This spot is dedicated to the world and how I see it.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

28 May 2011

It's amazing what a little bit of fresh air can do. An hour's pottering in our little garden re-sets my brain and body. And an hour passes so quickly when you are in this flow-mood.

This week (as many other weeks) I've been thinking alot about work-life balance. And I always reach the same conclusion: I was so not made for working full-time. Honestly. Do not misunderstand me, I enjoy working and being in the office and meeting my nice colleagues is very important to me.

Even if I work normal hours, 9:00-5:30, I'm home at 6-ish if I go straight back home and then the evening passes while doing the 'must-do stuff'. One day this week was a revelation: I had a meeting which ended at 3:30 and I went straight back home. And the rest of the day was so long! I felt I had so much space to live! Plenty and plenty of time to do everything: tidy up, talk with a friend, go to the gym, cook, have a cup of tea and read AND skype with a friend for 1,5 hours planning our toastmadam/toastmaster role.

At work the day after I was reflecting about how fresh I felt, not as worn out as one usually feels after a workweek. Pure luxury. Or?! That's the way life should be. I'm surprised about how we humans have accepted and normalised this kind of life. Everyone does it - but, to me, it's not normal.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Cat is back, in new shape and form. It's been a year and a half that I'm back in my native country. It has not been easy. It's been and existential trip which is not over yet. The person I was during the past 10 year when I was living abroad is still there - but noone here can see that person.

Brussels. I was living in the city where things happen which change the world. Important thoughts are thought, ideas are born and politics and even history is made. The world out there is present. And I was in the middle of this amazing environment! Part of it.

Stockholm. Very beautiful, check. Fresh air to breathe, check. Flexible working hours, check. Those things I had been missing, check. But yet, I don't identify with my life here. Yet. And I am in serious doubt if I ever will. I feel more detached from Sweden than ever before. Some days more and some days less. This country, is it mine? And Swedish, how do I feel when I speak my mother-tounge? Most of the time, I'm fine with Swedish - but often I feel trapped. Stuck in a sqare language. Well all languages are beautiful in their own way when you master them. But I still feel that my vocabulary is the way it was back in 1999. With a few new additions, luckily.

I read a fabulous book by Bobo Karlsson called "Urban Safari" in which he paints portraits of the soul of different cities around the world. About the Swedish capital he writes "Stockholmers are like insecure teenagers always changing according to the fashion of the day". It's quite an appropriate description. Stockholmers very fashionable - and most fashionable people wear the same fashion. When something has gone out of fashion, it's out - dare you coming back. This, I would say, symbolises a certain insecurity about the city's soul. Of course there are exceptions like anywhere. But this is the sixth big city I've lived in and, I tell you, I've never experienced insecurity so present before. Fashion is only one of the channels this feeling is transmitted. I so much prefer individualism when everyone does what they feel like.