Thoughts

More snow

In the night to November 23rd, the second snowstorm in a week struck with about 30 cm snow as a result. Everything covered with white, new snow. Very beautiful. Very early in the season. I normally do not like snow. Bu when it is fresh and clean, it can be beautiful.

See winter-photos here

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First snow

Downstairs and the yard, Friday, November 19th, 2004

Day before yesterday the first snow for this season arrived. It was heavy snowfall with heavy winds all day long and resulted in about 20cms of snow. When it finally stopped snowing, it became cold. Today has been sunny and -5 centigrades. Tonight is even colder. It looks like it is going to continue like this for still a couple of days. It is very early in the season. The neighbors below (a young couple who have no idea about how to tend their piece of garden) have still not moved the garden furniture inside – or an office chair that they brought out some time in August. All is now covered by snow, including their grill.

In the end Ulla called me Thursday. Her daughter Rafaela has now moved in with her now boyfriend and left home. I will go to Ulla tomorrow, see her and her husband Feri and the dog Igor and eat her good food. That will be nice.

Malca also called the other night from Israel. She keeps wanting me to come for a visit. I still feel the safety situation isn’t what I would like it to be to go to Israel. I also cannot afford it presently. Would be good to leave the winter though.

Got the latest brochure from the SF bookstore here the other day. Saw that Stephen Donaldson has released the first part in a third and final trilogy about Thomas Covenant. I’ve read the previous books (and all his other books as well) and am looking forward to go get this one too soon. Stephen Donaldson is one of my favorite Fantasy and SF authors.
The Runes of the Earth (The Last Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, Book 1) Stephen R. Donaldson More info here

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Keeping in contact

When yesterday reorganizing my workroom and making room for some papers, I found Tedy’s letters from 1974-75. All nine (9) of them. Re-read all but one yesterday. Have one more to go. Slow reading for me because of handwritten Hebrew – even if his handwriting is easy to read (compared to letters I get from Malca) – and his letters are long. I really have to write to him. Or call him (calling to Israel from Sweden is a bit too expensive though). He has been on my mind a lot lately. I wish he had email.

I also should call Ulla. I am bad at keeping in contact with people. She is as bad as me with that, which does not make a good combination.

Weather is boring, grey, very cloudy, +5-7 centigrades, some rain. It is November. Worst month of the year when it comes to lack of light and sun. You can get depressed for less.

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Some people…

Some people hate you – and say they do – just because you speak your mind and do not agree with them or to some idea you won’t just accept at face value and agree to it.

Saying they cannot stand you because you do not agree with them leads nowhere. Saying on a mailinglist that “You’re foolish brat. And quite frankly you don’t belong” and “frankly, I cannot stand you” is way out of line. Calling me a brat I should maybe take as a compliment. I am not really in an age where I can be a brat. Call me a bitch, but brat? Bitch I can live with.

That is sad, very sad. For him, not for me. To me it points to a frustrated person that has difficulties listening to other peoples opinions. Maybe he also has difficulties not being agreed to by a woman. I don’t know. I don’t know this person other than by name on a couple of mailinglists.

With that much anger on a mailinglist (for something that didn’t even have to do with politics but ideas about UI for software), maybe it is luck that I am on another continent than he is. If I wasn’t I should maybe have to be scared for what this person might do. As it is, I feel sorry for him. And I don’t scare easily.

PS. I finished reading the Catteni/Freedom books by Anne Mc Caffrey. The fourth one was not at all as good as the three previous ones. Felt like an artificial add-on to the first three.
Am now reading a new book by Julian May called the “Conqueror’s Moon”. It isn’t at all that good as “The Saga of the Pliocene Exile”, “The Galactic Milieu Trilogy” and “The Rampart Worlds”. Those three series I enjoyed a lot. This new book, is.. eh… not sure yet after 151 pages of the first part of the “The Boreal Moon Tale”. We will see if it gets any better further into the story. The beginning was even boring.

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Working for money or for the joy of working

I’ve had plenty of jobs so far in my life. And I have never really been unemployed (not counting one month between DD and DD, see CV, and from Dec 3rd 2004).

To work is essential, not only to earn ones living, but also for learning things and for the exchange of thoughts and ideas between people you work with.

