, that’s what my cousins say though) discovered that he really does like it. I’m very curious if he’ll like the salty one as well.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee, or fika, for that matter? 🙂

 

Peg Parnevik – “STHLM Nights”.

Hi guys! 🙂

Continuing with English-language music from Sweden, today I have for you a song that, in my mind, is very strongly associated with my Swedish holidays. I went to Stockholm in 2017 and this song was released a year before. It’s not only because this song talks about Stockholm, but also because, while there, I heard it several times in Sveriges Radio, and it was a real earworm for me at the time. I don’t love it, but it’s quite cool. For Peg Parnevik, Stockholm is the city where she was born, however she has spent a large part of her childhood in Jupiter in Florida. To Swedes, apparently she’s known from a TV series called Parneviks where various celebrities would come to live with her family. She has quite a badass feel to her music, and from what I heard has also struggled with an eating disorder, thus I’m the more willing to share her music with you, since my blog is very much mental health-focused, even though this song has nothing to do with it.

Question of the day.

When was the last time you went on a family holiday? Was it good? Bad? Ugly?

My answer:

We don’t go on holidays that very often. The last proper family holiday we had, I mean a really long and faraway one, was the trip to Stockholm a few years ago and that was terrific albeit exhausting. If you can call something much smaller a family holiday as well, I’d say that my last one was last July. We went to Masuria – me and my parents –
quite spontaneously, it was my Dad’s idea. Due to many things, including poor planning and that my Dad is a really bad travel companion, and my Mum and me feel just as well, if not better, at home, this trip was ultra short and most of it was spent in the car, going back and forth, and then Dad looking around for a battery for his camera, which he never used in the end. 😀 He was also super irritable and irritating all that time. Oh well! I don’t feel the need to go for a holiday every year, I don’t think I lack anything particularly much where I am, and those things I do feel lack of in my life, I won’t suddenly get just because of the change of location most likely.

You? 🙂

Question of the day (18th October).

Hi guys. 🙂

Let’s have some holiday/travel related questions of the day for a while.

What is the furthest you’ve ever been from home?

My answer:

Stockholm, Sweden. And the nearby areas. That was such an awesome holiday! I stayed there for a week.

You? 🙂

Friday nights in Sweden = ‘Fredagsmys’!

Funny that I only heard about a similar thing in Denmark, from a friend who used to live there, – don’t know how they call it there but he told me they like to have it hygge at Friday evenings, eating yummy food and watching the telly – but never knew it’s a thing in Sweden too! What a powerful thing for marketing it must be! But even though, it really sounds good to me to have such a nice and cosy end of the working week and start to the weekend. What do you think. Shouldn’t fredagsmys be introduced to other countries too? 🙂 I’m all for it! It somehow appeals to me despite I am usually not too crazy on all those newly invented traditions created mainly for marketing reasons as I feel like they are often a little artificial.

Watching the Swedes

fredagsmys2

I was just in my local supermarket doing a quick bit of food shopping. Although the place was relatively empty at that time of day,  I noticed that a few of the aisles were the most popular. Throngs of people gathered in the TexMex aisle, the soft drinks aisle and the aisle displaying crisps.

Of course, I thought! It’s Friday! And in Sweden, that means Fredagsmys!

‘Fredagsmys’ is loosely translated as ‘Friday Cosying’, and it is a relatively modern ritual in Sweden established in the 90’s. Prevalent up and down the country, ‘fredagsmys’ is when friends and families gather together to mark the end of the working week. it’s mostly associated with families and children and traditions differ family to family. However,  one common denominator seems to be that food should be easy and quick to make. In other words, Friday night is a huge night for tacos and pizza in Sweden.

Gathering around food for cosy…

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Reasons why I’m learning Swedish.

Hey hey people! 🙂

Do any of you who were already around here a year ago remember my post

Reasons Why I’m Learning Welsh?

Well I got an impression that it got quite a lot of reaction, at least more than I’d suppose it could on not even a month-old blog, and it seemed like people were interested, and some time before I published that post on my Polish blog where even though I had only a couple of readers it also got quite a lot of attention and more that I initially expected. It was also lots of fun for me, so let’s see how it goes with Swedish this year. I actually should write the Swedish post earlier since I started learning Swedish earlier than Welsh, but who cares about chronology nonsense. Not me anyway hahaha.

I’m going to refer to some reasons I posted in the Welsh post because some of the reasons for learning both languages are the same for me. Also they are in no particular order, just as they come to my mind, and I don’t have any particular number that I’m aspiring to, we’ll see how many I can come up with.

1.

