July 10th, 2003


I can add a meeting and a hug to that "LJ survey thing", Anorexia.. Tom Jones..

Up really early.. having some washing to do..

Then quickly make myself ready to go to Uppsala, since I had a meeting with stardream42 at a certain time...

Travelled past Gysinge, where I stopped to have a look at a former railroad-bridge.. Now, there's not been a railroad there in like.. well.. some years.. Think they stopped using it in 1960 or something, and the rails aren't there now. Only the bridge, and it's a pretty cool bridge, with huge iron arches etc..

It's a touch freaky to be on it.. since it's not intended to walk on.. the wooden logs have gaps, and it passes a 300 ft wide, or something, river.. Maybe more.. with a lot of fast, streaming water underneath.. Since you go looking at the bridge, to know where to put the feet.. you see the water underneath.. even if you're not focusing on it.. and you get that strange effect of your body moving one way.. while what you see moves another way.. and it gets kinda hard to keep the balance..

But, it's so beautiful.. I've photographed someone there, and sure wants to photograph someone there again.. Hopefully in a not too long time.. If I'm able to make her go out on the bridge.. Now, it's fairly safe.. but.. not the very safest in the world.. and.. well.. One could get nervous.. Still.. there in Gysing, which is an old enviroment.. 16th - 17th century, there's a lot of very good settings for photographs. Gysinge Inn

A touch later than I thought, I got moving.. and being late.. obviously one ends up behind slow traffic.. and when in Uppsala.. it was hard to find a place to park.. Think I was 15 mins late to Uppsala.. and then it took 15 mins to find a parking lot..

Half ran to the meeting place.. at a lovely store, Thehuset, where they sell all things tea.. :) :) :).

Even if I hadn't met her before etc, I spotted her right away, from the other side of the square..

Always kinda tricky to meet someone you've never met before.. How to.. well.. act.. should one just say "Hi!".. give each other a hug.. and what exactly does one start talking about..
Now.. obviously.. since it's kinda hot day today, and having hurried to get to Uppsala etc, I was slightly exhausted when I came there.. Despite having sat in the car for some time, how come that sitting in a car and sitting on a chair or something isn't the same?, I only wanted to sit down.. get a rest.. and having slept only 4 hrs or something, lean towards something and just.. sleep..
Not in the "full me" mode, exactly..
Well.. I guess we really never did a "start", as such.. We just talked, did stuff, as if we had met before.. (to some degree, that's true, since we've talked on Yahoo Messenger).

If you meet someone you've.. well.. never really met in any way, or talked to (penpal tho, maybe).. compared to someone you've never met in the flesh, but talked too in some way of chatting. How much of a difference do you experience the first 5 - 10 mins?

The first thing I/we did, was to go into Thehuset. Right away found a large mug I so wanted. Really expensive, but it was BIG (It does hold 0.8 liter) and has the image of 2 drawn cats on it. Then went on to buy 3 different kinds of teas. "Vintersaga" (Wintertale). Having something for winter, I saw the name and couldn't resist asking how the tea was, and have a sniff at it. Haven't tasted it yet, but it smelled a lot of citric fruits.. Oranges etc.. "Blåkulla". I don't have a clue what it is. I saw some blue flowers in it. I think it was just the blå/blue in the name. "Blåkulla" is a mythic name, where the witches go every Maudy Thursday to dance with the Devil, and do nasty things to everyone seeing them etc. Then one I've tried before, which is entirely an Uppsala-blend. "Maja Gräddnos". A very known childrens book about a cat with a very short tail since a rat bit it off when the cat was very little, "Pelle Svanslös/Pelle Tailless". Among the characters in that, Pelle's big love, is Maja Gräddnos/Maja Creamnose. Those books was written by Gösta Knutsson who lived in Uppsala, and it takes place in Uppsala. Since it's so well known, 3 million books in print.. a couple of animated films.. a play/musical.. radio-theater etc, Uppsala obviously use it heavily as a symbol, and tourist-attraction, for Uppsala. You sure could buy a lot of postcards, cups etc with a Pelle Svanslös-image, and.. at least one tea :P

