Spring showers and seconds saved

This morning finds me with a cup of tea and the fourth Witcher book wide open, the window cracked and the sun streaming in. Last night I handed in the last assignment I’ll ever do at uni, my BA thesis has been safely handed in too, and there is nothing else left to do with five years of university. This might be as close to a perfect morning as I can imagine. A perfect spring day.

No one anticipated how this year was going to go, and not in our wildest imaginations would any of us guess that this would be how we’d spend our spring: quarantines and travel bans and social distancing. Working on exams and hand-ins and the thesis has been a godsend in keeping my routine quite close to normal, and for that I’m grateful.

This situation has brought a strange end to my time in Kristiansand, though, and I’m trying to come to terms with it. This city, which has been synonymous with lovely people, social gatherings, study groups and wine nights with people who’ve become my closest friends, now seems rather cold and lonely. Luckily I’ve made friends with the next-next-door neighbor, and we wave and chat across our balconies, both in our own little spheres. Cross-balcony tea parties have become our specialty, and they’re definitely something that’s gonna stand out as the marker of 2020. So, what did you do in April ’20? I finally got into rooibos tea, and drank copious amounts of it while chatting to my new German friend who got virus-stuck in Norway, while both chillin’ out in our respective flats. 

I wonder how many times people have said “I’ll never take a hug for granted again”, from their little self-isolated bubbles, but I’ll join the choir. I hope we don’t forget this time too easily when “normality” comes knocking on our doors; I hope I never take socialising for granted again. Not that every single night out needs to be filled with mindfullness and extreme gratitude, but maybe there’ll be time for a little thought sent to just how lucky I am to have kind people around me. Maybe I’ll just have an extra little think when I’m sat next to someone I care about, with their arm around me as the waves crash against a shore we’ve dragged the boat up on. Maybe I’ll be a bit more grateful for the loud music escaping speakers on a massive stage, and enjoy the feeling of a really good summer concert outside, on one of those nights where the mosquitos forget to bite and the breeze is warm and calm and the sun never really sets. Maybe that will be the time to send a small thought to when we weren’t allowed to gather more than five people in total, to when hugs were out of the question and bright spring nights were intended spent indoors. 

However, this time has made me reconnect properly with friends who have moved away, friends in other corners of the world and different countries, and I really appreciate that. Having to suddenly do all socialising online really bridges the gap of “moved to a different country”.

I’m still filming a second a day, and those seconds are strange to watch back when times are so quickly a-changing. I’ve decided to split 2020 into 3 videos, “January to April”, “May to August” and “September to December”. I did intend to post this earlier than now in mid-May, but oh well..
This year has already proven that it can take us for a ride, that it can twist and turn and properly surprise us, and I’m both anxious and excited to see what else this year has in store for all of us.

I hope you’re having a wonderful day!

-Andrea

One month down, Eleven more to go

It’s February 1st today, and January felt like it lasted a year.

I started this month at home, with Harvey visiting from England. From then and until now, I’ve moved flats and gotten settled, started up a new semester of my BA, found out that I really really enjoy my degree, received marks and got As on all my exams (!!) and with some lovely people, I’ve done a lot of work, both at uni and outside of uni.

Last year I filmed a second everyday, from January throughout July. A lot of stuff happened during those months, and I love to look back on those clips now – to see how much can change in a short amount of time. Watching the days slip by as seconds also really do put things into perspective.

This year, I’m gonna try again, and this time I’ll see if I can do a whole year, now that I’ve proven to myself that I can do six months.

So, without further ado, here’s my January! It may not look all that eventful to you when you watch it, but it’s been a good one.

Hope this first month of 2019 has been kind to you!

Have a wonderful day,

-Andrea

WWW Wednesday, 23/01-19, First reads of 2019

The first WWW of 2019!
I’ve been a bit slow on the reading front lately, but I’ve really liked the books I’ve worked my way through. Life’s a bit busy these days, with uni and organizations and board meetings and work and study groups, but it’s all interesting, so it’s not too bad.
But let’s jump straight into the book post!

