A Game of Thrones, Boxes and Feminism

Don’t move house.

No, do move house. But if you’ve not moved your ‘entire house’ before I have some advice.

Take 6 large boxes. Fill them with your favourite stuff.

Once they are full, burn everything that’s left.

Burn it! You don’t need it.

I should explain. When we moved over from London we only brought two suitcases full of clothes with us. Actually, another top tip if you find yourself in a similar situation. When moving to country where jumpers are not just a fashion choice but a necessity, don’t bring two ‘hand wash only’ ones and one ‘normal wash’ one… you will end up wearing the same normal wash jumper every day… and we’ve already covered the stupidity of bringing one jacket, and a bloody mac at that (!) to Scandinavia.

Anyway yes, as you may have gathered all of our stuff arrived last week from London. Now keeping in mind we had a one bedroom attic flat in London, with a large bedroom and sitting room, but borrowers sized kitchen and bathroom, how many extra-large boxes of ‘stuff’ do you think we could have?

Well it’s not until you get people in to pack up your stuff that you realise just how much stuff (rubbish) you’ve actually got.

We came in at 73 boxes.

73 boxes.

Here are few of them in all their glory,

photo photo - Copy (3)

As a result we spent 8 hours, yes 8 hours on Sunday unpacking.

And do you know what, just organising them into the correct rooms before we could even start unpacking was itself like a, depending on your age, giant game of Minecraft/ Tetris/ Lego/ Homemade wooden blocks – delete based on which of those brought back the strongest memories from your youth.

Changing the subject slightly, does anyone over the age of 10 get Minecraft? … “So essentially it’s a game where you build houses? Err, don’t people do that for a living?” What next, Pipecraft? ‘You too can build your own integrated pipe network!’ – “What, like a plumber?”… OUT Next Year,’ Carpetcraft!… Marvel as you get to literally carpet ANYTHING!’

Jobs as games? What is the world coming to?

Talking of ‘the kids’, bit of news on the bump (I should have opened with this really, Alex is going to kill me). We had our ‘big scan’ last week and all is well. The baby (we know the sex but are keeping it under wraps for now) was asleep when we went in, but as soon as it was ‘on screen’, leapt into life – I can’t imagine where it got that kind of behaviour from…

Must admit it was quite a thing to see the little legs kicking away. Thankfully up until this week, Alex couldn’t actually feel the movement but that’s no longer the case. Cue lots of ‘ouch’, ‘wow’, ‘what was that!’… and that’s just me as Alex jumps up off the couch!

The other BIG news this week is that we have FINALLY sorted the internet in the flat. I do love Sweden and the people here are brilliant at a huge amount of things… But sometimes, honestly… Basically it’s taken us the best part of two months to get the internet sorted and it could have been worse. Apparently you have to be a resident in Sweden for 8 months before you can get it installed. Luckily we had (but of course!) special diplomatic dispensation – nobody wants to see an incident do they (I even almost had to put my suit on Stace!) So from the 31st March, we will be back on-line.

The significance of this is that I don’t know what it will mean for Coffice (the new Mugged). Am I ready to leave this place behind? Can I even leave it behind? I only had to wait 45 minutes for my tea to arrive today… AND she apologised for taking so long, I’m telling you they are really getting their act together… Slight dent in the relationship yesterday though. I asked if I could use the printer to scan in some documents and was told that it’s only ‘available for members’… That hurt. Come back Mugged, all is forgiven.

Before I forget, can I also take a quick moment to thank everybody for their feedback on the blog so far. Glad to hear people are enjoying it, well I assume the people who aren’t happy about it basically can’t be bothered leaving feedback – more fool them, I’ll never stop now!

In other news, on Sunday I nearly joined the ‘Swedish Feminist Initiative’, or ‘F!’ for short… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feminist_Initiative_%28Sweden%29

I should explain. There is a small park at the bottom of the road our flat is on. Near said park is the best cake shop in Stockholm (apparently – more on this another time). Anyhow, during a particularly dull ‘box opening’ period on Sunday, I nipped out to get some lunch.

Turning the corner I’m confronted by hundreds of people and the party leader, Gudrun Schyman, leading a rallying cry in front of about 300 people.

Gudrun Schyman, Leader of F! Our flat is on the round behind those buildings.

Gudrun Schyman, Leader of F! Our flat is on the round behind those buildings.

