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Slippery.

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The roads were slippery on my way to work this morning and they were nasty slippery on my way home. At least it wasn’t black ice so it was easy to see that it would take some time to reach both work and my home. It’s such a scary feeling when driving and suddenly feel that the car sort of is flowing on the road and the only thing one can do is that it at least stays on the road :-) Luckily there isn’t much traffic when I drive to and from work so the car and I can mostly flow as we wish :-)

 

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Have You ever heard about the beings called Vittror? I can actually not find any English name for them so they are probably exclusive to northern Sweden and Norway. They are relatives to our Vättar (Wights) and like the wights they tend to live close to humans and in big families. They normally look like humans but perhaps not even half the size. Unlike a wight they dress in bright red clothes and look a bit more tidy to be honest. They can however take the form of an animal, like striped worms and if one by accident would walk on one of those worms the foot usually starts aching or if one is unlucky one get seriously ill.

 

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Vittror have their own livestock and besides being much smaller and extremely more beautiful than ours they also always are bright white. Their cows and goats give much more milk too than ours do.They wear tiny silver bells that  sounds very mysterious and melodic. If one should see one of their cows the important thing was to quickly throw a steel knife over it. If one so do one is allowed to keep the cow but the owner would pay a visit later that day with some demands. The cow could stay as long as one don’t milk it too much and if it would get a calf that calf would belong to Vittrorna. 

 

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Vittror always move their livestock on the same paths and if one would build a home on one of them the owner will never get any peace in that house. One can either sleep with all doors open so vittrorna can pass as they please or simply move the house to another place :-) :-) It does happen that vittror, like trolls can kidnap a child but they will usually return the child after three days, I guess even our small children just eat too much :-) Some vittror own lakes and if one toss in a silver coin before fishing one will get plenty of fish, unless it is one of their pikes, called troll pike, because they are impossible to get out of the lake.

 

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It isn’t easy to live with all these beings :-) I think that I would have moved the house, open doors in summer with all the mosquitoes we have is no nice thing to experience :-)

 

This is how the writer and artist Johan Egerkrans see vittror.

 

Have a great day!

Four days left.

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Today I could write about our racist party, well they aren’t racists but…. as they always say but I won’t. Well I can write this, they say that our native people, who lived here long before any one else aren’t Swedish. If any are wouldn’t it be them? They say a lot of other crap too and it is nice that they finally show their true color, nazi brown. I could also tell You that they want to register everyone that has at least one parent born in another country, even though if that person is a Swedish citizen. That’s nice isn’t it? I wonder how long it will take until they want people to wear different colored stars on their clothes? One isn’t a true Swede until after the third generation is born here, well unless one belongs to the native people or is jewish. As I said at work, at least I’ll be deported to the Mediterranean since my grandfather was from the former Yugoslavia :-) :-) :-) (there’s too little Russian blood in me I hope because Russia isn’t somewhere I would like to be deported to :-) )

 

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The day has passed fairly quick and I can only hope the rest of the week will too. I know those three weeks at home will :-) It’s like going to bed on Friday just to wake up three weeks later so I can go to work. I really need to win the lottery now :-) :-) :-) The cold seems to be better but my voice is going down hill, I’m so hoarse now that even I have trouble hearing what I’m saying :-) I hope some hot cocoa will help me with that, it’s worth a try anyway :-)

 

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It looks as if the repair of the fence worked fine, there was no little slightly fat spaniel running around outside the dog yard when I came home. I’m not worried that he would run away, he would be so worried if he couldn’t see the others so the furthest he would go would be to the gate of my property. It’s those not knowing or caring that there might be animals running around here I worry about, they could hit him with tha car. I have to say that the last timber lorry that was here had a fantastic driver. It was completely black outside and I had just come home from work and like always the dogs ran anywhere but to the open gate. He was just three meters (much the same in yards) away from one of my dogs when he saw him. If he hadn’t managed to stop the car he would have torn down my garage because he’d rather hit that than the dog :-)

 

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It is time for that cocoa (we say cacao in Swedish :-) ) and I need something to eat too. The ogs have already had theur dinner but that won’t stop them from begging for mine :-) By te way, did You know that the Swedish name for a kite is drake, that means dragon :-)

 

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Have a great day!

