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Author Archives: Lady Octavia

All Quiet on the Western Front

It’s been a while, wonderful people of the internet. I’m guessing some of you might be wondering what happened to me. In truth, everything and nothing, (although that might sound a bit bizarre to the majority of people).

A month ago my invasion of Sweden ended. I returned to the UK, having completed a couple of courses at the University of Gothenburg as well as having made more friends than I could have imagined. My final days in Sweden were wonderful: I met up with all of my various groups of friends and had meals and BBQs and laughed and joked. A great many signed my Sweden Journal – A book which contains memories very much in the vein of this blog, although it has spaces saved for various events which haven’t been detailed online.

Why did I return to the UK, you ask? It was a practical decision really: My funds were beginning to dwindle and I no longer had any courses at the University with which to justify staying in Sweden. At times I had wanted to leave, and then at others I wished dearly that I could stay. There are a lot of people I’m going to miss – people I DO miss, and hopefully, I’ll be back again some day.

What am I doing in the UK? Well, actually, I’ve moved back to the town I lived in in Berkshire before I moved to Sweden. It’s not the best part of town ( I’ll be honest) but my house is alright. Come September I start a new job in a school, which will be great. It’s different from what I did before, and in honesty I’m kind of nervous about it, but at the same time I think I’m probably going to love it!

Am I just abandoning my steampunks? Definitely not. I hope to be involved in everything that is going on – I just won’t be able to go to their next party in January as it’s during term time and I can’t justify a day off then. As it is Asylum is going to be… interesting.


At any rate: I’m back in the UK, I have sausages, and I’m plotting the future. This probably marks pretty much the end of this blog, unless/until I try to reattempt another ‘invasion’ of Sweden. I’ll be around on the internet, probably invading other corners and/or starting other blogs. I’m quite active on Tumblr, but I like to keep my tumblr page rather under wraps, so don’t be offended if I don’t reveal my tumblr identity to you!

Au revoir


Swedish Scrabble – Alfapet

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Something Swedish

Whenever I teach an English course I always suggest different ways to practice the second language casually at home:

1) Read books you have read before in your own language
2) Read magazines or blogs about topics you’re interested in
3) Read or watch the news in your second language
4) Watch TV or movies with subtitles
5) Listen to music or audio books
6) Play games

Since I’ve moved to Sweden and started learning Swedish I have tried to integrate the language into my day to day life by doing as many of these things as possible. I especially like to use my Swedish while playing games – it makes language learning more fun, social and casual:
(As a sidenote: board games in Sweden are way more expensive than in the U.S., 300-500kr in stores, depending on the game)
I’ve always enjoyed Scrabble, so I figured: What better way…

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Hej internet!

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I know, I’ve been radio-silent for ages now. Sorry! It has been a bit… well – chaotic. Good chaotic, but chaotic nonetheless.

My time in Sweden has almost come to an end. I have around one month left now. I’m planning to update with some of the things I have done that I haven’t really done blogposts about, but I don’t know exactly when I’ll put them live.

However, without any further ado, I can give you a brief rundown of the last few days at the very least.

May came to visit from the UK on Thursday. She’s from Belfast, and has an awesome accent. On Friday we showed her Gothenburg, and on our way through town we walked straight past the wonderful Bill Bailey! The plan on Saturday was to go to Slottsskogen and meet the moose. However, it turned out that Saturday was Goteborgsvarvet, which is basically the Gothenburg Half Marathon, which starts and finishes at Slottsskogen. Instead, I took her through town and we watched the runners for a bit, eventually finding our way to the ice-cream stand at Kungsportsplatsen. Whilst we were up at Gotaplatsen, I tried my hand at simultaneous translation from swedish to english of the things the people on the big screen were talking about. I managed a few chunks, but it’s really really hard.

Saturday night was the Steampunk party, which I must say was absolutely wonderful. I loved it! We had over a hundred people there, and a lot of them were either my steampunk friends or people who knew me via the facebook group. A lot of people were from the Alingsås Konvent, but there were plenty of new faces too, which made me very excited. I ran the tea duelling, and there was free tea.
We had fire-eaters and circus acts, and some lovely DJs, By the time we got home it was already light. Unfortunately I had a fight with the pavement on the way home (I have zero balance at the moment) and I totally ripped up my knees and my right foot, so I currently have massive bruises and biiiig grazes all over them.

On sunday we actually *did* go to Slottsskogen, and we saw the moose, and it was fun. We also went to visit Emil’s parents and tried waffles, which I will admit, I have never eaten before (don’t judge me ok? Don’t know why but they just hadn’t happened before). Oh, and we showed her Repo! the genetic opera.

May went home yesterday after a day full of wandering gothenburg a little more and yet more ice cream. And then I had Game, which I had totally forgotten about until the last minute. So yep. Things and stuff.

On a side note, I have two take-home exams to write. I should probably get on with those at some point today…

10 Things About Living Abroad: No Turning Back

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This is all true. All of it.

Thought Catalog


Moving around the world teaches you many things. It isn’t for everyone. It takes a special type of person to be able to do what we do. Packing up all your things into two carry-on bags and two checked pieces of luggage is struggles in itself, and to generalize imagine being a woman! I could only bring 10 pairs of shoes! Your mother will go through that luggage and make you narrow it down to seven cardigans instead of 17 and she will remind you that those shorts still don’t fit and haven’t fit for 3 years, you should probably just let them go. Along with letting those shorts go you are also letting go of friendships, relationships, comfort.

A wise man told me that the reason we move to new countries is because we are either running from or running to something. I laughed and thought he was…

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Gothcon, Påsk, Oslo och andra saker

The last few weeks have been insanely busy, which is part of the reason for my lack of posts.

Easter this year was mostly marked by the existence of Gothcon – the biggest (or one of them) and oldest tabletop gaming convention in Sweden. I spent my weekend helping to run the steampunk room, with pretty much every waking moment spent in our makeshift airship in one of the rooms. We did crafting, fika, tea-duelling and other such things, and it was brilliant fun. I also got the opportunity to watch ‘Shoggoth on the roof’ – a version of fiddler on the roof which includes Cthulu, who can effectively be described as the apocalyptic monster that you had nightmares about as a kid (if you’re not someone with any knowledge of Lovecraft)

I also visited Oslo last week with Hayley and the Emil. We managed to do the Viking Ship museum, the Historical Museum, the palace, the opera house, and we even managed to see the parliament – all on one day-trip on foot and one boat. Loved it, but Gothenburg is nicer.

Yesterday I went on a field-trip with the university to several sites of significance for my viking course. We went to Vanhem and Skara, and i went up the terrifying staircase to the gallery and looked down twenty metres to the floor with only a thin railing there. terrifying but very pretty. the others went up the tower, but that was too much for me – i’m mildly claustrophobic as well as being – not so much afraid of heights, but afraid of depths, and I have a severe dislike of staircases which goes back so far it’s not worth thinking about. Nevertheless – i got some good photographs.

What else? I’ve been gaming, applying for jobs in the UK, studying, learning Swedish, attempting to write an essay, failing to write an essay, watching game of thrones…

Not the best update ever, but at least, I hope, more interesting than nothing! I’ll try to post up some photos soon.