Obviously with my Swedish not being ‘entirely’ up to speed and no idea who Gudrun Schyman is I didn’t have clue what was going on. But the pink balloons were cool and I really like the logo, ‘F!’. Plus they were chanting something which sounded really cool in Swedish (I’m guessing something like ‘NOW! NOW! NOW!’) so naturally I grabbed a balloon, pink flyer and chanted along with whatever it was they were shouting. Good on them, apparently they are growing in popularity and let’s be honest women still get a pretty rum deal, so crack on I say. Anyway, if you are interested you can read more about the whole thing here, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feminist_Initiative_%28Sweden%29 and here, http://www.democraticaudit.com/?p=8152

It’s quite interesting politically in Sweden. From what I can gather it’s actually quite a politically charged place – historically socialist democratic, more recently conservative. Unfortunately, and not entirely dissimilar to the UK (though I feel they over publicise the issue in the UK), the far right has seen significant growth in the last few years – though it should be said that this lot make Farage and his clown show look decidedly liberal in their views. Unfortunately that trend seems to be spreading across Europe and within Sweden there seems to be, at the heart of it, a fundamental moral conflict happening.

Anyway, you don’t read this for political views, it’s to hear about stupid stuff I’ve been doing. Well some of you may know that I’m writing a book called ‘The Centre’. I say writing I had the idea about 10 years ago, a flurry of creativity about 3 years ago when I wrote the first chapter… and then nothing else since. However I’ve bitten the bullet and signed up for a creative writing workshop. Basically you have to produce 5,000 words a week and read them out loud to other English speaking writers.

Its next Tuesday near our flat and I’m thinking about going. Slightly terrifying, the people who’ve read the first chapter (you know who you are) have given me positive feedback… However, complete strangers who don’t care how you feel afterwards? It could get brutal in there! But on the other hand it’s probably what I need to actually start writing again – 5,000 words a week (mostly last minute probably), so will probably feel a bit like writing my thesis every week FOR THE NEXT 3 YEARS!

So finally, yes we are finally near the end. You may be wondering why the title of this blog has Game of Thrones in it (no it wasn’t a thinly veiled attempt to ‘go viral’). This week, Westeros (name of the place the show is set, do keep up kids) came to Stockholm! That’s right, the second best show on TV (sorry, but as Brian D will tell you, The Walking Dead is the best show on TV) had a promo exhibition of costumes, props and memorabilia from the show…


And we went (GEEKS!!!)… Well no. Actually we didn’t. Basically I got down there and this was the queue…

gt 1

Waiting time? Two hours. Yea, two hours waiting in Stockholm cold is like 5 hours in most normal temperature places so we didn’t go in. If we had though I imagine it went a bit like this…

‘You are meet at the door by key cast members from the show… who you ignore and focus all your attention on Peter Dinklage because, let’s be honest, it’s all about the Peter Dinklage. He then gives you a fully detail and illustrative tour round inner workings of the show – How come everyone’s got great teeth, isn’t this meant to be set in medieval times? What happened to the all the parts we liked in the books? Can Alfy Allen actually act or does he just not bother in this particular show? You know, all the really important stuff… At the end of the tour is G.R. Martin… who you again ignore and go for a drink with Dinklage where you hear what people are REALLY like on the show…’

At least it goes something like that. And if none of that made any sense to you, give in to your inner geek and just watch it… actually, just watch The Walking Dead first, its better and really NOT about Zombies… it’s about the human condition… and Zombies.

Till next time,

Fraser ‘geek and proud’ Hynes

Regular features:

Bump Watch: We had the ‘big scan’ last week – see above. All good.

Beard Watch: Bottom and sides have been trimmed to bring in line with the ‘crap’ haircut form last week.

Picture of the Week

8 hours? Yea, I’ve had enough now.

8 hours? Yea, I’ve had enough now.

NEW FEATURE: Track of the week

I’m spending a lot of time on my own at the minute in coffice so have devised a play list which is a basically a collection of songs to suit my mood and each week I’ll share a link here so you can judge for yourself how things are going.

To kick things off, and it feels appropriate, the next big thing (if they aren’t already) from Sweden, First Aid Kit. Stockholm had its first little rays of sunshine this week and the whole city blossomed a little bit as a result. I think this song captures that mood – the first 43 seconds sums it up perfectly and they are FROM Stockholm!

First Aid Kid – Emmylou


One thought on “A Game of Thrones, Boxes and Feminism

  1. Pingback: A big 1st Birthday surprise and legendary café sell out | Avoiding international incidents in Sweden

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