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Tag Archives: Cornwall

Still weathering the storm

I thought Cornwall had seen the last of the storms really when I posted last week about them, but blimey – the damage has gotten even worse since! Even in my University town of Reading the weather is causing chaos, as the Thames flooding is worse than I’ve seen in years- if ever! The weather’s even started affecting even further north – Blackpool – where my remaining Aunt lives, is under siege from the weather too now! The beach at Perranporth is down to beachrock, and Portreath beach looks nothing like it used to, according to my sources.

Not only is the weather awful, but my nan on dad’s side is in hospital with a chest infection. She’s been ill for most of the past week and Mum’s spent the whole time at hers diligently looking after her. Hopefully she’ll feel better soon.I’m quite worried, but at the same time glad she’s finally in hospital as she will get better there.

In more swedocentric news, Today has been a very productive day. I finally managed to send off my application for my right of residence for study certificate; I’ve written and submitted a blogpost as a guest blogger for another blog ( based on steampunk – will link when/if it is published) and I have also filled in my postal vote form and had it countersigned by a fellow Brit. Furthermore, I had a delightful conversation with said Brit about Myer-Briggs personality types and social media ( although those were technically two separate yet intertwined conversations – thanks Martin!) All in all, a very good day.

Yesterday was quite interesting as well. We had Renskav with mushrooms for dinner and I made a Kvarg (Quark in the UK) chocolate Mousse as desert. Emil and I both found it hilarious that we were eating moose and reindeer as a theme. Needless to say, Gothenburg isn’t improving the level of our sense of humour much – it’s still as silly as ever.

Anything else? Oh! Emil’s been off work ill today. It looks likely he’ll be off tomorrow too. I’m still planning on getting up early to get things done and to hopefully get to have a bit of time out in the light. Getting up early really does seem to make the difference mood-wise!

 

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Hemma igen

Today has been a strange day.

As you all know, I’m back in the UK. I arrived on Monday in Reading, and then have since made my way down to Cornwall. Yesterday I met up with a very old friend I haven’t seen in a few years, and had a nice time. We had lunch-ish/fika at a little cafe in Truro and put the world to rights, as well as discussing our increasing irritation with the world. It had been far too long.

Today however has been a bit sad. My sister’s dog has been ill for most of the last week and today lost her fight. It was also my sister’s daughter’s birthday, as well as my older brother’s, and so the day has felt somewhat odd, punctuated by teary-eyed visits and frantic phone-calls. We finished putting up the Christmas decorations in my house today as well, and so the house looks cheery, even if my cheer has been somewhat dampened again. Perhaps it can be reignited by visiting friends the next few days. I certainly hope so.

However, on a more positive note, I’ve accepted my university places and will be back in Sweden in Mid-January for another crack at it all. People have already begun asking me what made me accept, and I think i can pinpoint it to one moment on Tuesday, whilst I was wandering around Reading: I’ve gotten so used to not understanding everything that my brain instantly reaches for any English phrases I understand. Trouble is, that this resulted in an overload on Tuesday. I literally was unable to concentrate on anything.

And then I found it: Mecca, Heaven, Nirvana – call it what you will. I found the one place in Reading where I could shelter from the english and find myself amongst the familiarity of advent stars and useful stuff… that’s right. Reverse culture shock sent me to Clas Ohlson for a bit of sanity. I’m not even joking. I lasted less than 48 hours in the UK before I started missing Sweden.

I had a similar reaction on going into the big Tesco in Redruth as well yesterday: too much English, too many things missing, a pang of  excitement when I found the Arla symbol on Flora butter ( Arla butter is called flora here – we discussed this when I moved to Sweden first off!) It felt very odd.

Also, bizarrely enough, whilst when i was in sweden I measured prices in Pounds, here I’ve started translating to Krona. I’m not sure why. I think that might also be part of this culture shock/readjustment thing. It’s definitely strange though. Hopefully it’ll improve.

Now, now that I’ve signed up well and truly for my University courses, I’ve just got to wait for the messages to come through. I hope they don’t want me there before the 17th January, as it’s not happening!

Within the next few days I’ll try to post up some stuff about English Christmas, because it’s nice to contrast things. I’m going to attempt to make some knäck too, so keep your eyes peeled for my family’s verdict on that, however, I’ve got a very busy few days coming up, so please – keep your eyes peeled and your ear to the ground. I’ll blog when there’s a moment free!

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Helgen på Asylum – del 2

After we had eaten, we got ready for the evening’s entertainment: The Major’s Soiree. This was happening up at The Venue at 9 so we had a couple of hours to unpack, get ready and generally do stuff. I wore my pith helmet and my blue corset and black skirt. I was incredibly comfortable.