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words, and anyone can join the fun! All you have to do is answer three simple questions (“The three Ws”):

-What are you currently reading?
-What did you just finish reading?
-What are you planning on reading next?

I am currently reading:
The Storm Crows by Kalyn Josephson

I’m in love with the idea of elemental crows and magic basically being the lifeblood of a city, and the world building in this book is solid and so interesting! At the moment the plot feels a little bit heavy and a couple of the characters are quite one-dimensional still, but I’m pretty sure that’s just because I haven’t gotten far enough into the story yet. I’m excited to see where the story and the characters are going, and I’ve got my fingers crossed, cause I really want this book to be good.
This is an advanced reader’s copy, so it’s not out in stores until July, but I’ve got a feeling it’ll definitely be worth a read when it’s released. I’ll keep you posted when I finish it!

Blurb:
Eragon meets And I Darken in this thrilling new fantasy debut that follows a fallen princess as she ignites a rebellion to bring back the magical elemental crows that were taken from her people.
In the tropical kingdom of Rhodaire, elemental crows are part of every aspect of life…
Until the Illucian empire invades, destroying everything.
That terrible night has thrown Princess Anthia into a deep depression. Her sister, Caliza, is busy running the kingdom after their mother’s death, but all Thia can do is think of everything she has lost.

I just finished reading:
Leksikon om Lys og Mørke by Simon Stranger


This book got up close and personal and I had to put it down multiple times. It showed scenes from the war that I’ve not really heard about before, and I don’t know what to say about this book, at all, so I’ll just leave you with the blurb. The rights have been sold internationally, though, so there will be an English translation out soon. If you can stomach it(which I nearly couldn’t), you should definitely read it.

Blurb:
According to Jewish tradition, everyone dies twice. The first time is when the heart stops beating, and the synapses in the brain shut down, like a city during a blackout. The second time is when the dead person’s name is uttered, read or thought of for the last time, after fifty or hundred or four hundred years. Only then is the person really gone, erased from life on Earth.
A chilling and gripping double portrait of a young man who became a torturist and a family that would have been an entirely different one had Norway not been invaded in 1940.
What turns the bashful shoemaker’s son Henry Rinnan from Trøndelag into one of the most hated criminals in Norwegian history; a double agent killing Norwegians for the Nazis? And why would a Jewish family want to move into Rinnan’s headquarters shortly after the war, in the house that for many became the very symbol of the atrocities committed during the German occupation?

Spanning over four generations, Simon Stranger skillfully constructs a story consisting of the most beautiful and painful elements of human life in this epic and ambitious novel, pieces that when put together also becomes the history of his own family.

Next, I’ll be reading:
The Moomins and the Great Flood by Tove Jansen

This is a cute, little book that I’ve wanted to read for a long time, and now I’ve finally gotten around to borrow it from a friend. I might sneak a read of this before I finish The Storm Crow, as it is only about 50 pages long, and it looks sweet. Also, I’ve loved the Moomin universe since I was a child, and as this is the first book, I’m excited to see where it all started!

Blurb:
“What sort of thing are you?” asked the little creature.
“I’m a moomintroll,” answered Moomintroll, who had had time to feel brave again. “And this is my mother…”
And so, for the very first time, we meet the young Moomin, Moominmamma and Sniff as they search through the forest and flood for a long lost Moominpappa, last seen wandering with the Hattifatteners. Along the way, in a series of delightful adventures, they encounter Hemulens, stranded kittens and the blue-haired Tulippa.

What are you reading, this cold January day? We’ve got a bit of snow now, and all I wanna do is just curl up in a blanket with these books, and watch winter cover the ground.
Have you read any of these? Have you done a WWW post this week? Leave it in the comments, I’d love to have a look!

Have a wonderful day,
-Andrea x