Welcome to Tessa's blog

Sunday, December 10, 2017


This past week was the last at work for me this year. I will however attend a few upcoming meetings anyway. This Wednesday I was at the storage all day. One of the faculty libraries brought about 80 boxes with books to us. They have weeded their collection of journals and given us a large part of it. They shelved most of it, thankfully. I took care of those books that had a hard-to-find shelf location. It was rather exhausting work, especially since I used the waiting time before the transport truck came to shelve some of our own books.

That same afternoon I attended a lecture at the Archive Center (which is the same place as our storage). The lecturer had done a DNA test on her maternal line and had discovered that someone in her ancestry had a sister who had left Sweden in the 1600s and settled in northeastern part of America. Sweden had a colony on both sides of the Delaware River 1638-1655. There are not enough written sources so she couldn't find the names of these people. It was still an interesting lecture showing how much you can really find out through a DNA test.

This Saturday I went with a colleague to a Christmas market in Lund and also to a few other stores. I did some shopping for the holidays and we had a nice lunch. Sadly, this colleague has also been on sick leave a large part of this year so we had some common issues to discuss.

The weather is not really the Christmas holiday kind. It's raining a lot, with high winds.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Archive center visits

The past week was all about research. I had vacation and visited the Archive Center three days. On one occasion I requested old tax records and incredibly enough the staff retrieved the wrong volumes. When I discovered this it was lunch time. This fact didn't stop the receptionist from getting hold of the guy who had made the mistake - he came running from the lunch room. Literally. He apologized several times and went out to the storage to get the correct volumes. I thought the entire event was rather funny but I tried to hide it. Since I have the same kind of job I know how easy it is to make such a mistake.

Tuesday I went too work to attend a meeting only to discover it was cancelled. Instead I did some research. The weekend was also spent at work. There are always more clues to find.

Sunday evening I attended a Christmas concert at the local church. It happened to be the Police Force Choir and Band. It was a very nice performance with many of the traditional carols of the season.

Today it was back to work. I went out to lunch with a colleague who is going to retire. He will be difficult to replace. This afternoon we had coffee and cookies for the social club board members. We had some cash left and decided to spend it on ourselves. We have now cleared out everything relating to the social club.

Sunday, November 26, 2017


I have 20 days of vacation to use before the end of the year so I'm not at work that much. Last week I was away two days. Monday I went to Ikea in Helsingborg to taste their Christmas buffet. The selection of pickled herring was great, especially the one in crayfish sauce. The veggie gratin was also very nice. Naturally, I also made some purchases while there but only some candles and minor items. This Friday it was Black Friday, which is something we have copied from the US. The stores had huge discounts on many things. I did go to a mall after work and came home with a top, an alarm clock and some house plants. All very affordable. Previously I also bought a new fake Christmas tree since the other one was old and not in good shape anymore.

At work I have engaged in shelving. Since I haven't done that in many months, it was exhausting. Apart from this I was asked to pose for photographs for our website and information material. I'm not sure they will use images of me for anything, though. Some of my colleagues had to pretend they were in a meeting for these photographs.

Most weekends have been about research. Nothing really exciting worth mentioning, just some more clues about the emigrants from Hjärsås and Knislinge parishes.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Last event for the social club

Last weekend one of the large genealogy database providers had a free access period. I made use of this. I spent both days at work searching for more clues using the databases with scanned material I normally don't have access to. I found some information about my great great grandfather who was a sailor. It was difficult to track him in the records but I got the names of at least some ships he sailed on. There was also an obscure file with various death records handed in to the regional court during the 19th century. To my great surprise there were death records for about 20 years for Hjärsås and Knislinge parishes for a time when the church records do not exist (almost everything before 1860 was destroyed by fire). It was a great find.

