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Entries from February 2024

Tuesday, February 27. 2024

A Couple Of IKEA Visits

I've done a couple of IKEA visits in the last week. On the first I ate by myself and missed everybody in Sweden. It is not easy emotionally to feel torn between two places. Should I live here and then what? Or should I move back to Sweden but how will that go?
I always have the plant or veggie balls and those come with mashed potatoes, brown sauce and lingonberries.
Apple cake. And coffee. If you have an IKEA card (of course I have an IKEA card) you get the coffee for free.
I came across this at IKEA and it made me happy and sad. I often feel happy and sad at the same time......Portland based Daren Todd is collaborating with IKEA and designing small spaces for unhoused people. I don't want anybody to be unhoused, unless by choice. A lot of people are only one rent payment or one unforseen expense away from risking becoming unhoused. Rents all over the country are going up, unaffordable for many. And I speak about the US now.
A few years ago I had nowhere to live. I thought I did, I thought everything was just normal until it wasn't. My life turned upside down in the span of a phonecall. But for a short time I had nowhere to live due to another person's shitty actions.
Lucky for me I have friends, savings and good credit. But many don't. Again, I do not want anybody to be houseless, unless of course by choice.
I believe we all have the right to basic human needs - food, water (clean water preferably), shelter (a safe place to call home) and clothing. Beisdes that we all have the right to rest and sleep.

The living space you see is 96 square feet. (There is a bathroom as well but not visible in the picture).
Thank You Daren and IKEA!

I saw this sign in an antique store a couple of days ago. Bäst av allt är ett eget bo. That is Swedish and means best of all is a home of your own. I agree. Preferably your OWN home, no landlord raising the rent or being difficult. I love spending time at home. Coming home, closing the door to the loud outside, take off my shoes, change into something comfortable, make a cup of tea and get cozy on the couch and then get comfortable in bed. That moment when you burrow down in bed, I love that feeling. If you are lucky you have a pet or a few pets that share the bed and your living space with you.

IKEA knows what's up with those amanitas. Mushrooms hold the answers.

Then I went back to IKEA yesterday with Ann and Molly, it was their first time. They thought thumbs down for the meatballs and potatoes. Like gross to them. OK, like we say in Sweden "smaken är som baken." I mean, it is not a gourmet meal, it is cafeteria style fast food. But beside the food they liked IKEA. What is there not to like? I love IKEA. I should work there. 

I did my volunteer Pet Pack shift yesterday as well. Somebody told me that the shopping carts used to hold and transport people's belongings are called Burnside Cadillacs. Burnside Street is one of the streets in Portland. It was a rather chaotic scene down there yesterday. We gave away all but one of the four pound kibble bags that we prepare for dogs.
I am going down there again on Sunday. The dogs and cats need food and whatever else we have available to give away.

Saturday, February 24. 2024

Another Visit

What a nice day today and yesterday too.
I decided to pay the Iredale shipwreck another visit.

Yesterday's view.

And some sights around town.

 And an empty box of Q-tips. Which somehow coincides with a change in my life or something happening that pertains to me. And yes indeed, I am in the middle of a change. A rather major change. Lots has been happening in the last couple of months.......I was hoping for personal peace in 2024, still hoping for that. I need it badly. Got an extra large Q-tip box to replace the empty one with, do not want any unexpected and unwelcome things to happen for a good while.

Wednesday, February 14. 2024

Poor Flowers

Hello from a cold, windy and rainy Portland. Oh and it is Valentine's Day and another mass shooting took place here in the US and caused grief and trauma......and death. It is going to be a "fun" year moving forward here, it is election year in USA and I am worried that people are going to get completely unhinged, more than they already are. My vote goes to Bernie (Sanders), yes I know he is not running (too bad) but my vote still goes to Bernie. Plus I can't vote here anyways. But I align with affordable health care for all plus other Bernie visions that seem to anger and scare many Americans. 
I talked to my friend Ann the other day and she says she just doesn't care about politics because she feels like it won't matter who she votes for anyways, nothing will change and the world is not safe. I wish I could tell her differently.
I am holding on to hope, I guess. For now. Maybe one day I won't care either.
So Happy Valentine's Day, I guess to you. I saw this art heart at Kulturhuset in Stockholm.

Does anybody feel genuinly bad for all the flowers that go to waste? Like is it really necessary to have all these bouquets? Just buy a fucking plant and water it and watch it grow. I tell everybody, do NOT buy me flowers. Poor flowers. So pretty, just to end up in the trash. Humans suck.

Valentine's Day can be spent in so many more ways than together with that significant other. Like spent with yourself, nothing like luxurious time by yourself. Or in the amazing company of friends and pets. Nothing better than friends and pets in my opinion. Or with your skateboard.

I have no plans this evening. I am doing what I like doing - which is NOTHING or as little as possible. I do not want to be around strangers, don't want to be around noise - I like peace and quiet. I am around loud noise and strangers filling my ears with words and sounds and exhausting my brain when I work. People ask me all the time what kind of music I like to listen to and where I go out. The answer is, I rarely listen to music at home because I am around music so much at work and I do not go out, I go to work. Being at work is like going out. Except I go out in my underwear......A mix of strangers, music, alcohol, chatter and at the end of my night "going out" I count my money. Thank You.
Me being out.

Saturday, February 10. 2024


There is a shipwreck on the beach here on the Oregon coast. I have been out to it once before but I heard that more of the shipwreck is exposed now so I thought I would take a look at it again. But there was high tide today when I was there.
Maybe another time. This is the Peter Iredale shipwreck and it has been stuck in the sand for over 100 years.

 It is so nice outside today. It feels like spring. I feel restless inside.


Monday, February 5. 2024

Back In Portland

Well......I am back in Portland since a few days now. Longest trip back ever. Getting to Arlanda (the airport a bit outside Stockholm) and dragging my luggage around, waiting for about six hours at Arlanda for the first flight, going through security, trekking from one gate to another and hoisting my super heavy carry on into the overhead bin a total of three times and getting it down as well was pretty miserable. Sat next to a three year old child that had a very loud meltdown because he was unhappy over his experience flying I guess.
He screamed like he was getting branded with a cattle rod for like 20 minutes. Missed my connecting flight to Portland so I got home three hours later than I was supposed to. Got some rest and relief on two of the flights out of three. But I guess what matters in the end is that I got back safely and my luggage too.

The following day after returning I had an appointment with a dermatologist for a full body check. Needed to have all my moles checked. Three spots got frozen off with liquid nitrogen right then and there. I want a liquid nitrogen tank so I can freeze off every mole on my body. And I got two moles biopsied and most likely I have basal cell carcinoma (again) and need that removed. I had a mole surgically removed in 2016 for that reason. Waiting for lab results. I so regret frying myself in tanning beds and laying out in the sun for too long.
Listen to me.....do not use tanning beds and do not burn in the sun.

I missed one shift at work because I could not get the biopsied areas wet for 24 hours. Worked one shift, I was super cold the whole time and fell asleep in front of the heater in the dressing room due to jet lag and had one of my worst shifts ever money wise. Not even worth being there, should had stayed at home but you never know I guess.
Let's end this depressing entry on a different note. I guess spring has sprung, at least here. For now. That can change depending on the weather.