Thankfully not problems of mine.

Most of the frost had melted when it finally was bright enough to go outside this morning. There still was some on the pumkin though.

Most of the frost had melted when it finally was bright enough to go outside this morning. There still was some on the pumpkin though.

The rice porridge is slowly boiling on the stove and for once there are some sounds from the fire, I guess there’s lots of resin mixed in to the fire logs this time. I could of course go outside to the wood shed and fetch some “real” wood but I feel just too lazy right now :-) We were supposed to get some sunshine today but like always the predictions were so wrong, they don’t even get the bad weather right now days :-)

 

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I had just done the laundry, taken a shower and started to relax, even thinking of taking a nap when my neighbor came knocking on my door. The battery had given up in his car so he wanted me to bring my car so we could connect the batteries. I know they connected good because there were sparks when the last connection was connected to his car. Still the starter just clicked. Suddenly it worked for a few seconds then it died again, the starter that is. The car was totally dead all the time.

 

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A bit blurry and a bit grainy but he refused to stand still long enough and it was so dark that I had to use ISO 4000.

 

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Suddenly it worked again but it took a while before the engine started, we could smell the petrol flying out of the exhaust pipe :-) The engine must have been totally filled with petrol after all the tries he had made before coming to me. When it did start the garage was filled with fumes and it looked like it was burning in there :-) My guess is that he has a bad battery but also that the starter is starting to give up. I’m not sure I would have driven anywhere with that car unless it was to the garage where they can fix it but off he went to his parents and I hope he reached them. He could have borrowed my car if it was to work he was going.

 

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We walked over the fields to get home again. I wasn't sure Hector would manage to pass where the old road had fallen down into the creek. But it turns out he did it very well.

We walked over the fields to get home again. I wasn’t sure Hector would manage to pass where the old road had fallen down into the creek. But it turns out he did it very well.

Orvar however had huge problems. He was so scared that his legs trembled. I think it was the bright white color that scared him. Sune was the one showing him how to do it. He just jumped back over to the plastic covered concrete pipes and showed Orvar how to do it, several times.

Orvar however had huge problems. He was so scared that his legs trembled. I think it was the bright white color that scared him. Sune was the one showing him how to do it. He just jumped back over to the plastic covered concrete pipes and showed Orvar how to do it, several times. As You see there’s not much water to cross.

 

Tomorrow starts the last week before Christmas vacation :-) I can’t say I will miss work even though I do like to work there but I need those almost three weeks off after this long and dark autumn. We have no holidays what so ever after midsummer, they have placed them all during spring when it’s warm and long days anyway. By writing this I know that most people don’t get almost three weeks christmas vacation, not even here in Sweden but most people most likely need it. Isn’t it amazing that these holidays we’re about to have are the most stressful ones we have when they really should be just the opposite.

 

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This is how much sunshine we got today :-)

This is how much sunshine we got today :-)

 

I forgot to write about yesterday, Saint Lucia’s day. December 13th has always been very important here and now days we celebrate the catholic saint Lucia from Syracuse, even though this country has been mostly Lutheran protestant since the break from the catholic church. But like always the celebrations have their pagan history and never really became christian no matter how much the church tried to make it so :-) I write every year about these holidays and the pagan past they have, do You want me to do so this year too? I think I still have some beings to describe and perhaps I can dig up something new I haven’t written about before, with a bit of luck :-)

 

This is the scarf that arrived in that second package from Joyce. It is so soft that I almost don't feel it while wearing it! There were also these hand made tags/ christmastree ornaments. Each has the first letter in our names printed on them. I'll place them in the tree because they are light enough.

This is the scarf that arrived in that second package from Joyce. It is so soft that I almost don’t feel it while wearing it! There were also these hand made tags/ christmastree ornaments. Each has the first letter in our names printed on them. I’ll place them in the tree because they are light enough.

 

The porridge is ready to eat and it’s time to feed the dogs and cats too.

Have a great day!

It missed us totally.