Not being exactly sure what to do then, I let her suggest a café, where we went. Had some tea, it being a decent café where they had several kinds of loose-weight tea, instead of the usual tea-bags, a huge, totally delicisious sandwich and something sweet, a chocolate-enhanced meringue thing.
Sitting outside in the lovely weather, we talked about the Lord of the Rings-movies.. I shocked her by not liking the movie-versions that much (Too "predictable" and "nice", as well as feeling more of a run through the events in the book, without much pacing etc. This is in the book, we gotta have it, this is in the book so we're showing it etc etc), and GAAAASSSP!!! I told her I hadn't seen the second movie yet (The reason being that I don't want to ruin the experience of the full-lenght, extended, version, and see that "fresh"). Talked about MOMI in London, and I don't know what else, until I had finished my tea, when we took a short stroll. We saw the Swans they have in a pond there, which had a lot chickens. Well.. they were almost full-size, but hadn't shed their gray small feathers and grown beautiful white feathers yet, and only had very small wings. Then we went around the city park, looking at flowers. Both white and pink water lilys, and all sorts of brightly coloured and very pretty flowers. I teased her for only liking the really clear and bright coloured flowers. Now, it's possible in Uppsala to see a lot of flowers since you've got a huge botanical garden close to the castle, as well as Carl von Linné's garden. Linné studied and lived in Uppsala, and is the one that wrote Systema Naturae which was an attempt at classifying of everything botanical, which worked as the foundation for the system used today. You know.. all those Latin names on flowers, you're never able to learn. Even if Linné wasn't behind that, he being strictly interested in the botanical world, it's a system that has been adapted for a lot of stuff, including the classification of animals. Linné obviously being another thing that Uppsala uses a lot.

stardram42 had another meeting. We met her friend, and it was time to say goodbye. Not sure what to say. It was nice. It was easy to talk to her, we had fun and, even if there were some distance (It was the first meeting after all, and I guess we both kinda tested the grounds a little). Even if we might not exactly go visit each other every other week, I think we'll be able to meet up at times, be friends and have a good time together. My new plan.. get friends in all cities, and hook up with them when you feel like going there :P At least she didn't drag me along to look at furniture and stuff. She's a Libra, and some of my best friends are that. In fact, she's born the 5th of October. I've photographed 3 girls being born October 6, of which 2 has been really close friends (I count one of them as one of my dearest friends). Even if there will never be any romance or anything, I seem to go along great with Libras. (They've got a real problem deciding on things, such as which furniture to buy, while I have a Virgo analytical side which I can use to help them in deciding things, as well as daring to be pretty open with them quite fast, for being me). Do I believe in Astrology. Not really, but there are things that makes one think. As in meeting people. Most of you know I'm extremely shy, and avoid being the center of attention. More often than not, trying to be kind of invisble, and which a lot complain to me about, almost excusing myself for being around. I don't make friends easily, always keeping some distance before, if I ever do, open up. The exception being Cancer. Dunno why. When I meet someone Cancer, after 10 seconds we're talking to each other as if we've known each other for ages. It's like, no introduction needed. Shocked someone I was chatting with once. I didn't know that, but she had lied in her profile, to avoid getting 30. At least postponing it a couple of months. I didn't know her birthday at all, but we just hooked up right away and started chatting. It felt as it does when I meet someone Cancer, so I asked her if she happened to be a Cancer, and it was: How the hell did you know that, and she told me all about that of having lied in her profile, setting a December date etc. Libras, as I said, I've always made great friends with. People I've loved to hang out with and discuss and chat with. I'm not sure I open up that much, but all of them has liked talking about their lives with me, and often come to me with their problems. I've always had it easy with Scorpios. It's always been kinda flirty with those, but it's never ended up becoming anything out of it. More often than not, it's just ebbed out until we've lost contact. As for romance, I do think I've got a preference for Capricorns. Don't know why, but all Capricorns I've met has had qualities as a person I've, unconciously, looked for. Even if I've not know a lot of them, I've always thought them being really interesting and thought them as being "right". I've also thought it real easy to be around them. The one sign I've got a huge problem with is Gemini. They do have a double-nature (Why else would they have that name.. "Twins"). I might go along great with one side of them, but I really clash with the other side of them. If I meet them and they're on the good side, we might go along real great, for awhile. Until their other nature kicks in, where we simply can't stand each other.
This isn't true 100% of the time, but at least 90% of the people I've met. As I said. It makes you wonder.