This week at work was rather busy. There are the usual meetings to attend, of course, but also other things to do. Yesterday we had the very last social club arrangement. It was basically a wake. After 44 years the library management decided to cancel the budget for all the activities. We were nine people on the board who arranged excursions, bowling evenings, lectures and parties with various themes. It was appreciated by the employees and we are all upset about this incomprehensible decision. Without any money we can't continue, that's the harsh reality. For the last event we had produced a booklet about the history of the social club. There were photos and descriptions of the activities during all the years. It turned out to be 63 pages. I wrote a large part of the text and also a page with my memories of some of the activities. I was the chairwoman for the last seven years. At the wake I was given flowers and some chocolate for my long commitment.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Back to work

Tuesday last week, which was the last day of freedom, I went on a relatively short shopping trip to Copenhagen. There were train problems so I arrived over an hour later than planned. I made only a few purchases, two tops and some socks, but it was a nice visit.

I started working again last Wednesday. There were no great surprises. I had an enormous amount of emails to go through. I have spent some time talking to my colleagues about the future work and all the projects we need to do. There were also five cases of missing books to search for (so far I have found three). The first workday the department head invited us for coffee & cookies, which was very nice. It took quite a while before I understood that it was in my honor. They wanted to wish me welcome back. It seems like they have really missed me...

I only worked two days last week because Friday I had an appointment at the hospital in Malmö. The port-a-cath was removed. It was a minor operation and I was awake. The nurses put on some rock music, which was very enjoyable. The staff members were amazing, actually. They made sure I was comfortable and that I knew what to do if the wound would bleed a lot. Afterwards they gave me cheese sandwiches and apple juice. Not really what you expect in our health care system, where budget cuts are frequent. I'm very glad the port-a-cath is out because it was annoying to have.

This weekend I didn't do anything because of the wound. Did get some groceries but that was all. This week at work is about the same as last week, I try to get everything organized and try to catch up with all the news. I went to the storage to search for a missing book (found it) and realized that we definitely need to do some shelving there. The piles of returned books were large.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

More research

The radiation treatment ended last week. The last day the nurse said it was nice to see me but he hoped I would never have to come back ever again. There are still minor issues like irritated skin but it's not much to bother about.

I have used some of my free time to do more research. There are both some requests and some long-term projects regarding emigrants. They have databases at the regional archive that I don't have access to normally, so I have spent a few days there doing research. I have also made trips to other towns. One day I went by train to Tomelilla, which is a small place in the very south of Skåne. I go once in a while because there are two stores of interest there; one large discount store and a shop with plus size clothes. This time I made purchases in both. I was very happy to find a pair of boots at the discount store. I have also attended a nice choir event in the Lund Cathedral.

My private computer is not working and it's very frustrating. I handed it over to the technician at work and even he has a lot of trouble with it. The system files are taking up too much space and we can't figure out what's wrong. So incredibly annoying. For this reason I have had to spend a lot of time at work to use the computer there instead.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Book reading

The radiation treatments are going like planned. I have two more to do. It gives you pain and irritated skin but there are lotions to ease it. I'm lucky the clinic has a drop-in arrangement because the trains are unreliable. But sometimes there is a rather long waiting time, up to two hours. I am bringing crosswords with me to keep busy.

I have visited at work a few times for meetings and also to participate in the Friday morning fika. Some days I have done excursions to other towns, to have lunch and to explore the area. Over the past few months I have visited book stores, libraries and quite a few second hand stores in the western part of Skåne. The weather has been acceptable. Now the leaves are turning into fall colors and it's very pretty, It does rain a lot but we are used to it. I changed the (remains of the) summer flowers on the balcony to heather instead and it looks nice.

I have read a book of fiction. This is not common. Normally I read fact books. But this one was entitled Swede Hollow. It was an area in St Paul, Minnesota populated by Swedish immigrants. The author, Ola Larsmo, had done a lot of research for this book. He wrote a fictional account of some of those poor people who ended up in this slum in the 1890s. It was worth reading, despite the fact that it's not really a happy story. It has not been translated into English yet.