The big black spot on this cats chin makes it look surprised :-)

The big black spot on this cats chin makes it look surprised :-)

I don’t think we had any wind to speak of last night, the storm missed us totally. The snow became rain but we were very close to it, I could see snow on the mountain and even on the farm at the base of it only 500 meters (much the same in yards) away. It was a snow chaos not far away though so we were lucky this time. Well I can’t say I love rain but it’s better than deep snow :-)

 

Snow on the mountain and doesn't it look like the barn has snow on the roof?

Snow on the mountain and doesn’t it look like the barn has snow on the roof?

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Even though it has been more or less wind free here around my cottage it still hasn’t been an especially nice day, it has been in to the bones chilly but that gives an excuse to stay indoors keeping the fire burning on the stove. I was going to vacuum the floors but swept them instead. The thought of using my huge vacuum cleaner that sounds slightly more than a jumbo jet wasn’t at all appealing :-) The second package from Joyce arrived yesterday but I forgot to take photos so I’ll do that until tomorrow instead.

 

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We took shelter in the old stable for a while when the rain was as worst.

We took shelter in the old stable for a while when the rain was as worst.

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Even if I took a nap earlier today I still have no energy to do anything really. Too bad because we’ll get a clear sky tonight and isn’t a meteor shower supposed to happen this weekend? Would have been nice to see it when we for once have a clear sky. It will be cold too tonight so I’m hoping for some frost photos tomorrow morning.

 

This is as high as the sun gets this time of year here.

This is as high as the sun gets this time of year here.

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It’s time to give the dogs something to eat and to make a big pot with coffee for me. I’ve had tea all day and need a change :-)

Have a great day!

We are all waiting for the second one.

Not taken today. I like it even if it is bad in so many ways :-)

Not taken today. I like it even if it is bad in so many ways :-)

I went to work this morning, I had only coughed so I woke up once and felt almost close to feeling less bad :-) Fridays are half days and I start with washing the paint box and it’s rather an easy job. We also have a meeting every Friday that is around half an hour long and with the breakfast break there isn’t much hard work to do :-) An easy start I thought and after half an hours work I wished I had stayed at home :-) The rest of the day was easy though and today we had a big meeting when we had alcohol free glögg, a kind of mulled wine, gingerbread and Lussekatter (saffron buns).

 

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We who work at the factory gave our yule present to the owner family and they gave us ours from them. This year we got a bottle Blueberry and Lingonberry mulled wine (not alcohol free) and a bottle of sparkling wine called Freixenet Carta Nevada (and we also got a box of chocolates :-) ). I love mulled wine but am not a wine person otherwise but I tend to like white sparkling wine so this will most likely go down too :-)I think we gave them dinner in a restaurant in the biggest city (or town is perhaps a better word) and tickets to the movies.

 

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There's so much water in the bog right now that new small creeks are being created.

There’s so much water in the bog right now that new small creeks are being created.

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When I came home I saw something odd, I thought I saw a slightly fat spaniel running around outside the garage but very quickly disappearing behind the wood shed. I jumped out the car and walked on that side to see if I could find and holes in the ground where a slightly fat spaniel might have come out from :-) The odd thing was that there was no hole and the slightly fat spaniel ran around on the other side of the fence? :-) So I walked back to the car and to my big surprise I found that the slightly fat spaniel, also called Sune ran past me to the car :-) :-) :-)

 

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So I walked back with a very happy spaniel by my feet and started looking again. It turns out that there’s a gap in the fence at the bottom of it, towards the ground. It was almost impossible to see but big enough for Sune to squeeze through. So the first thing I had to do was to tighten that fence towards the ground which showed to be impossible. So instead I now have some boards nailed to the fencepost and hooked to the fence itself. Sune isn’t a dog that continues to try something if it fails the first time, thankfully :-) If it had been Nova finding that hole I would have to rebuild the entire dog yard this weekend, she never gives up :-) :-) :-)

 

There's a rather big, very old tree stump in the forest that I like a lot. It is so old that even the tree fungus is very old and now covered with both lichens and mosses.

There’s a rather big, very old tree stump in the forest that I like a lot. It is so old that even the tree fungus is very old and now covered with both lichens and mosses.

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Tree funguses don't rot, they just get old and wood like. Here's one totally covered in moss.

Tree funguses don’t rot, they just get old and wood like. Here’s one totally covered in moss.