Because I just plain like it. What better reason can you have? I like Swedish language, I like Swedish culture, I like Swedes, (even though I don’t always agree with them or support them in all that they do and in all that is going on in their country but I don’t have to, and diversity of views, opinions and ways of doing things is in my opinion, among others, one of things that makes this world interesting 🙂 ). I love the sound of Swedish. My first contact with Swedish was when I was a very little child, we lived in the countryside, on a bit of a hill, so that when there was good weather, or after the storm, and you went upstairs, you could find Swedish radiostations in the radio. And sometimes I listened to them, absolutely hypnotised by the sound of swedish. I didn’t even know for sure whether it’s Swedish,I asked my parents what it is and they said maybe Swedish, maybe Norwegian, maybe Danish, or maybe something else. But I liked to think it was Swedish, and it was Swedish. I could listen to it for hours, and I still can. After some time I watched “The Six Children Of Bullerby” with my Mum. I always loved the book and Mum read it to me countless times before watching that film. She read the subtitles to me so that I knew what they were saying, but I remember that I didn’t really care about it, I didn’t care about what was going on in the film, I just listened to the language and nothing else interested me, it was so beautiful. So then my obsession with Swedish developed fully and when I was 10 years old, Mum found a teacher for me. I was at the integration school back then for two years, not the boarding school, so it was possible for me to learn Swedish at home which I really enjoyed. Unfortunately, we had to face the fact that integration was not for me, and there were also some external factors involved, so I had to go back to the boarding school,which meant there was no point in continuing my swedish lessons as they would be rare and very irregular, and when I was home from school I didn’t really feel like learning anything. I yearned for Swedish terribly though, so had to sort of suppress it, put it deep inside my brain to not have to think about the fact that I can’t learn Swedish to be able to accept it. I succeeded at it, only when I happened to hear something in or about swedish, my brain exploded with longing all over again. But I was able to restart my Swedish when I got out from there. Swedish is one of my most favourite languages, in case of which I feel some sort of pressuring need to be in contact with them, use them, explore them, just be in touch with them as much as possible. It’s a bit strange and hard to explain for someone who doesn’t have, it, it feels like some sort of a strange calling. 😀

   2.

Because one of my music crushes – Cornelis Vreeswijk – lived in Sweden, created music and poems in Swedish, and I usually tend to love my crushes’ languages, since my languages are my fetishes, yeah it might sound crazy but I’ve just had to accept it hahaha. I actually feel like in a way I owe my reunion with the Swedish language to Cornelis. It was in my last year of being in the boarding school, I was at home for some short break, working on some project for school. And in my mind I was hearing a song which my swedish teacher showed to me years ago which we used for learning some new words. I memorised it back then but I didn’t think I could remember it after all those years of not thinking about it, but turns out I did and quite clearly. The song was called “Balladen Om Herr Fredrik Åkare Och Den Söta Fröken Cecilia Lind” (The Ballad About Fredrik Åkare And The Sweet Miss cecilia Lind), which surprisingly I also remember despite the long title, and was a real brainworm, but I didn’t know who did it so I just googled it. And so it was my first conscious contact with Vreeswijk’s music, and I slowly started to get this strange crush despite that actually he wasn’t really my style. If I have a crush, I’m very nosey and want to know everything possible about them, their music, their life, their personality, likes, dislikes, views, whatever. Vreeswijk was quite easy to get a lot of info about, as he was quite (in)famous in his time and still lots of Swedes love him or hate him and he’s well known, but in order to get that info, I had to understand at least basic Swedish. So I had to learn really quickly to quench my thirst, both for Swedish and for knowledge about my crush. And, despite at the beginning before I left school I really suffered for lack of resources, it was speedy, almost miraculous! I could amost feel the words I learned before and forgot coming back to my brain, and the more I listened to Vreeswijk’s music, read and worked on it, the more intense this process of language recovery felt, and it felt gorgeous! Summer holidays came, and passed away, and surprisingly and very dynamically my life changed diametrically and I got out of that school, that’s another story, and quite a yucky one despite a happy ending so I won’t write much about it here. But that paradoxically opened new possibilities before me, and because I had individual education for the next year which was less absorbing, time consuming and anxiety provoking than normally going to school, I had a lot of time to devote myself to my Swedish studies. By sheer luck and a very weird and funny accident my Mum got in touch with my former Swedish teacher so we could start all over again. Well not really all over again, because to huge surprise and amazement of both of us it turned out that my Swedish is actually a bit better and more communicative than those six years ago. 😀 Funny innit? He said that I had to literally skip some stages of development of my Swedish. With time I learned more about Vreeswijk, among others that he migrated to Sweden with his family at the age of 12, with no Swedish at all, but managed to start attending a normal, mainstream Swedish school after a year of learning. And I suddenly felt very competitive. Because wow, he learned Swedish in a year enough to communicate in it properly, and then was fluent like a native as an adult. I want to be like this too! I’m gonna do this! I guess his task was easier than mine as he lived in Sweden, didn’t have much choice about it, and Dutch is much more similar to Swedish than Polish, he was also younger than me which I guess does make a difference. But I guess i accomplished this goal really well. I still am not fully satisfied with my Swedish, but I think I would manage in a Swedish school if I had to. My crush on Vreeswijk has faded, which means that I still have it but it got dominated by my newer crush from Wales – Gwilym Bowen Rhys –  but my crush is my crush so I’m loyal to them all. Vreeswijk was a socialist and had quite controversial views on lots of things, which I most often don’t agree with him about, but I love his lyrics and poems that don’t regard politics and other stuff like that, and my dream is to translate them to Polish. Don’t know how realistic it is, and how realistic and successful could be introducing him to Polish people, but I’d like to try, and I’m still trying, very strenuously, even just for myself.