After having said goodbye, I wasn't sure what to do, if I should go to a couple of selected shops I like, go straight back home. Not at all being in the mood to do anything, the hot sun and being tired I guess. Also, not having a camera that works as it should (I can use it, but only at the furthest tele, or the dirt I managed to get on the inside of the lens becomes a blurred spot in the image). I'm not sure how much you know about photography, but I can tell you, only having a lens that's about 340 - 380 mm in range aren't that practical. Not unless you want to shoot small objects being 200 ft away.. Not good when in a city such as Uppsala, with a lot of really beautiful houses, beautiful streets, bridges etc.. Not unless I'd love to take the car, drive a mile outside of town, to shoot the image :P

I decided to go home, but ended up taking a fairly long way to the car. Thought I'd walk along the nice stream (even if it has made the news lately since a lot of fish, thousands, has turned up dead thanks to some Cyanid effluent, even if that's kinda south of the actual city) they've got running right through the city. Along the way, I remembered one of my friends and the model I've used the most lived somewhere close to the Cathedral, and even if I didn't plan to visit her (if she's even living there still), I thought I'd try to find the street. Just an impulse. It took me right past the Cathedral, which is the biggest one in Scandinavia. Since it's on a height as well, and with the area around Uppsala being a really flat plain, you can see it for miles. I think the furthest distance I've measured as of seeing it, was about 20 Km/12.5 miles. Despite that, you really doesn't get the sense of it being that big. Not until you're really close to it when you really think: "Geez.. It's BIG!". The twin-towers are 119 meters/390 ft high (I wonder if one could go up in them.. Gotta bring frida and check that out :P. Actually, the Cathedral is 119 m/390 ft long as well. I'm not sure how high the actual roof is, but I guess it's that height that makes it feel so big. I'd guess about 35 m/115 ft. The ceiling inside is at27 m/88 ft. I've been inside once, and it's really making you awe at how big it is, and make you feel really small. York Minster isn't exactly small neither, but with the Uppsala Cathedral not being divided into several rooms as York Minster, the room seems to strecht out forever.

Found the street I was looking for, but not being sure what number or what surname she might have know, I couldn't say if she's still living there. Was happy that I found the street, at least, since I only had looked for it on a map some years ago, and only knew in what area to look for it.
Strolled along to the car, enjoying the beauty of the city. It's a slightly weird city. You've obviously got the Cathedral being built in the 13th century. A lot of the old University buildings from the 16th century. Then building from every century up until totally modern, new, buildings. You can walk along a street and walk past a modern, 40's, house with apartments, then pass some old barn/magazine from the 18th century being closest neighbour etc. Despite that mixing, it always feels totally natural. Often with cities, they usualy preserve areas, as in .. you've got an "old town" where all buildings are old, and new shopping areas with nothing but new buildings. Even if it can be nice to walk along some preserved street, one of the big reasons I so much love Uppsala is the mix. That it's irregular. You always see something new. Details you've missed before. For someone loving to just walk around, observe things, and being so visual as I am, it's a real pleasure. Parks, flowers, statues, street signs, old street lights, modern lines, cobble stones, wall with grafitti, wood, stone, plastic, gargoyles, decorations, modern art in a window of a house being 300 years old etc. If nothing of that pleases you, there's always the girls :P Uppsala being one of the two biggest University cities, with mainly (it seems) female students, you sure have a lot of women/girls around, of all kinds. No generalization, but it's kinda fun because such a lot of them look "academic". An awful lot do have skirts that ends a touch below the knees. Practical shoes and long socks. They often have an old style leather briefcase or a leather knapsack etc. A lot of them being kind of attractive in a nerdy/gray way.