 

 

We are all waiting for the storm now, I’ve placed everything that I can’t tie somewhere  in the garage now and I’ll go outside to pick in more fire logs just in case it’s bad tomorrow morning so I rather stay indoors :-) But it seems the storm will go much further south than they first predicted, they have changed it from hurricane wind to strong gale here in this area. it will be a hurricane where it hits further south though. We might get lots of snow though but it seems it will be mixed with some rain but then again, they predict the temperature will drop to 0C (32F) and that usually means below that here. Could be some nice photos if the snow stays for some hours.

 

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So it feels just right to watch the movie The Day After Tomorrow this evening :-) There’s nothing like watching a disaster film while there’s a storm howling outside the windows :-)

Have a great day!

Now we’re waiting for the next one.

There it is! Only 23 days until I can open it :-) Our big day is on Christmas eve here in Sweden, when children meet the Yule Gnome in their homes and lots of them cry like crazy becauase he scares the s... out of them :-)

There it is! Only 23 days until I can open it :-) Our big day is on Christmas eve here in Sweden, when children meet the Yule Gnome in their homes and lots of them cry like crazy becauase he scares the s… out of them :-)

A storm was passing by here yesterday night, well it continued for quite some time but the worst was during the night. We were supposed to get up to 5cm (two inches) of snow and the winds were supposed to be around 22m/s (49,2 mph). The snow did arrive much later than predicted and it melted as soon as it hit the ground. The winds reached hurricane force at some places so the predictions weren’t that super :-) 

 

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So how was the winds like here You may wonder, well I heard them but the forest and my neighbors cottage took all of it so it was quite nice here in my garden, almost no wind at all :-) Another storm, much worse than this is said to pass southern Sweden starting on Friday night towards Saturday morning. At first they predicted near hurricane forces here too, very unusual this far from the ocean, but it seems they now predict it to go a bit more south so we’ll miss the worst. No matter how south or north it will pass it will have the same direction as the previous one so I will most likely only hear it here and that’s nothing I’ll complain about :-)

 

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I was planning on going to work today but after coughing away the entire night I can’t say I was way too tired and probably a dangerous driver. I did manage to sleep a couple of hours around noon and if the coughing stops I won’t have any problems falling asleep tonight :-)I started to feed the deers this week but the weather is probably to mild yet, none have turned up to eat. Perhaps no surprise since dogs are used in the hunting now and they still have plenty to eat out there. Why risk anything by going to a place with four dogs :-) Most of the old deers seems to be gone now too so the ones left really don’t know us that well.

 

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I was surprised to see the mail woman drive down our road yesterday and even more so when she stopped at my cottage. The package from Joyce has arrived :-) I’ve promised not to open it up before yule so I can’t tell You what’s inside it until then :-) I have now posted all yule cards, I hope, for this year. I do hope the ones overseas will arrive to their destinations, they have a tendency not to. I think it might have to do with the mailbox in the village where I work because it’s mostly those I post there that never reach their destination, so I’ve changed mailbox this year.

 

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It’s time for a big cup of coffee to keep me awake :-) and perhaps something to eat as well.

 

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Have a great day!

I’m using lots and lots of ginger.

She understood that I had spotted her but the ground was so filled with twigs and branches that she could move only with tiny steps.

She understood that I had spotted her but the ground was so filled with twigs and branches that she could move only with tiny steps.

We’ve had sunshine today, this I know because I’m at home trying to get rid of that cold of mine. I slept through most of it but saw it when I woke up with a nasty cramp in my left calf muscle :-) The clouds came back but every now and again the sun peeks through the few gaps there are between the clouds.

 

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The birds in the area have understood that I’ve started to fill the feeders so there are so many now that it is impossible to count them. They are all looking for the few sunflower seeds in the mixture and toss out the other seeds from the feeders to the ground, spoiled little brats :-) :-) No unusual bird around yet though, the winter is just too mild for them to leave the security they have in the forest.