 

Upon our arrival at the venue we went and got a few drinks and caught up with a few old friends, including Martin and his monkey ( he has a monkey toy – long story). It was lovely to catch up with Martin, who I have barely seen since Camber in March. Emil went off to natter and came back looking very excited with a rather familiar-looking young man dressed as Steampunk Phantom in tow. Emil had discovered that this particular young man was from the same home town as me. The moment the young man, Ethan, told me where he had lived most of his life, it clicked: I was in his brother’s class at primary school! Not only was this the case, but my big sister had been a teaching assistant at another school of his brother’s, and Ethan was close friends with my Nephew.

 

Needless to say, this was living proof to all those present of the fact that Cornwall is a very small place.

 

Now That's What I Call Steampunk! Volume 1

Now That’s What I Call Steampunk! Volume 1 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

There were a lot more seats this year than last year as the comedy night and The Men were playing at the Assembly rooms, meaning that a lot of people went there instead, however, I very much enjoyed the show. The Mentalism show was wonderful, if slightly more terrifying than I had ever imagined it could be, and watching James Richardson-Brown doing his strong-man routine was incredibly impressive. I can testify that that was a real frying pan, having knocked it very hard to make it clang. It eventually ended up rolled up into a scoop!  He also pulled apart a steel chain and folded a steel bar in half. James made a reference to Emil’s lateness on-stage and told everyone about his lateness, which was quite amusing too! The Cogkneys were fun to watch too, but i think the young Niall the Steamager was one of the big highlights, and was beloved by all! Count Rostovs jokes were as terrible as ever and Kit Cox’s performance was also amusing. We returned to the hotel afterwards happy and tired.

 

Saturday dawned bright and early and we made our way to wetherspoons for breakfast, in full steam. I wore my Retro-archaeologist outfit – inspired by Dr Geof’s patches (available from The Island of Dr Geof). I showed him the outfit, and he found it amusing, which was quite nice. We also met up with Sarah and Owen from Reading and had a bit of a natter. It was enjoyable!

 

I also went shopping on Saturday, but didn’t buy much, and saw a few things on my travels, I nattered to people and had a chat with one of the people involved with Clockwork Watch. It was definitely interesting. Abi spent the time squeeing and talking to people, and enjoyed herself muchly from the discussions we had.

 

On Saturday night we went to the burlesque, which was fantastic, and I made friends with more people again. It was a fantastic show. We waited around with Ethan until his dad came to pick him up, and said our goodbyes to Ethan, who was leaving early on Sunday. Whilst waiting, I had a chat to Lesley and friend, who had a massive mug of tea. She gave me a hug because of my love of tea. It was wondrous!

 

At breakfast on Sunday, one of the Locals asked what exactly all the victorian stuff was about, and we politely explained. They seemed genuinely interested and wished that we enjoyed our weekend, which was lovely.

 

On the Sunday I went to the First Tea Company Court Marshal, which turned out to be more hilarious than expected. Due to the weather and suchlike, it relocated to the pub, which was taken over by probably over a hundred Steampunks for the court marshalling of Lady Raygun. It turned into an attempted coup by the lady, who attempted to hold Dr Geof in Contempt of his Own Court because he was absent. She failed when he returned and made an impassioned speech about the First tea company being a consensual military organisation and that he would never Court marshal people without their own consent! At this point, he was made First Tea Lord in Perpetuity, and the question of his deposition was never to be seen again. The original court marshal then went ahead, but the result was deferred until next year, after a cup of tea. It was the sort of delightful chaos that can only come from the FTC. Loved it. I also love my shiney new badge that i received as a result of being there at the right time to get one 🙂

 

Sunday evening was the Dead Dog party. I felt curiously faint on Sunday for some reason – not sure exactly why, and kept getting dizzy. The sausage and mash was good though, and the charity auction was a lot of fun – Emil and I won a bid for a beautiful collection of Shineys. Not sure what happened about the Steampunk quiz, but hey – the dancing was fun, as were the conversations i had with people. I must apologise to Major Tink and Sam, both people involved in the organisation of Asylum, for professing tiredness when they were a billion times more exhausted than I could ever know. Between them, though, they have restored my faith in humanity.  It is impossible to describe how much I needed that.

 

And then it was over. On Monday morning we went for our last spoons breakfast and signed out our stuff. the Locals from the day before were there, and asked us if we’d enjoyed ourselves. More than they could ever know was the answer.

 

Next part: From Lincoln to Reading to Sweden!

 

 

 

En besökare från Sverige

The Emil has been here for a visit for the last week. It was wonderful to have him here to stay, and very exciting because we have now marked it down to just one month until I move to Sweden! We had quite a few conversations in half-Swedish, which was encouraging, because whenever he didn’t understand what i said, it was usually because he wasn’t expecting me to say what i did, and so thought i was saying it wrong ( only to realise when i switched to English) that I was totally right ^^.

English: Inside the Humid Tropics Biome at the...

At any rate, we visited some lovely places this week to make the most of his time down in sunny Cornwall. Originally we were planning to visit The Eden Project but due to extreme laziness and the expense we ended up putting it off until another occasion.