3.

Because I wanted to read “The Six Bullerby Children” in Swedish. I did. A few times. 🙂

 4.

Because of other Swedish language music. I feel like Welsh music speaks much more to me than Swedish, but they still have loads of great music.

5.

Because so many people think it’s difficult. OK I can agree with you on Welsh, Celtic languages can feel a little abstractive at times, though I am also pretty sure there are more difficult languages. But Swedish isn’t difficult at all. It’s childishly simple. It has some annoying grammar quirks and a few sounds that might be a little challenging, but that’s all. Just because you don’t hear it as often as English, doesn’t mean it’s difficult. I’d risk a statement that it’s easier than English, well my ENglish is better than my Swedish at the moment, but I think overall Swedish is easier.

6.

As I already wrote in reason #1, I like Swedes, I like all of the nations that speak my favourite languages/dialects/accents, and I feel a strange sense of bond with them. Obviously my Polish people are closest to me than any other but I feel really close to all of them. I also want to connect with my people via my languages

7.

To show Swedes that their language is beautiful. I don’t know for sure and I know I shouldn’t generalise but it feels to me like many of them don’t fully appreciate their language, even though Swedish is not like Welsh almost on the verge of extinction. I think we all often take our own mother tongues for granted. All Swedish people speak English, or almost all but I’ve never come across anyone who wouldn’t. It happened to me countless times with Swedes with whom I initiated contact online that I wrote them in Swedish and they wrote to me in English. I know it’s just their kindness and they want to adjust to me (or maybe my Swedish is still so shitty hahaha), but it always sort of frustrated me because it felt like they didn’t want to give me a chance to practice, or maybe felt like Swedish is something exclusive, I don’t know. They were of course happy with it when I told them they can write to me in Swedish, but it felt weird. Same when I was in Stockholm, whenever I couldn’t find a word and automatically used an English one, they would respond to me in English. Ughhhhh. Maybe it’s a little incomprehensible to me because many people in Poland wouldn’t do it. I think I wouldn’t either if I saw a foreigner here and realised that he can speak at least basic Polish. And maybe Swedes just got used to speaking to all non Swedes in English by default because of so many imigrants that are in Sweden who can’t speak Swedish. So I want to show them that their language is also beautiful and worth learning, not so very difficult that a foreigner can’t learn it, and it’s not them who have to make all the effort, the other side can do something too to make the communication easier. If they can learn English, why can’t we learn Swedish.

8.

Because people wouldn’t treat me seriously if I only learned some endangered languages on the verge of extinction about which most people don’t even have the slightest idea. My Dad still thinks I’m making up this whole Welsh learning thing even if I talk to him in Welsh. But Swedish, yes! Swedish is a serious language! You can earn a lot of money in Sweden, you can translate crime novels, you can work in transport or in embassy! Swedish is well respected and recognised. In Welsh post I said that my learning Welsh is a good conversation starter ’cause people always ask either why or what it is or how it sounds. With Swedish, they always say: “Aww, that must be difficult. But you can do lots of things with it.”

9.

Don’t know how anywhere else, but in Poland people really dislike German language. All the WWII associations aside, they just think it’s an ugly, harsh language. And for some stupid reason they think Swedish is as well. Especially older people for some reason. But it’s not. It’s maybe not as softy as French or Italian, it has a character and is, as I like to put it, al dente, but it’s definitely not harsh.

10.

To scare my grandma. Yes I put it already in the welsh post. No my grandma doesn’t really believe that Swedes are pagans too like Welshies, but she has very conservative views and is slightly obsessed with religious matters, and constantly worries about the whole world like Filly-Jonk from “The Moomins”. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a rightist and a Christian as well, but she is a little extreme and, oh well, I just like to make fun of people, even of my tribe. So, any time she sees me and conversation is focused on me/my languages, she asks me what I see in Swedish. “Sweden is such a cold, lawless, self-devastating country of lonely people! Why do you like them so much?” She is very intelligent but can’t comprehend why I like them so much. We often talk about Swedish politics, she asks me whether I know what’s going on there. I’m not always up to date and while I do care about politics, I don’t trace it all the time and for all my favourite countries, but I try to update my knowledge at least once in a while and with Sweden it’s rather easy. So I tell her about some spicier things that I’ve heard, often colourising it, and relish her utter fright.

11.

To develop my brain. For more details on my brain wellness obsession see the Welsh post.

12.