 

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Nova accepts the cats but she has never really shown that she likes them, so You can understand my surprise when I saw her cleaning Bertil’s right ear one day and she continued to do so the entire day. Naturally I had to see if he had an ear infection or had put his head in something sticky. It turns out he’s been in a fight again, most likely with Teodor this time because they can at the moment not stand each other. He had a wound that poured out pus! I’ve cleaned it with hydrogen peroxide and it looks to heal very good. Nova still keeps her interest in that ear so I’ll be checking it for some time more.

 

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It seems Teodor also had a big fight with Salmiak some days ago, Salmiak was once brave enough to walk in to our garden and Teodor has never forgiven him :-) It can also be that he doesn’t like the fact that Bertil and Salmiak are good friends or a combination of both. Teodor is otherwise the cuddly cat here, almost too cuddly so this was a bit of a surprise too :-)

 

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Could this be the beginning of a new dam? I wish they could start perhaps 3 meters (much the same in yards) further up stream because the creek is flowing much deeper there with high walls on both sides. If it is here they will most likely destroy it again.

Could this be the beginning of a new dam? I wish they could start perhaps 3 meters (much the same in yards) further up-stream because the creek is flowing much deeper there with high walls on both sides. If it is here they will most likely destroy it again.

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The kettle is on the stove and I’m boiling water to make rose-hip soup. Lots of ginger in it and I have no idea if that helps against the cold but I sure do like the taste :-)

 

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Have a great day!

I didn’t notice any change in speed.

I have a macro setting on my tele photo lens. I can't say it was easy to photograph this lichen :-)

I have a macro setting on my tele photo lens. I can’t say it was easy to photograph this lichen :-)

The roads this morning were soapy slippery when they were as best :-) Strange really because it had been above 0C (32F) almost all night but it seems the last rain that fell was icy rain and it froze as soon as it hit the roads. I always hit the brakes as soon as I come out on the big road outside the village. I could hear and feel how they were working but didn’t notice much when it came to speed loss :-) I can tell You that I’m glad I always leave for work in good time because I needed that today :-)

 

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I was almost alone on the road when I started driving on the high way so I tried the brakes again and the car stopped immediately so I started driving like I always do. The problem is that I cross the border to another county so it isn’t sure the road is as good there as it is in my county. It was when I met long caravans with cars that I understood that the road was worse in the other county. They all drove very slow so I did the same. Didn’t help much because suddenly my car started to slide a little, at the same time I met a lorry that also started to slide a little :-)

 

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We missed each other with a few inches I think and at least I came to work as planned  :-) and with a few minutes left before I had to walk to the neighbor factory to paint some. I can’t say I felt super fine but I did feel a bit better than yesterday. I work with a fresh air mask while painting so the air is rather cold on winter days, the only thing they do is to remove any humidity in the air because that air is also the air that keep the pressure equipment going. So it didn’t take long before my nose started running and I started to cough. The cold air chilled down the blood in my lungs so I started to freeze but my body started to heat up instead :-)

 

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Salmiak and he's not happy to see us :-)

Salmiak and he’s not happy to see us :-)

 

I went home early :-) and now I have a fever. This might pass during the night and if so I’ll go to work tomorrow, if not I’ll stay at home. The dogs will be happy if I don’t go :-) I have the fire burning in my stove and Sune is sleeping beside the kitchen radiator. Personally I don’t think it is especially cold but if Sune sleeps close to a radiator I guess it must be :-)

 

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It is time for lots of tea and rose hip soup. I’ll have ginger in both I think, it will give it all a christmasy feeling to the taste :-)

Have a great day!

I will put up a fight :-)

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I can’t say that I’ve had a good night, every time I tried to swallow it hurt so bad that I woke up. I also needed to go to the bathroom a lot because I drank a lot of hot tea and rose-hip soup, it was the best think to make my throat feel a bit less bad. That part I could have thought of before I drank all that :-) My throat is still very sour but better than it was last night, now I have a head ache instead so I think I safely can say that the cold has found me :-) Still no fever though! Well it will come later on I think :-)

 

Not especially more bright today but every now and again I have seen a rip in the clouds and blue sky has shown for a second or two.

Not especially more bright today but every now and again I have seen a rip in the clouds and blue sky has shown for a second or two.

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A nights work from the wild hogs. We could both hear and smell them but from different directions, so I guess we had at least two flocks of them close to us.

