Saturday, 20 September 2014

Church Weekend

After a week in Uppsala, I flew back up north to mamma and pappa, and almost as soon as my feet hit the tarmac, I was shuffled off to a highly enjoyable church weekend.

Prayer before evening coffee and cake

Hilda tries to put a stone in her elder brother's ear. Sharing is caring.

Taking a break after being hit in the head with a football. 

Mamma had rolled them up. Now he's rolling them down. 

The two stages of Pokemon evolution

To guide my feet, a ring of light

that cuts best through a foggy night

Pink Hair

One of the best things about my trip to Uppsala was seeing my sister again. She took the ferry in from Åland to hang out for a day or two. It was a tight squeeze to fit all four of us into my brother's two room apartment.

Note the matching cups.

"Your father knows."

And we met Jacob.
We made him play the ukelele and sing for us when we took a road trip out to my brother's new house. The radio was broken.


As Joel and I were making our way back along the harbour, we were joined students from Hogwarts who had eschewed their broomsticks for transportation a little less conspicuous.

If you've been to Stockholm before, these next few pictures may all be old hat to you. Bear with me. In the meanwhile you can amuse yourself by spotting my brother, who will be making several cameos in the city landscape.

Years ago, my friend Natalie visited from England and we went to a cafe in this square. It is directly to the right of Joel. There is a staircase that will take you down into the murky depths, where you will find old tables and lit candles.

I don't know about you but I think that crow looks very smug. In the best possible way.

Hey, I just realized I made it into the picture.

The church at evening light

I'm swingin' in the rain, I'm swingin' in the rain. Oh, what a glorious feeling...

No roof? No problem.


Joel and I spent a day in Stockholm. We walked down to the harbour, over the bridge into Djurgården to Rosendals Kafe, where we stopped to enjoy lunch. These are some pictures I took along the way.

This young man decided to have a rest on the green lawns below the church.

The Matilda

This is Rosendals Kafe. It is set in the midst of the gardens, next to the tiniest castle you will ever see, and it serves you food in one of the old greenhouses.

I had a pickled courgette and cheese sandwich on raisin bread. 

The rain started up and we couldn't leave. Joel rang his wife to tell her about his day.

No one, of course, enjoyed the rain more than the ducks. It turned the usual trickle of slow drains into waterfalls.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

From the Car

In 2012, I visited Nepal and India. My team and I spent a lot of our time on bumpy roads and long train rides, and I took a great many pictures. I was the photographer. I collected the ones I took whilst sitting in a moving vehicle, and you can see them here. I did something similar recently, but in Sweden. And with less people.

Steninge Slott

Uppland is beautiful. I have heard people find it too flat. Flat is uninteresting, boring, without feature to stir the imagination. But I quite enjoy the view. It breaks with the dense evergreen forests in the north where everything feels just a little bit wilder, a little more remote. Uppland feels cultivated, historic, tamed by hundreds of years of farming and battles and events of significance.

Picnics in the park are not allowed.

Lotta and I took a detour on our way back from Sigtuna and we stopped to explore the castle grounds. Steninge Slott is a very small castle, perfect for a recluse author. The plan is to make a lot of money and then build my own stately manor one day. Lotta is encouraging of my plan, but only as long as I give her a wing to live in. I shall shut the doors and lurk about my castle and terrorize the villagers. 

We stayed so long the gates were shut and locked by the time we finished our tour. 
But not to worry. We just climbed the railing. 

Monday, 15 September 2014

Lots of Ducks

Lotta, my brother's mother-in-law, took me out on a day-trip during my week in Uppsala. We visited Sigtuna.

The mother duck sits in the middle and her four young fledglings preen beside her.

We went to Tant Bruns Kafe, which always makes me happy because it is based on Tant Brun, or the Aunt Brown from the storybook Tant Brun, Tant Grön, och Tant Gredelin (Aunt Brown, Aunt Green, and Aunt Lavender). The story was published in 1918 and written and illustrated by Elsa Beskow, about whom I wrote in an earlier entry here. Sigtuna supposedly looks quite a bit like the places in the book though it is not the source of inspiration.

The carrot cake disappointed. I would recommend the blueberry pie.

And sparrows joined us.