TO scribble in Swedish in my diary. I like my scribbles to be private and in my household no one else speaks Swedish, so I can have a guarantee that if I write in Swedish no one here will get it even if they would find my diary and figure out how to get to it. Also, for me, all of my languages correspond with particular feelings. As I wrote in the Welsh post, for Welsh main ones are anger, enthusiasm, longing and joy. For Swedish it’s happiness, (not like euphoria but just calm, stable, peaceful happiness, contentment and strong pleasure), amusement, surprise, serenity and disappointment/grief/apathy. So I feel particularly inclined to write in Swedish when feeling any of those things. Also, when my crush on Vreeswijk was at its best, I tended to even write to him. You know, if someone is dead, it’s different than when they are alive and don’t know you and don’t care about you. I believe that if there is an afterlife, which I believe there is, those who passed away can know what’s going on on Earth. I was sure that he must know me, and liked to think that he would be proud of me because of my Swedish and all that, and that he likes me. So I took an example from my Mum, who also wrote her diary in form of letters and wrote letters to Cornelis, in Swedish. 😀

13.

To talk to Misha or myself in another language. It was actually my Swedish teacher who suggested to me talking to Misha in Swedish because his point of view was that cats understand every language.

14.

It’s useful! If you can speak Swedish, you can understand at least to some degree Norwegian, especially Bokmål, and even Danish though personally I find Danish rather hard to understand while listening but if I read it I can get at least the mere context. Icelandic is related though not closely enough, but it happens that I also understand some interesting bits and pieces and it’s always nice. Recently I listened to an Icelandic song and understood that “The ocean is cold”, yay for me! 😀 It’s not much definitely but, hey, if I didn’t speak Swedish, I wouldn’t have a clue about it otherwise. One of my favourite languages is Faroese and while it seems to be even further related to Swedish than Icelandic, I believe that once I start learning it, I’m going to be very grateful for my Swedish. I also plan to learn Dutch which is of course not a Scandinavian language but shares some similarities and I can already see it very clearly.

15.

It’s useful not only with Germanic languages. I strongly hope that when it will be the time for me to learn Sami and Finnish, my Swedish will help me, as English helps me with Welsh because all resources are in it. Swedish is always close to Finnish than Polish because of Sweden and Finland being neighbours and influencing each other, and there is a Finnish minority in Sweden and Swedish-speaking Finns in Finland, and the Sami are also a minority in Sweden.

16.

Because “Swenglish” accent is cute, sexy and crasily amasing! I want to know why and how it is the way it is, and what better way could be than learning Swedish, figuring out its phonetics and putting myself in the same position as Swedes.

17.

TO be able to understand what they talk about in those radiostations I was so amazed with as a kid. 😀

18.

To read Swedish books, not only Astrid Lindgren’s. My vocabulary in Swedish is still a bit limited so it takes me a lot of time and effort to read something as long as a book and focus on it and enjoy it, but I try sometimes. I still haven’t read all the Swedish books I’ve got for myself during my trip to Stockholm. Not just because of the language but uhhh scanning sucks and is boring.

19.

TO scare strangers. See the Welsh post for details.

20.

To help me with my anxieties, depression and generally my freaky brain.

21.

Because every language you know gives you a different perspective on different things.

22.

Because if not my Swedish, I wouldn’t go to Stockholm and have so much fun there. I wouldn’t realise that although my anxieties including social anxiety can be really crippling and debilitating, my love for languages is stronger. And because if not Swedish, I would miss some other cool things in life too. Like I wouldn’t meet my friend Jacek from Helsinki. My friendship with him, although a bit stormy and weird, as he was stormy and weird, was also one of the most unusual and interesting things that happened to me, and now that he’s no longer on Earth, Swedish reminds me of his spirit and charisma.

23.

Because I like vikings and Norse mythology. I can like them without learning Swedish but this way it’s more fun. 😀

24.

Because I hope that indeed it will help me in future in some way.

   25.

Because Swedish is so uncomplicated in terms of expressing yourself. I consider myself quite a complex person, with lots of complicated feelings, ideas and complicated things going on, and sometimes I find it difficult and annoying that I can’t seem to be able to express myself properly and adequately, meaning that I can say exactly what I want and how I feel, not have to say that something is either black or white, sounding naturally and not too sublime and sophisticated or silly on the other hand. But in a way I love this trait of Swedish, because sometimes when I feel that my brain goes too complex and I get trapped in it, I like to just sit down and think it through in swedish. Things usually look much simpler then.

Oh my, I wouldn’t think that there will be more reasons than for Welsh! It’s a lot, isn’t it? So i can be sure that it’s worth it! 😍

 

22 Swedish farts

🤣 🤣 🤣 Well oh gosh, what a fart-obsessed country. As a non native English speaker I sometimes wondered a little what Anglophones in Sweden must think of all those farts and sluts and others being so prevalent everywhere and about Swedes being so uninhibited and open about their farting habits, but never analysed it so closely. It’s ridiculous hahahaha. 😀

Watching the Swedes

outfart or infart dr heckle funny wtf signs

One of the fun things about learning a foreign language are the words that are rude, or funny in your own language.

Swedish has a few of them: slut, kräpp, plopp, kock, spurt

But the funniest one is probably the most purile; it is the ever prevailing ‘fart’, especially when you see it on street signs. This is the word that has most visitors to Sweden holding their sides with laughter.