 

 

I had hoped for some frost this morning because the night was clear and rather cold but it was warm and very windy when we woke up and now it rains. No heavy showers but enough to make me want to stay indoors, even the dogs rather stay here in the cottage. I must go outside in a while anyway to fill the bird feeders, I’ve just bought 30kg (66,14 pound) of wild bird seeds. Normally I almost only buy sunflower seeds but I’m hoping to see some Gold finches and other birds who don’t like sunflower seeds especially much.

 

It's never wrong to save some photos from the summer :-) Looks so much nicer than how it is outside now :-)

It’s never wrong to save some photos from the summer :-) Looks so much nicer than how it is outside now :-)

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The result of buying wild bird seeds, is that the right way to write it? it sounds like I could use those seeds to sow wild birds :-) :-) :-) , is that next year will have to pull up lots of hemp plants, they are so illegal to have even if they have been sowed by birds :-) I’ll also pour out some deer food later but I’m hoping the rain will calm down some so the pellet’s don’t dissolve to a porridge before the deer arrive. I was planning on checking the light chains outside too but the weather really don’t encourages me to do so :-)

 

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The laundry is hanging on the patio to dry in the wind but I think the rain might reach it, well I can always see it as an extra rinsing :-) It can stay out there for a few days before I need to bring it in to dry properly, at least as long as the wind don’t get stronger or change direction. It comes from the right angle today so most of my garden is wind free.

 

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It is time for more hot tea, some ginger and honey. I might lose the war against the cold but I will at least give it a proper fight :-)

Have a great day!

They are behaving like 4-year-old kids!

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I’m sitting here a bit annoyed, the weather is so boring but at least the rain has stopped falling. But I have also lost over 30 photos that I just downloaded to the computer and naturally I deleted the photos as soon as they had been downloaded. I have no idea how or why this happened, I did like I always do but suddenly they just aren’t there!!! I mean, how can something I’ve just downloaded just vanish without a trace? 

 

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We had almost fog here this morning, it sort of was there but in a distance, it looked like it would come closer but it was like something stopped it on its way here. At least with the fog the morning could have been interesting instead of just very dark :-) Even the hunters gave up much earlier than they use to, the rain might have helped to take that decision too of course.

 

Not the brightest of days and this is way after the sun had risen.

Not the brightest of days and this is way after the sun had risen.

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The only thing we see and hear about in the news now is politics, the minority government fell in the voting about the budget. The racists had put forth a budget of their own as had the rest of the opposition (four parties that was our previous government, they call themselves the Alliance and each party doesn’t seem to have a view of their own now days). First the racists voted for their own budget which of course fell, then they voted for the Alliance’s budget which then got more votes than the governments one :-)

 

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The government then had three options, they could either ask the Speaker of the Parliament to look for another way to form a government, they could just accept the budget that was voted for or decide that we would have a new election. The Alliance counted on the Prime minister to ask the Speaker of the Parliament to see if there was another way to form a government and had already sort of created a new one. Even if the rulers in my county accepted to rule this county after the oppositions budget :-) :-) :-) it really wasn’t an option for this government and they would sure as h… not let the Alliance take over.

 

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So to everyone’s big surprise they decided that we’ll have new elections on Mars 22. The Alliance is behaving much like the Republican party in the USA, say no to everything and refuse to even consider cooperating on anything (because they didn’t like losing the power last elections :-) ) and then blame the government for not doing anything :-) The government we have isn’t much better to be honest and the racists are like they always are. The racists have also pissed of big groups that would have gained on the budget they voted no to, so they might not gain anything from this and they know that. Especially since 40% of those voting for them did it because they like their leader, not their politics. Their leader is now on sick leave because he worked so much that he hit the wall so to speak. It is doubtful that he will be able to come back before the election.

 

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So at the moment our parliament is filled with people who behaves like jealous 4-year-old kids, everyone blaming everyone for the chaos they have created. I wonder why they get paid at all to be honest! They shouldn’t get any pay checks until they started behaving like the adults they are supposed to be and take responsibility for what they are doing no matter what party they belong to!

 

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It’s time for a cup of tea with some honey because my throat is sour and I fear the cold found me too.

Have a great day!

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