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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Christmas buffet

Last week at work was not so busy. It seems to be a slow period right now. But we have a patron who is going to request all the books on local history. That's several thousand volumes. He has agreed to request 250 at a time. It's manageable. My boss also gave me the task of filling in three forms with technical information. It was a short time to get it done and I had to ask someone else for help but it worked out. I also had to go to the storage twice to shelve new dissertations.

Last Friday it was Black Friday - something we have copied from the US. I was too tired to go shopping but most of the offers were extended to Saturday. I went to the mall outside Helsingborg then and got some underwear at 25% off. The main reason for going there was something else, though. I went for the Christmas buffet at Ikea. It was very crowded but so worth it. I'm a great fan of their herring in crayfish sauce. Also the salmon and veggie gratin. There was dessert also. I ate too much, of course. Sunday there was lots of sports on TV, both skiing and equestrian events.

Monday afternoon the social club at work arranged yet another success. One of my colleagues gave a lecture on a book history-related topic. He talked about a book printer in Lund in the 16th century. We got to see (and touch) some of the actual books also. It was a very interesting lecture.

Sunday, November 20, 2016


It has been a rather ordinary week at work. I was reminded of a report I had to write and got started on it. I was supposed to have done that over a year ago, so my boss was really wondering what took so long. I had done the interviews needed for this, but still hadn't assembled the information. It's not that I'm lazy, I promise. I have been very busy with other things.

The snow melted pretty quickly and it's now a more typical winter for this part of Sweden: dark, rainy and windy. It's about 7-9 degrees.

This weekend I went to a mall outside Malmö. I looked in several clothing stores but didn't get anything. Instead I went grocery shopping. Apart from this the winter sport season has started so there are competitions to watch on TV.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Birthday party

It has been a historic week. Not here though. Early Wednesday morning we found out the result of the US election. There was little else discussed at work that day. Our coffee breaks became very long. It's hard to put our feelings into words. We are truly amazed by a lot of things, both the road leading up to the election and the result. It will be interesting to see what impact this will have on world politics.

It was an ordinary week at work, so not much to report from there. Other things I had to do this week included getting a hair cut and getting new glasses. The latter was by far the most expensive. I have reached that age now when I need special glasses to read text close up.

Wednesday the first snow of the season fell. It was early and it caused a lot of traffic problems. It has also been pretty cold. Very few people had changed their tires to winter tires. I had to drive the storage round that day and had to dig the car out first. Driving went well as they had removed most of the snow by the time I started.

Friday after work I went to the summer house. When I arrived it was 10 degrees inside. I changed the ventilation and heater right away but it took a long time to get the house warm. Later my sister and her family arrived also. Saturday we went for a walk to the beach on very icy trails in the forest. It was special as it was very cold and very sunny at the same time. The kids loved skidding on the ice. The adults not so much. In the afternoon we all went to my father's place an hour away. It was his 70th birthday. Two of his sisters with spouses were there also. It was a great party with good food (salmon and moose) and great conversation. It was very nice to see everybody. (And the glass keg which was bought last weekend was used for punch, as planned).

Today we winterized the summer house. We shut off the water, turned off the dehumidifier and changed the heater back to 10 degrees. This may all seem easy but I think we had to call my mother four times before we could get everything right. We have never done this without her being there before. We finally did all of the necessary procedures and left. I got a ride to a train station and got onboard a southbound train about mid-day. I had lunch in Lund before going back home.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Pope's visit in Lund

This Monday we expected chaos in Lund. The Pope visited the cathedral for a big event commemorating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Both Catholics and Lutherans participated. The service was not open to the public but it was broadcast live on Swedish Television.  We didn't know what kind of crowds to expect so many of my commuting colleagues (and myself) arrived at work very early that day. In the end only about 5000 people showed up outside the cathedral. I had to drive the storage round and on the way back I very nearly got stuck when the police started closing off the access roads to Lund. I just about made it through before they blocked the road.

The university library did actually contribute to some extent to the Pope's visit. A few weeks earlier they called from the security department and asked if we had some books to lend out for decorative purposes. Before the church service the Pope was going to meet the Swedish royal family in a separate house which needed to be decorated. The book shelves there were empty so we lent them about 15 boxes with relatively good-looking books from the 19th century. I hope no one looked too closely at those books because they were mainly on German Protestant theology...

Two days this week we had an intern in the stacks. We already knew her because she works hours as weekend/evening staff. She helped us retrieve books both in the stacks and at the storage. She was, like most people, impressed by the electronic compact shelves at the storage. She also though it was a little scary to operate them, as the entire block (7 meters high) moved at the same time.

Saturday my father and his girlfriend came to visit. We went to the nearest mall as they needed to get some shopping done. It turned out to be impossible to find a glass bowl that was big enough for punch. It's apparently not in fashion at the moment. They ended up getting a large keg made of glass instead. I was also able to stock up on groceries and was daring enough to get an orchid as a house plant.