Friday, September 30, 2011


It got up to 70F in Oslo today.

On September 30th. I wore sandals and a sleeveless top today. On SEPTEMBER 30TH.

That's freaky warm for here.

Supposed to be really nice tomorrow, too. Supposedly it got up to 80 in London today. Maybe I should head over there. That extra 10 degrees sounds nice. We didn't really get a good summer here, so I guess this is our payback for the crappy rainy summer we DID have. An Indian summer.

Last year I remember September was really cold, unseasonably cold and early. In our building we have shared heat, so the rule is that the heat comes on in October and gets turned off end April. They took pity on us last year and turned the heat on in mid-September, it was too cold to try to make it to October. We had frost on the inside of the windows. This year we seem to be ok, we'll make it into October fine. This last gasp of summer is a wonderful gift.

I had a nice after work happy hour enjoying the sun with some girlfriends and then (after 5 hours of drinking) headed home in time to catch "Diamonds Are Forever" on tv. Just as wonderfully cheesy as I remember. Jill St John was not exactly the Meryl Streep of her time, was she?

Thursday, September 29, 2011

texpatriate approved

IMG-20110929-00815.jpg by karlakp
IMG-20110929-00815.jpg, a photo by karlakp on Flickr.

Now THIS is what rain boots should look like. Just got them today, sent on from the States by my mom.

Fall is coming

It's a beautiful sunny day. We are having an Indian summer, so the weather people tell us. It will be almost 70 degrees in the next couple of days.

But it won't last.

The days are already shorter. Mornings are colder. And darker. I am already feeling that Fall lethargy. I can't get up, I'm tired all day, and my energy levels are shite. I'm forcing myself to work out, to walk, to move, to stay out of bed.

I rode my bike to work today. It's probably one of the last days I will be able to do so. Once it gets icy, once the leaves are too thick on the ground, I don't ride my bike because let's face it, I'm a klutz and the likelihood of me falling off the bike due to slippery leaves or ice is fairly high. So I am enjoying it while I can. Riding my bike makes me feel like a kid, like I am flying, I truly love everything about it (except, maybe, some of the hills I have to go up.) I will miss my bike when I have to park it for the winter. I will miss that little energy rush I get as I fly down the hill through the crisp morning air to work. I bust in to the office lobby with pink cheeks, hair crackling with static, elevated heart rate, faster breath....I feel alive.

When winter comes I will walk when I can or take the bus. The bus saps my energy, I don't like it. Cranky people packed like sardines into jerky busses, no one being particularly polite or pleasant. We are all resigned to the fact that we are cattle on the way to the slaughter that is the daily grind of work. Oddly enough, I like my job, but that damned bus ride just feels so bleak. I think I might try to shake it up by bringing my iPod and listening to comedians en route. I can bust out laughing to the raunchy comedic stylings of Patton Oswalt, Bill Hicks, Louis CK and Craig Ferguson. I can be a ray of slightly mad sunshine in an otherwise humorless world.

Or maybe I am just that crazy red headed lady with the wierd glasses on the #20 bus laughing at nothing. I'm kind of ok with that.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

It's all kind of wierd right now

Last night was just a wierd night.

Rich came home drunk and lordly, so sleep was rather fitful due to snoring and general noisy-man-in-bed issues. (Honestly, the only orifice he was not making noise out of was his ears.) I was tossing and turning, tired but somehow wired, and just could not sleep.

And that's when I saw it.

The cat in our bedroom window. INSIDE.

Granted, I didn't have my glasses on, but I know a cat shape when I see one, and that was a cat, and it jumped down from the windowsill and then just....disappeared.

I would like to mention, we live on the third floor. I would also like to mention, we do not have a cat. (There has been some scaffolding outside our kitchen window, so it could, ostensibly, have come in through the cracked kitchen window, but I would have heard that with all the glass and tchotchkes on the windowsill. Even so, that is one AGILE cat.)

So the cat disappears, I jump up and am all like, "THERE IS A CAT IN OUR FLAT!" which made me giggle as it was very Dr Seuss like, in a grown up, urban sort of way.

Rich staggers up, lets out a RESOUNDING fart, and we commence cat searching, though I am pretty sure that the sonic boom of his ass-cannon probably deafened the cat and it now lay stunned and twitching under the bed (which we gingerly checked.) (I mean if it was feral cat, and you go sticking your face under the bed...that seems a good way to get your face scratched all to shit, no?)

No cat anywhere, but there was a good fug settling over the bedroom due to the continued resonance of Rich's over active blowhole. Maybe we could smell the cat tear gas. (Well, that's how it was affecting me, anyhow.)

We gave up on the cat, I tried to air out the room a bit, and back to bed.


The laundry-drying rack in the dining room fell over. The cast must be in there.

Race in to the room, laundry rack down, balcony door open (SOMEBODY forgot to close it when they wandered out there in a lordly state, hmmm, I wonder who) but no cat to be seen, and believe me, if that cat* could have gotten onto our third floor balcony via the vertiginous brick walls that surround it, well, then, it deserved to be in our flat.

So I have no idea. Is it in here, or isn't it? Finding a cat that wants to not be found in this big ol' rambly apartment would not be easy, I can tell you that. Is there a cat detector somewhere? How does one find a cat that does not want to be found? (And I think of that show "Hoarders" where people find dead things in their houses they didn't know died, and I go ARGH. I mean, we are by no means hoarders, but this is a large flat with lots of hiding places.....)

My friend Jackie has a dog that she suggests might be effective in ferreting out a cat, she could bring him by. I think we may need to have the dog over for a sniff......

*And then Rich said it....."Maybe it was a rat. A big Norway rat." Fucker. THAT IS NOT HELPFUL.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

why I have a in the basket

IMG-20110924-00806.jpg by karlakp
IMG-20110924-00806.jpg, a photo by karlakp on Flickr.

