Archive

Thoughts

I’m currently in Riga working on a two-week consulting project in course on creating international firms.

Here’s what I’ve observed so far:

– There are surprisingly many dads with prams walking around.

– Dogs, however, are scarce.

– Food (everything) is incredibly for a Swede and we’ve been eating out almost every night.

– The scars of the Soviet occupation seem to have faded very little in the 20+ years since the independence.

– People in service jobs tend to be extremely service-minded.

– Most companies have absolutely no idea what they’re doing.

– The Ukraine situation worries the Lats.

– Buildings are a mix of incredibly worn houses and remarkable historical buildings.

– We are a curiosity at our office and people constantly poke their heads in to say hi.

– Skirts are much longer here than in Sweden and my Swedish-length ones have been slightly conspicuous.

– Programmers are and look the same in any country.

Deadline and final presentation is on Friday, so back to work.

 

 

I just found out a friend of mine from high school is pregnant.

She’s having a baby.

[pause for stunned silence] 

This is someone I’m not in contact with that much any more, but there is still something special about someone you spent so much time with (and who is your age) having a baby. This is the first of my friends to take that step and it feels so strange (and if it feels strange for me, I can’t imagine how it must feel for her!)

I won’t lie and say it doesn’t feel a bit melancholy for me. I’m a firm believer in “women don’t need a partner to have a complete life” but I do want children, quite badly.
A dear friend of mine and I always joke about the fact that we can’t spend any time working in cafés because we just look at the babies instead.

At the same time, I’m a logical person. I realize I won’t have children for at least five or ten years, least of all because I don’t have a partner to have these children with.

And what would I do with a child now, anyway? I’m still in school, I don’t have a job…

As things are now, my friend’s life is very far from my own.
And damn it all to hell, if that doesn’t make me a bit jealous.

I go back to school in 16 days (if I pass my accounting exam, knock on wood.)

Or rather, I start school in 16 days. I’m done with my bachelor’s degree and am starting my master’s. I do intend to write a longer post later, to sum up my first four years at SSE, but I do need to study some more before that.

It feels strange to start though (and to go back.) It’s been a very tough couple of years and sometimes I wonder what I’ve learned, really. Did I accomplish everything I though I would when I started college?
(Nope.)

At the same time, it’s exciting. The thought of new challenges. Travels. New people. It’s also a comfort to know not everything will be new, there are people I know, I know the buildings, where to eat lunch, all those things that take up energy if you don’t know them.

The program I will attend is a completely new one. We don’t know how it’s going to be. While SSE is lovely in many ways, administration isn’t always great and we’ve yet to see if they’ve managed to do well for once. I hope so, because we’re so excited to start.

I had a talk with my friend Sara today, a fellow student at SSE, and we talked a bit about being teenagers.

I’m sure all of you remember it. And i’m sure most of you aren’t eager to repeat the experience.

I don’t remember life as being terribly hard when I was 12-18, but I know there were so many things that upset me, so many hours spent discussing trivial things that don’t matter know. Even when I was slightly older and living in the US, almost all of our time was spent with drama. Who’s friends with who, I’ve got a crush on him, he doesn’t like me…

And I can objectively say, my life is much harder today. I work much more, I have so much more complicated things to think about… My future, my family, my friends… And yet, life is so much easier now, at 23 than it was at 17.

Things like going on holiday somewhere new was daunting at 17. At 23, I’m nervous but I know I can handle pretty much anything that may happen. I’m so much better equipped to handle whatever life throws at me.

No matter that SSE is so much harder than high school, that it matters much more and that it’s so intense compared to everything else. I can handle it all in a different way. Even though an outsider would say there’s so much more against me today, it doesn’t feel that way.

I guess that’sn why they tell you life gets better when you grow up. And why I, no matter how much “easier” being 17 was, never want to have to do it again.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year!

Lucia is over, finals are over and Christmas is over. The past few days have been spent in a horizontal position on the couch, together with my good friend Ipad and my even better friend Netflix. And with family and friends, just as Christmas is supposed to be.
I just wanted to post about a thing that happened to me after our second Lucia-concert. It’d gone really, really well, and everyone was exuberant because of large amounts of sugar and adrenaline. Several people came up to me and told me how beautiful it had been, what a great concert, and so on.