Even after all these years, I can still have a little giggle when I think about the word ‘fart’ and its various usages in Swedish. In Swedish, ‘fart’ can mean a lot of things such as speed, drive, route, pace, spirit, vivacity, rate. But it is when it is put together with another word that it becomes amusing. Childish, I know…but here we go…

  1. utfart – ‘out fart’ – exit from a building
  2. uppfart – ‘up fart’ – driveway

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The National Day of the Sweden Finns

Wow! :O I didn’t know they have their special day too. 🙂 How great! Happy National Day to all Sweden Finns out there in the world! I love both Sweden and Finland, so both these nations and both these languages are dear to me, and I find the Finnish Swedish accent very endearing and cute, one of my favourite Swedish accents or dialects actually.

Watching the Swedes

In Sweden, you couldn’t swing a cat without hitting somebody Finnish or of Finnish heritage. Almost everybody knows somebody with a Finnish connection. In fact, there are so many Finns living in Sweden that they have their own commemorative day. And today is that day.

Today, 24th February is ‘Sverigefinnarnas’ Day, (Sweden Finns Day) – the day that celebrates the roughly half million people who live in Sweden and have Finnish as their mother tongue.

So why are there so many Finns in Sweden?

There has been a long history of emigration between the two countries, especially in the border regions of the north. However, a larger emigration happened when 70,000 young Finnish children were evacuated to Sweden during WW2. 15,000 are believed to have stayed and an unknown number to have returned as adults.

Then, in the 1950s and 1960s the migration from Finland to Sweden was considerable, chiefly…

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Yum Yum Sweden!

Which of these delicious Swedish words you like most? It’s so cool they have so many of them! I think my most favourite is mumsig.
I was only for a week in Sweden, so probably don’t have that much experience with Swedish cuisine as I’d like to, but what I can say is that it seems like there is lots of Swedish food I like, and lots of it that I dislike – I’m not a big fan of fish and some of other strange tastes Swedes like, but some are really interesting.
I got to eat absolutely smarrig ice cream during my stay in Stockholm, I guess I’ve never eaten such fabulous ice cream, and my family seems to think just the same! I also love pepparkakor (Swedish gingerbreads), and Swedish chocolate, I don’t know how it’s called but it has big hazelnuts in it and is just so very chocolatey, which you can’t say about every chocolate in the world, right? I got it here in Poland in Ikea. ANd I love those famous kötbullar (meatballs). Jätte smaskiga!
Have any of you, my lovely readers, tasted some Swedish foods? What were your impressions? Curious to hear. 🙂

Watching the Swedes

Working with many non-Swedes, I often hear the complaint that Swedish food is bland, boring and tasteless. But the truth is that Sweden prides itself on its good food and its number of top-notch, often experimental, restaurants.

The Scandinavian kitchen is full of mouthwatering delights such as warm-smoked salmon, creamed dill potatoes and shellfish by the bucket load. No surprise then that there’s a lot of expressions in the Swedish language for food being delish. When we in English might say ‘yum, yum’ or ‘scrummy’, the Swedes also have a plethora of words to use. Here are a few:

  • Smaskens
  • Smaskig
  • Läcker
  • Mumsig
  • Namnam
  • Gött
  • Smarrig
  • Delikat
  • Skitgott
  • Utsökt

So many foreigners might not think that Swedish food is great – but it’s clear that the Swedes do!

Let me know what Swedish food you think is ‘smarrig’!

Follow me on Instagram #watchingtheswedes

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National day of the Sami – Sweden’s indigenous people

Happy National Day to you, all the great Sami people in Sweden! Any Sami people out there in the blogosphere? I love all the Sami languages, Sami culture, Sami music, I admire the Sami for being so determined and fighting for their own rights and their language(s) still surviving despite all that they’ve been through. So today I’m celebrating with them, and listening to lots of Sami music. And sharing this post so that you all can learn a little bit more about these people. I’m glad that Sami people also have their special day.

Watching the Swedes

Today is theNational Day of Sweden’s indigenous people – the Sami. So I thought I would share this blog again that I posted last year.

Did you know that Sweden has an indigenous people? I know, isn’t that cool?!

Just like Australia has the Aborigine and China has the Pamiri – Sweden has the Sami. For about 5000 years, the Sami people have lived way up in the arctic north of Sweden in thehomeland they call’Sapmi’. Today Sapmi actually covers not only Sweden, but also Norway, Finland and Russia. Historically, the Sami werereferred to as Lapps, but today this is deemed a derogatory term.

Today,February 6th,is the National Day of the Sami. Today,the Sami flag should be flown and the Sami national anthemis sung in the local Sami language.The first time this day was celebrated was in 1993 in Jokkmokk, Sweden.