Working can be highly satisfying for many reasons. Either that the pay is good. Or that what you do gives you pleasure and satisfaction. Or gives somebody else satisfaction. Or all of it.

The “all of it” I think is very rare though.

And the “gives you pleasure” part only does that for a while and stops doing it if you don’t get appreciation for what you do in the form of money (pay, salary, bonuses) or other kinds of rewards (happy clients, self-satisfaction for managing to do something which was a kind of a challenge to you, acknowledgement from your bosses).

That the pay is good I think is rare as well. At least that has never happened to me. And I know few people that are really satisfied with they pay.

That the pay is OK to make a living and not much more is more normal.

Some people work for the pay alone and don’t care what they do for getting their salary. They go home when the work hours are finished and never give another thought to their work. I could never work like that in the long run. What I do has to be interesting or challenging, one way or the other.

THE WORK FOR MONEY JOBS

Some of my jobs have been for money alone. Like the secretary-kind-of-jobs.

I worked because I had to support myself. I didn’t have to put much “brain” into the work though. Gave plenty of time to do “other” things.

  • Like being active in the workers union.
  • Like being politically active at nights.
  • Like having my own time that I could spend like I want.

Those jobs weren’t specifically educating though, and seldom taught anything new. With the exception for the years when I worked at the then Arbetslivscentrum (see CV).

Even though my job was mainly administrative, the atmosphere of the place – as it was a research organization – made it a very intellectual place. And I usually say that the years there, working with researchers, taught me to think and to come to conclusions from whatever the line of thought was. It also taught me to find information and to put it together to something useful. They were valuable years, though the job itself wasn’t very inspiring. Except for the last few years when I got into computers and took care of our networks of Macintoshes. That’s what started me in that line of work. At an age of above 40 I found out that I was both logical and technical – who would have thought that? (Some people still have problems taking that in as I don’t fit the usual image of a person working in the IT-sector).

WHAT MOTHER USED TO SAY

My mother didn’t think that having a job was very important. Not for a girl. Mother was a house-wife and was never employed anywhere during her life. She used to say that education was not important for a girl because she would get married and have children anyways. In her view it was enough learning how to type and how to behave and being a secretary should be enough as this was something a girl should do only a few years of her life when waiting to find Mr Right to get married to. And the girl would stop working…

It upset her ever so much when I at the age of 14 said that I would never marry. And that I would never have children. That I wanted an independent life.

Mother didn’t live long enough to see that this was also what I stuck to. Mother died before I reached the age of 20.

MY FATHERS POSITION ON THIS

My father was more pro-education and pro having a job, even though I was/am a girl.

When I wanted to get at least a basic education to eventually go on to University, he was all pro, even though I had to live at home for those years and he, basically, had to support me. For the tuition fee (a school for grown-ups that wasn’t free of charge) and the books I took a loan from the bank (which father in the end paid so I wouldn’t have any debts later). Father gave me complete freedom to do what I wanted, to study what I wanted and to become what I wanted.

Neither of my parents came from families that studied or got into a fancy jobposition. To them studies basically was something not at all necessary. The necessary thing was to be able to support oneself in the end. No matter how this occurred.

But my father by nature was an artistic and creative person who also loved to read and to learn things. He was very open minded. And a good example that you didn’t have to have higher education to be able to think and to learn new things by yourself.

EDUCATION – A NEVER ENDING PROCESS

I eventually passed my G.C.E in the spring of 1966. With very good grades that could get me into any university class I wanted. I applied to some and I did get accepted as well, but I turned it down in the end.

I never did go onto higher education. By then I was to impatient to do that. Since then I have learned what I need to learn for doing what I need to do mainly by myself or by shorter courses. Why waste time on a lot of subjects you will not have any use for in the end anyways?

That is still how I think. And I have never regretted it either. I keep on learning new things all the time. And that is important to do. The brain has to work and to think and to solve problems. Working with computers and solving problems in software and hardware gives plenty of opportunities to do that. And, as the software and hardware change rapidly all the time, there is no end to the learning process.

It doesn’t get harder with advancing age either. At least that’s not my experience. It is all a matter of wanting to learn new things and to be curious enough about them to want to know more. I just hope I will never, till the day I die, stop wanting to learn new thing.

Written 2001-09-22

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