Nothing odd about that, it had been a lovely concert. Easy compliments to accept.
But then two women, ca 25, 30ish came up to me and said:
“You’ve got a beautiful voice.”

And my first reactions was that they must’ve mistaken me for someone else.

Perhaps getting better at accepting compliments should be my New Year’s resolution this year?

Much love to all of you.

 

This blog has existed for around five days or so now.
It’s been fun to write again, since it’s something I don’t get to do a lot anymore, other than in an academic context.

However, if you allow me to be a bit philosophical: why blog?

It is obviously not only because I like to write, or because I want to document my life; in that case, I could simply have kept a diary.
It’s not really a career thing either, if I’d wanted to write professionally, I’d probably not have started with an obscure blog.
Is it about attention, then? Not purely, I don’t think, because if I just wanted attention, I’d post naked pictures of myself someplace.

Recognition? I want someone to recognize that I write, and what I write. Not only out of vainty, I don’t think, but because I think (very modestly…) that maybe I can make someone think, just a little.

And I like the feeling that the words are out there, for anyone to read. Just as it can be a relief to put pen to paper and get thoughts out of your head, knowing that someone can read them and observe them is gratifying.

When you’ve known someone for a long time, after a while we know most of the stories they tell. And in this, I actually mean that in a non-poetic, literal way: the stories tell they at dinner parties, or when mingling or simply when getting to know someone closer.

We all have them, a certain few stories that work well in different contexts.

I usually tell people about the inefficiency in Germany, about when I lived in the US, when we almost got lost in the Turkish countryside…

Some people tell the same stories a lot of times. My dad is one of them, and my mom usually rolls her eyes when he tells a story she’s heard 43 times already. i’m pretty sure I’m gonna be the same when I’m older. If I’m not already.
(Today’s my birthday. I’m 23 years old.)

My friend L and I had a conversation about our futures today. We both graduate this spring, and there’s the big question of what we’re going to do with our lives.

I’ll be honest: I have no idea. Literally. I could end up anywhere. (hopefully not at a tobacco company.)

And I found myself wishing, as I have done many times in my childhood, that I could just have a talent. You know, like music. Or dancing. Or writing. Or soccer. Just something that I was especially good at and that could be my big interest in life.

I always hated the question “what are your interests?” because really… I like loads of things, but…

I just don’t have that one shining passion. And the woe this has caused me!

I like loads of things. I like knowing stuff. I like learning. I like quiz shows just because they allow me to demonstrate my knowledge on a wide array of topics.

Even now, I study business and economics, not because it’s my one great area of interest, but…Well, because SSE is a good school and you can do lots of things with a degree from there.

Some of my more random areas of interest:
– Ballet
– Grammar
– Medication interactions and sideeffects
– Medical experiments during WWII
– Romance novels
– Ask Prudence and other question-answer coloumns
– Young adult literature
And these are just the “weird” ones, I have so many others.

Nowadays, I try to think of it as a blessing and just accept that I wanna learn pretty much everything. I just hope it’ll be to some good, someday, other than for quiz shows and Trivial Pursuit.

First of all, thanks to everybody who’ve read, retweeted or followed, and especially to the wonderful people (mostly my lovely friends) who’ve given me compliments for this blog, in person or on Facebook. It means so much to me and I hope you know it.

It’s my birthday next week, and I had some friends over for an early birthday tea today. I made apple cardamom and cinnamon cake and we talked and talked and laughed and I think most people enjoyed themselves.

Something I’ve always been fond of, and I get that from my parents, is to mix different groups of friends. Today, I had some people from high school here, some people from my new class at college and some people from my old college class. And while it may get awkward and grouped sometimes, it’s always fun (for me, I like to play God ;)) to see people bond with new people. My parents have always had parties like that, where different people get together, and it’s always been really appreciated.

Meeting across generations is also amazing. A few weeks ago, I was at a dinner with some friends, a dad and his collegegues and several other people, some my age, some in their 60s, all with different backgrounds and professions, and we had SUCH interesting conversations. I learned about Egyptology (apparently there’s a great school in Copenhagen for that), weight-lifting (how to breath and use the muscles between the ribs) and the origins of the Swedish word “rotvälska”. I loved to hear their stories, and maybe I’m vain, but I think they enjoyed it too

It really should be easier to meet across generations and groups.