The Sami are the only indigenous people in…

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The most popular names in Sweden

Yaay! My curiosity has been quenched! Swedish ranking of most popular names in 2018 has just been released a little while ago! And so I reblog the post from Watching The Swedes about most popular of them. It seems like William and Alice are ruling again. Which ones out of all these mentioned here do you like the most? Off to look up the whole statistics now. 😀

Watching the Swedes

Oliver was the most popular name for male newborns in the UK last year. And Olivia was the most popular female name. In London, it was Amelia and Mohammed and in Ireland it was Jack and Emily.

So what about Sweden in 2018? Just-released information from Sweden’s office of statistics give us the following answer.

The most popular top 5 names for male newborns were:

  1. William
  2. Liam
  3. Noah
  4. Lucas
  5. Oliver

In fact, there are 44010 males in Sweden with the name William. And 58 females!

And for newborn girls it was:

  1. Alice
  2. Maja
  3. Lilly
  4. Ella
  5. Wilma

Interestingly, there are 38957 females called Alice in Sweden. And 22 men!

The names Ture, Lias and Amir are the fastest climbing names in the list of boys’ names. And for girls, Hailey och Bianca. The names Sebastian, Neo, Simon, Emelie, Ellinor, Idun and Noomi have left the top 20 list.

If you want…

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Ice, ice baby: 15 Swedish words for ice

I didn’t even know that!… And I thought I can speak Swedish! 😶 It’s fascinating for me, especially that I’ve always been so fascinated with ice!

Watching the Swedes

Currently in the depths of winter, the Swedish landscape is covered in snow and ice.

I previously published a blog about 50 Swedish words for snow. So I became curious about how many words are there to describe ice.

I was surprised to find an enormous number of words. I guess it’s not so surprising for a Nordic country with so many lakes, rivers and waterways that there are many words to describe the different stages and shapes of frozen water.

Here are 15 of the words I found: 15 words for ice.

  1. Is – the standard word for ice
  2. Blankis – ice that shines like a mirror
  3. Nyis – ice that’s only a couple of centimeters thick and transparent
  4. Fast is – thick ice, often not transparent
  5. Issörja – when the air is cold but the water is moving, a kind of ice slop forms
  6. Tallrikis – plates of…

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Question of the day.

What’s the most beautiful place you’ve ever been?

My answer:

The most beautiful? Hmmm… I’m sure I’ve been to many beautiful places, although it’s hard to recall them now. I consider Stockholm very beautiful, because I just love Sweden, even that little piece of Sweden I’ve been to. Also when I think of beautiful places I think about one of the beaches we’ve been to, it’s in one of national parks and it’s really beautiful there. The village is called Smołdzino, and it is a very small, poor village, but very clean and quiet, and the sea and the beach seems cleaner than anywhere else I’ve been to, even though it’s the same sea as anywhere else in Poland. It was a very nice place. I also consider my room a beautiful place simply because it’s a safe space for me. It’s a bit messy though so I guess I’m not objective. 😀

How about you? 🙂

Why Swedes celebrate their names

I’ve always been curious why actually Swedes celebrate names, since they are mostly protestants, and now I finally know! 😀 As Poland is a Catholic country, we also have this tradition here, although I have an impression it’s generally better organised in Sweden, because we don’t really have a universal calendar and even a single calendar can be very repetitive and some names may have multiple days while others are mentioned hardly anywhere despite being used and sometimes it can lead to quite funny situations, or just to a bit of a chaos. As both a Christian and a name geek , I think in a way celebrating your name’s day can be even more fun than birthday. And I was quite surprised to see that Emilia’s nameday in Sweden is 14 November, when in Poland it’s Emil’s day. Though it makes more sense than making separate days for Emil and Emilia. If you aren’t familiar with this tradition, or like me, love Sweden, or names, I highly recommend you reading this post. 🙂

Watching the Swedes

Today is Svea’s Name’s Day. And October 8th is my Name’s Day. Well, not quite….but almost. It is Nils. And since I’m called Neil, well, I take Nils as my day.

Some of you might be wondering what the hell I’m talking about. What is a ‘Name’s Day’? Well, it’s like this. In Sweden, every day has a name, sometimes two. And if your name happens to be represented in this way in the calender, then you can celebrate your day. Strange? Maybe. Unusual? Not really.

A Name’s Day is actually a tradition in lots of countries such as Bulgaria, Croatia and Ukraine. According to Wiki, the custom originated with the Christian calendar of saints: believers named after a saint would celebrate that saint’s feast day. In Sweden, however, there is no longer any explicit connection to Christianity. It’s been a tradition since the Middle Ages and started…

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Let the light in – Lucia morning in Sweden

I’ve always thought that st. Lucia day celebrations in sweden are such a beautiful and interesting tradition, I think we should steal it and have in Poland too! Anyway, I thought I’d reblog this post for you my readers so that those of you who might not know about this holiday could learn a bit about it. We don’t have any particular celebrations of saint Lucia here in Poland as I said, although she is quite well known as a patron saint of the blind. And we do have gingerbreads at many homes at this time of year because Christmas is coming, but we are more restrained than Swedes and no one eats them yet. 😀

Watching the Swedes

A Chinese proverb says this,

‘It’s better to light a candle than to curse the darkness’.