I'd love to move there. I would have a lifetime of photographing various sights, as well as portraits of pretty girls. Actually, there's a place about 10 - 15 mins outside of Uppsala, out in the middle of the countryside, surrounded by fields and groups of trees etc, which is the place (except Scotland) where I'd most of all would want to build a house (of the places I've been to). Made it to the car, drove home.. nothing exciting about that. Listened to P1 on the radio, which is a mostly talk-channel. Lots of art, science, debate, news etc.
They talked about Pro-anorexia sites. Often sites, it seems, by girls that's anorectic and being unable to get out of it and feeling miserable about that, they create sites that celbrates it, makes anorexia into something cool, in part to have the pleasure of getting others to become anorectic, to make others suffer beside themself. Scary!!! Actually, the last time I spent some time in Uppsala was with one of the close friends being born October 6, and one of my models, and who grew up in Gysing, suffered from Anorexia, and it sure wasn't anything cool or glamorous about that. She had been in hospital on life-supporting machinery in-between that I photographed her and when I hooked up with her again and visited her in Gysinge and Uppsala. She was better, and in therapy, but far from over it. I photographed her, when she brought a friend over to get photographed, and saw her topless, which wasn't a pretty sight at all. The way she was freezing when you were outside, and getting totally tired and weak after just some short time. Made you so want to help, and it being so frustrating when there weren't anything, really, you could do to help.

They also talked about a major culture-worker strike in France at the moment, which has made a lot of big events having to be cancelled. Theatre-festivals, concerts, movies etc. One of the thing they're protesting is the influence of American "culture", and wanting the right to veto "guest-workers" (USA actually has something similar, which makes it really hard to set up musicals with original artists etc, since all artists has to be American citizens, first of all, unless it's a really unique quality with the foreign artist). I know a lot of people in America complains about the fact that France, more than any other country, works against USA when it comes to American "culture". What few people in USA realize is that USA has extremely little of genuine culture and art. What USA has, in the name of culture, is commercially driven entertainment. Big production companies producing something for a profit, before anyting else. Even if that, in a sense, is a culture in itself, the kind of culture France wants to stop, a lot of people mistake that for genuine art and culture. When one knows so little about culture, not having a deep rooted cultural tradition, it might be difficult to understand how much a genuine culture inhabits the soul.

A completely different thing. There's a concert with Tom Jones on TV, it just finished actually, and as the last song he played the Art of Noise feat. Tom Jones version of Prince's "Kiss". The interesting thing is the way it totally mimics the version found on the Art of Noise album, which, in a sense, makes it hilarious.
The song originally appeared on the album "The Best of the Art of Noise". A greatest hits collection of their songs. As well as being the single from that album. To some degree, a new song/single to sell the compilation I guess. The thing is, Art of Noise mixed in a lot of samples, sounds and melodies from their other songs. You've got traces of Moments in Love, Peter Gunn, Beat Box etc etc. The interesting thing is to hear the live artists, with live instruments, trying to mimic every note and that way playing a lot of the "samples" from the other songs. Even in the live version, a solo glides into Peter Gunn for a few notes, before turning into a few notes of Beat Box etc. I don't know. It does make it slightly ridiculous the way they reveal copying the song note by note and thus playing other songs, instead of coming up with their own solos. It was also interesting to hear they try to mimic certain sounds with instruments, that's originally samples of everyday noise, such as cars etc (which Art of Noise had as an idea. Creating music out of "noise").
  • Current Music
    Tom Jones - Kiss