English: Sunset at Portreath

English: Sunset at Portreath (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Our destinations instead began on Thursday afternoon with the beach at Portreath, where we jumped waves like I have since my early childhood, and laughed until we were blue in the face (although admittedly the blue may have been due to the cold of the North Atlantic creeping into our veins). I must admit that this is one of my favourite things to do, so the chance to do this with Emil on a Cornish beach really made me smile. He was understandably slightly nervous of the Atlantic, used as he is to the timid calm of the Archipelago around Tjörn

English: An image of Hall for Cornwall, Truro,...

We then continued on Friday by visiting Truro, the county capital and my favourite local haunt for a bit of shopping and a lovely cream tea at the Hall For Cornwall. This was a lot of fun, as whilst I learnt that it is almost impossible to get hold of a decent pattern for any form of men’s clothing, I also learnt that Hall for Cornwall’s Cream tea is wonderful, provided you can get the wasps and the seagulls to leave you alone ( although that issue is the same everywhere, I suppose). We topped off the day with a visit to the ever-lovely Victoria Gardens near the station, which have always been one of the loveliest and best-kept secrets of Truro.

Rally steam engines

Saturday was taken up by a visit to Stithians’ showgrounds to see the Steam and Country Fair, which is an annual event where one can go and see loads of vintage cars, tractors, buses and above all, traction engines and steam locomotives. I grew up watching vintage steam rollers and traction engines going up my road as there was an enthusiast who lived near by, but I’m not sure how common it is elsewhere to see so many beautiful machines moving around and puffing steam and smoke through their pipes. Unfortunately, we got absolutely soaked on our visit, but it was a wonderful day out nonetheless. I think there had been more of the engines on the Friday than on the Saturday when we went, but still – we certainly enjoyed ourselves, even if we looked drowned by the time we left!

English: Cyclists at Mount's Bay The sea wall ...

And to top if off, yesterday we visited the ever-popular Penzance and took a stroll across the bay to look at the beautiful St Micheal’s Mount. Initially, the idea was to actually go up the mount to the castle and look at the stuff there, but unfortunately time, tide and public transport got the better of us, so we just satisfied ourselves with paddling our toes in the high-tide waters. The sea was unusually calm and looked just as beautiful as it does in the photo from Wikipedia to the right. It was a lovely last day, and I really enjoyed it – as, I believe, did the Emil. It was topped off by us receiving our contract for our flat via email late yesterday evening, which just about put the icing on the cake.

This morning began bleary-eyed and early at 6am, at which we said goodbye until September, when my final journey to Sweden begins and we shall move into our new home – exciting or what?! Emil has taken a large case containing the fundamentals of my winter wardrobe with him ( and my TARDIS teapot – can’t leave that behind!) so I guess the journey has half begun: Operation: Invading Sverige is go!

 

Ledsen för tystnaden!

It’s been quite a while since my last post: sorry about that! It’s been a little hectic recently.

Firstly, on 30th June I moved out of my old house, resulting in a three-week-long sofa-surfing stint whilst I waited to finish my job. About half of that was spent without reliable internet, so it was relatively difficult to keep people up-to-date with the comings and goings of my life. It was pretty cool staying with all of my closest friends before leaving though, and definitely meant that it felt like we’d caught up ‘good and proper’ before we all bid farewell. However, the last few weeks have been absolutely swelteringly hot, and most of the time was spent trying to stay cool somehow in the blistering heat.

Soon afterwards, the Emil left for Sweden, and has started back at work out there. Hopefully he’ll be heading back over to the UK for a visit in a couple of weeks though, which will certainly be rather on the awesome side.

Also, last week I had an implant fitted, which will hopefully mean that I don’t have to have arguments with nurses every five minutes anymore 🙂 (long story)

Leaving work was surprisingly sad. I received a present and card from one of my students which actually made me shed a few tears. I also was given a surprise by my most awkward class, which was a lot less terrifying than expected, and summed them up completely! I’m going to miss a lot of the staff members that I have made friends with though, and there are a large number of in-jokes that will make me smile for a long time yet.

At the weekend Emil started sending me ‘Words of the day’ in Swedish, and explaining how to use them. It’s quite interesting and very helpful for improving my Swedish!

Leaving my uni town was also very strange. On Saturday we had a huge get-together in the pub and roughly twenty people turned up, which was really nice and heartwarming to see, even if most of them turned up just to make sure I’m actually going.

On Monday a few of us went out to TGIs, then a cocktail bar and to my favourite club, which resulted in a huge amount of hilarity and dancing to ‘thanks for the memories’, which made me smile immensely.

And then on Tuesday I headed home in style, in First Class on the train. Other than a small altercation with an old biddy who walked behind me and then complained that i walked into her with my bag when there were staff who told me to move there, it was a lovely ride home.

So now I’m in sunny Cornwall with my parents, enjoying my summer and clearing out my cupboards of old paperwork and even older books in an attempt to whittle down my possessions into a small enough collection to take with me to Sweden.

Wish me luck!