Never was this more true than today. Lucia day. At the darkest time of the year, when we all are drained by the black mornings and afternoons in Sweden, Lucia pays us a visit. With candles in her hair and surrounded by her handmaidens and boys in a procession, Lucia shines light into the dark depths of our spirits. And slowly, slowly, the day awakens.

I love Lucia. Long live Lucia!

Lucia traditions are celebrated in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Italy, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Malta, Bosnia, Bavaria, Croatia, Slovakia and St. Lucia, West Indies. But where does she come from and why is she one of the few Saint’s days celebrated in Sweden?

Santa Lucia is believed to have been a Sicilian saint who suffered a martyr’s death in Syracuse, Sicily around AD 310…

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Question of the day.

When was the last time you went on vacation? Where did you go?

My answer:

Oh, that was soo so brilliant! It was last year. Last summer, in July. I went to Stockholm. It was something that I dreamt of for years, and my Dad promised me many times that this time we’ll go to Sweden in summer for sure, and finally it came true last year. Sweden is among my favourite countries and I love Swedish language and Swedish people and so I’m always happy to speak Swedish to someone if I can practice, so I always wanted to go to Sweden. However, when it finally became a real and very close possibility, it started to feel also very scary. ‘Cause, you know, I’d have to be a translator for three people, in a way I’d have to be in charge of things ’cause I am the one in our family who speaks Swedish and English. And if you’re a sociophobic, it’s quite a scary prospect. Plus, I was also terrified about how we’re gonna get there. Because of my other anxieties, my labyrinthum not always working as it should and othere stuff, flying or sailing feels rather challenging, I get dizy and motion sickand stuff and it’s just tough. So, I think I was twice as scared as I was happy. What if it won’t go well? I wouldn’t like to have bad memories from one of my favourite places in the world. I felt like if my dreams are going to turn into a disappointment, if my anxieties will kick in, I’d better not go anywhere and just leave Sweden and all in the sphere of my dreams. But I still knew I’m gonna go there, because it felt even more awful if I missed on such a chance. And, yeah, it was tough. Very tough and exhausting. But it also was brilliant, as I said. And very, very rewarding. Sometimes as I think about it I wonder how I actually did it – all that talking and smalltalking to people, even very random people, but somehow I did. I’ve improved my Swedish, was able to use some English, and even my little rusty bits of Finnish, and get in some more Finnish, as I’ve met a woman from Finland. I’ve also fully realised something I’d only supposed before, that I’m that little bit more confident and comfortable talking to people when I do it in other languages, I guess because my willing to use it, to improve it and have contact with it is that little bit stronger than my anxiety. That’s weird, the more that Polish is also one of my favourite tongues obviously, but there’s nothing you can work on with your mother tongue, is there? And I’ve read somewhere recently that it’s common that people are more extroverted in their second, third, etc. language just because if they want to develop it, they need to communicate more.

I visited my crush Cornelis Vreeswijk’s grave, which was a very emotional event for me, we visited his park, we’d seen lots of beautiful views and historical places in the old town, ate yummy food, even tried salted caramel, which we didn’t like, but which was a funny experience. And man I’ve never eaten even half as yummy icecream as I did in the old town. I also visited a shop with minerals and extended my collection of gem stones with quite a few new ones from different countries around the world, and had a chat with the shop owner, even though he was from Scania, and I’m usually not that good at understanding the Scanian, but there’s always English, and somehow we got along. And I also have lots of other lovely souvenirs from Stockholm, like many books for children in Swedish – oh gosh I had so much scanning, I will think twice next time before I’ll ever again have a desire to buy a half of a bookshop. And the only thing I regret – well apart from those loads of scanning afterwards – is that we haven’t seen more of Sweden during that time, just Stockholm and nearby areas, and still not the whole Stockholm, we’d been there just for a week. I just enjoyed it so much. And, guess what? There is a slight chance I’ll go to Sweden this year too. There are always discounts on ferries to Sweden in summer so lots of people go even just for a little ferry trip to Karlskrona if nothing more. My feelings about that are very, very mixed, but deep down I know I’d love it.

How about your last vacation? Did you like it? 🙂

Question of the day.

Do you have plans to travel? Where do you want to go?

My answer:

We as a family don’t travel that much, our lifestyle or life circumstances or however you want to call it doesn’t really let us travel very often or far, and we are rather homebodies, at least most of us, but still we do like travels, especially my Dad who is a tank driver. Every time summer holidays are coming he tells us he wants to go there and there or tells us this year we’ll go there, but it doesn’t always come true. He even has been romising me for about seven years that this summer we’ll go to Sweden, but it happened just last year. It’s not like he didn’t want to make it true or like I have any claims about that, that’s just how the life goes and I’m glad we finally did it.