Me and my bike. I love riding with fresh flowers in the basket so much that I take the long way home from the flower shop. Here I'm at the fountain at Vigelandsparken. The blue bag on the back of the bike is my groceries. Tomorrow's to-be-marinated and grilled spareribs are in there. Precious cargo, front and back!

what s wrong with this picture?

IMG-20110924-00804.jpg by karlakp
IMG-20110924-00804.jpg, a photo by karlakp on Flickr.

These two things are not like each other. They should not be in such close proximity on the shelf!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Perry for President? Not if you are a woman!

Let me make this abundantly clear: if you are a woman, you should not vote for Rick Perry. EVER.

See, he doesn't respect you. He doesn't care what you think. To him, you are nothing more than an assortment of reproductive organs with no brain, thoughts, or actual mode of coherent intelligence attached. You are there to make babies. Babies that he won't pay for of course, because you probably don't have health care. (And really, you slut, why are you having sex in the first place?)

Nope, you are merely a uterus, one that can be invaded by the government if you decide to not have a baby, and one that doesn't and shouldn't have the otpion of being used when YOU see fit.

So in a nutshell: Rick Perry doesn't think you matter. He won't allow you to have reproductive freedom, he wants you to have that baby, but in a Christian way, of course, but even then he won't help you pay for it because he's cut reproductive health care in Texas AND he has made insurance more expensive.

So if you want to be looked at as a uterus, and nothing more, and you think you will never ever need health care or birth control for your own lady parts, or insurance for that, then go ahead and vote for that guy. If you think freedom of choice in light bulbs is more important than freedom of control over your OWN BODY, vote for Perry. If you agree with his statement that he didn't want to 'micromanage the behavior of adults' by banning texting while driving (which bill he vetoed), but it's ok to shove a sonogram wand up a woman's hoohoo even if SHE DOESN'T WANT IT, and that is somehow not a violation of for Perry.

Me? As a woman who cares for the wellbeing of other women, and one who is tired of being treated like my head and my body are two separate entities, that guy is anathema to everything I believe, think about, appreciate and support. I think he is an evil hypocrite hiding behind a veil of Christian hypocrisy and prejudice.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I wish I was there now, Tunisia 2008

I found this picture in my computer, it's from our trip to Tunisia in 2008. Oh I wish I was there now, drinking their wonderful rose, eating those amazing olives, and about to have a great meal of freshly caught seafood while being serenaded by two astonishing musicians from North Africa that I swear made me want to get up and dance and holler. Most amazing music ever.

We got there a bit earlier than the rest of the diners and watched the place fill up, full of families and celebrations and a wedding party and life and fun and happiness. We were on a pier on the ocean, and watched the sunet while the fishermen came in with their catch of the day. I was wearing a dress that I absolutely adore (so comfy and fun to wear and rather gorgeous if I do say so myself) and there was nothing about that evening I didn't enjoy.

You gotta remember moments like that, they sustain you on chilly dreary days like today.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

fall colors

IMG-20110917-00794.jpg by karlakp
a photo by karlakp on Flickr.

Signs of Fall already coming on strong. I suspect an early winter. Argh.

Monday, September 12, 2011

September 11, 2001

10 years ago today. Woke up to the news of a bomb or something in NYC, then saw the planes, and the buildings on fire, and things got worse from there. I was due to start a brand new job the next day and sincerely wondered if I need bother.

Rich called from South Texas, he was with clients. The clients were stranded due to the no-fly rule and needed to get back to Canada ASAP. Rich was volunteered to drive them back. He was leaving that day. it would take at least a week. At the time he had already been gone over a month, managing his crew, so it would be at least 6 weeks of him having been gone by the time he would get back. I was kind of used to it, but it seemed so much worse this time. And I was worried about him driving all the way to Canada from South Texas.

As the day progressed i got more and more stressed. I felt kind of wierd. It all seemed so surreal. It looked like movie footage but I knew it wasn't, but my brain couldn't really reconcile that fact.

At one point I looked at myself in the mirror and noticed a fullness in my upper lip that was unusual. As the day progressed my upper lip got bigger...and bigger. Soon it was about 4 times its normal size. I couldn't talk normally...I sounded like a character out of Fat Albert.

I called my friend Julia and asked her if maybe she could take me the the hospital, as I was having some strange reaction to something. She kindly accompanied me, after teasing me about my pronunciation of things. It *was* kind of funny, really.

The hospital was not too busy, everyone was glued to the TV, but they saw me and quickly and half-heartedly diagnosed stress related hives and gave me some anti-anxiety meds. They helped, but not fast enough to get my upper lip down by the next day.

The next morning I showed up at the new workplace at 9 sharp, with a gigantically puffy upper lip, (my new boss said, curiously,that I looked different from the interview), a husband on a cross-country international road trip for two weeks, and a country that would never be the same again.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

12 things at once

While I type this my husband is talking to me. I'm also thinking about work and the day I had. And I'm typing and running water for a bath.

Multi tasking? I'm your girl.

Today I took a young coworker of mine out and showed her how the old pros vintage shop. It was fun. I handed her stuff, told her to try it, and I'll be damned if it didn't look awesome on her. It was a perfect storm of style, shopping, my practiced sense of fashion style and history and her young person sense of funk and adventurousness. She was impressed by my ability to find the good stuff and I was impressed by her instant acknowledgement if something worked or didn't.

Really, I should be a personal shopper or a stylist. I can just TELL if something works.

Vintage shopping in Oslo can be really awesome. Prices here are cheap for old stuff (Norwegians don't really go for used stuff) and the selection is pretty good. Especially, oddly, for leather.