Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Winner bicycles!

In Sweden you can buy an ice cream treat that is similar to a Choco-Taco, but it is called a Winner Taco. I had been talking about it to Greg for a while, and the whole time he thought it was called a Winter Taco, which I was just pronouncing sloppily. But now every time I intend to say Winter, in my head it just sounds like Winner. Hence, the Winner bicycles.







Sunday, January 18, 2015

Winter photos in Uppsala

Last weekend we finally got some snow that didn't immediately melt. I went out and took some photos.











I also paparazzi-d the bicycles like crazy. Those will get a dedicated post of their own.

Friday, January 9, 2015

whatever is beautiful

I leave my house when it is still dark, which is not difficult in Sweden during the winter. This morning was filled with a frost that just sparkled off every bit of surface of the gravel-covered path. It was so much sparkle that it hurt my eyes and I had to look away. Too much sparkle for a dark Sweden morning.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Train Tales, vol. 2

Some of my favorite time of nearly every day is my time spent on the train. Train commuting suits my person very well. I've had the pleasure of witnessing plenty of interesting/strange/lovely/funny things, and now I'll pass some of that on to you, in the form of Train Tales.

I am sitting in my usual morning seat. Two people come into the same section, seemingly a mother and teenage son. I first took note of them when they were buying tickets from the ticket checker, since most of the people using the early trains have commuter passes. They are sitting in a row of three, the son slouched next to the window and the mother in the middle. The mother gets up to find the bathroom, which is located behind them. Upon her return, she is looking only at the seats on one side of the train. The side where her son is not sitting. So she passes him right by. Passes by me. Continues on into the next car. She is gone for sort of a long time. 

When she comes back, she is once again only looking at the wrong side of the train. Her son and I are the only ones in the car, but she doesn't see him, and continues on toward the bathroom again. She isn't gone for long, but once again passes by her son and on to the next car. I'm starting to wonder if I should  intervene, because this is starting to feel so ridiculous. I guess it is possible that she is intentionally stretching her legs with a bit of walking, and that she has known where her son was sitting the whole time? When she finally returns to our car she looks toward the opposite side of the train for the first time and spots her son. She gives him a shocked, almost playful, scowl. I am fairly convinced that the son was accused of changing seats or hiding as a trick. You sneaky sneaky son, you;)

The End!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

A lot of words about salad

Here is a theory I have. When I was doing research, my life needed a creative outlet, so I turned to cooking to fulfil that need. Now my days are spent submerged in a creative outlet, and maybe this explains why I have little desire to cook.

Until last night, I hadn't done any dancing in eighteen days, and keeping with my theory, I had really been wanted to do some cooking. Plus, I think I spent the entire holiday not eating vegetables, so that needed to be addressed.

Food in bowls had a lot of appeal to me in my search for the perfect thing to make yesterday. (As an aside, how do you google that for recipes? I just kept getting info about foods to make for the super bowl, which is pretty much the opposite of vegetables I think.) I ended up taking inspiration from this kale salad bowl, this big vegan bowl, this big salad, and this other salad to come up with a bowl full of food that required no separate cooking (one day I'll try the sweet potato thing though). Then I topped the whole thing with the dressing from this kale salad recipe, which was a wildly delicious choice. I'm kind of into reading about salad dressing these days. Tahini is a brilliant emulsifier (or is it only a stabilizer?).

I hope my future self looks back on this post one day and thanks her former self for the documentation of this thing.

Also, to future self, here is my current run-down of kale salads (or non-salads, I guess).
-the recipe I make 98% of the time I have kale on hand
-the backup recipe, which is also really good, but not as good as the above recipe (even using half the sugar that recipe calls for seems abundant, and tastes just fine)

I did also make the one with the tahini dressing from above, and that was pretty tasty, but I think that is largely due to the dressing. And I also used this recipe once when I felt like I was eating too much raw kale, which worked out well for me.

The End!

Monday, January 5, 2015

adventure to the US

Greg and I went back to the US over Christmas. It had been a year and a half since I was last there. I was wondering if things would seem really different, or if everything would just feel familiar. I think if I had driven a car, that would have felt really strange, but I didn't, so no need to even talk about it.

Here are some things I do feel the need to talk about.

On the flight over, as they were giving people beverages, I asked if they had ginger ale. The response I got was, "No, I'm sorry. But if you want… I can mix you up something." At this point my curiosity is peaked. Am I about to get a treasure chest?! He immediately continues, "Sometimes people like to mix Sprite and Coke, and the Coke sort of makes it taste like ginger ale." Is this guy being serious, because that sounds disgusting. So I decline, and opt for Sprite without any mix-ins, which actually turned out to be 7-Up. And now, fifteen days later, I'm still kicking my non-adventurous self for not just going for it. How could I have passed on an opportunity like that?

Here is another thing. How did I never notice how many people in NH have vanity license plates? They are hugely abundant. And watch out for the one that had 'poodl' in it, because they cut us off twice in one day.

I also had not had so many conversations with strangers in a long time. Previously, I would compare New Englanders to Mid-westerners and consider the New Englanders to be quite reserved. They are the kind of people who are friendly only after you know them. Although… no. That is totally wrong. Chatty chatty people.

Then on the flight back my luggage got lost. One of my biggest regrets was that all of the chocolate I purchased had gone in my checked bag and none in my carry-on. So I went home without my suitcase, with hopes that they would call me within 24 hours to say all was well. And they did! I was really happy about that, and also really happy that I know the Swedish word 'baggage,' while spelled the same, is actually pronounced sort of like the b'gosh of Oshkosh b'gosh.