So yes, we do have plans to travel. But now it’s more my Mum who started them, not Dad. My Mum is at least as much knackered by this school year as I am, ’cause she has a double trouble, with me and my brother, as we are both finishing this year. Plus Zofijka’s school affairs and dramas aren’t helping. So she (my Mum, not Zofijka) is dreaming that finally when we’re finished, we’ll go somewhere far away, or at least will visit many places. She even suggested to me that we should both go to Wales straight after my exams, just we both, but for various reasons I don’t think this is going to happen this year, although I would love it to happen. Some of our realistic plans include going to some thermal pool. We visited one in Oravica in Slovenia years ago and we were chuffed, it was so brilliant. Then there is festival of minerals somewhere in Silesia where I’d like to go and my Mum proposed it to me. And at the end of August there is a whisky festival somewhere nearby and I’d like to go there too with my Mum, as we both like whisky and for me it is the only kind alcohol I accept, of course not like I don’t accept drinking other kinds of alcohol by other people around me or anything, just this is the only kind of alcohol I drink. 😀 I am not a big big enthusiast and actually now I drink very rarely because even after just a glass of any kind of alcohol drink I’ve ever had I can get nasty side effects and my Mum too so I guess we’re kind of allergic or something. Plus I don’t drink outside of the cosiness of my own home as it makes my anxiety higher. Anyway, the main reason I want to go there is I want to see if they have Welsh Penderyn, I’d love to taste Welsh whisky. My Welsh friend told me he’ll get me a bottle when he comes and visits me, but since sadly we aren’t in touch anymore it’s rather unlikely to happen. :// And I’d love to get some Grand MCNish to have it for some special occassions. Mmmmm… 🙂

As for where I want to go in general, like in some more distant future, there are countries speaking my favourite languages. Or dialects, or accents, whatever. I’d love to go to the UK. I like Britain very much in general as well as the British people and British accents and lots of other things about this country, I have quite a few pen pals from England and would love to meet with at least some of them. Then there is so many Celtic stuff in Great Britain. And there is Wales. So I could practice Welsh language, hear more of Welsh accents, and see how it is in the north, pick up some Wenglish. My Mum loves Great Britain and Wales too, because it’s beautiful, so she could see some of the views and castles and all. And there is my current crush, Gwilym Bowen Rhys. Don’t think I’d meet him, but anyway, he lives there, you know…

Then there is Scotland and all that Scottish stuff, Scottish whisky, Scottish accents (maybe I’d finally learn how to at least imitate it a bit more convincingly, I am an accent freak and like to mimick different accents and pick up the differences pretty quickly, but I feel like my Scottish accent is particularly poor). And oh gosh I’d love to go to the highlands, hear Scottish Gaelic, my Mum could see some more views. And there is Scots language as well. It’s funny, well I consider it funny for some reason, but it’s beautiful. And then there is Northern Ireland and all those Northern Irish accents and Ulster Scots language (I’m curious whether actually there is anyone using it there in Ulster) and Irish Gaelic and everything Celtic. Oh, I almost forgot! The Isle of Man. I’ve heard so little about it. People say it’s boring, but I think if it was under the influence of both Vikings and Celts… how can it be boring!? I definitely need to hear more Manx, get to know more Manx music. I don’t know much of it sadly. I want someone kind and competent to tell me what does the word “mish” mean in this mysterious language…

The next country I’d like to go to is Ireland. I love it too, for all the Celtic things they have there, and for Enya, who was my first crush, etc…

Another country I’d like to see are the Netherlands. This is the home to my last crush Cornelis Vreeswijk, I’d like to hear more of this fantastic language, to see the areas where Cornelis grew up. And there is Friesland and their underestimated, beautiful language.

Then I’d like to visit Finland. Their language is so fabulous. They are so fabulous people. I like their way of being and can relate to it at least as much as to Brits’. Swedish Finnish accent is so cute and funny, yes, that’s how I perceive it, 😀 if Finnish wasn’t so beautiful, I could talk to them only in Swedish, but as Finnish is so great, I’d at least try to use my poor Finnish skills and grab some more Finnish expressions, plus not everyone talks Swedish there, so English would be necessary as well. They have Lappland, I wan’t to see it too. And hear more of the Sami language. I’m sure it would be so exciting. Also I’d love to see how that Finnish harp – kantele – looks like. It sounds so different from “normal” harp, or Celtic harp(s), that I have an impression it must look very different.

And Faroe Islands. I wanna know, is it true what my uncle says, that actually there are so few people there that they are all family or know each other through their family members? My uncle is a saylor, his chief is Faroese and he often sails to Faroe Islands, but I don’t believe it. What a pity he isn’t more eloquent and more curious about the world so he could tell me more about this country. 😦 And Faroese language obviously. Plus, I love their singer, Eivor Palsdóttir. If everyone knows each other there at least through their family members, maybe I could meet her? 😀

And last, but not least. Sweden, again! I want to see more of Sweden, not only Stockholm and its neighbourhood. I wanna see Luleå. More of the places associated with Cornelis Vreeswijk (he migrated from Netherlands and lived in Sweden). I want to see more of their fabulous nature. There’s so much to see there!

So that’s the end of my list, I suppose.

How about your plans, for near or more distant future? 🙂