Long hiatus, I didn’t mean to leave this blog dormant for three whole years.

24 Nov

Busy with work, and stuff. And I have been trying to get some novels done. The plan has been to get several ready, and then start to publish again so I can keep some sort of schedule going. But it has been damn slow going, and there are only a few done now, and they still need a lot of edits before they are even close to publishable.

I can do this… (whimpers).

On a more serious note:

One thing which did stop me almost completely for nearly two years now was an experience nobody thinks they will get because it is so damn unlikely.

I was an eyewitness to a terrorist event in my country. A Moroccan man who had got here pretending to be an asylum seeker from Near East decided to go for an amok run. For ISIS, it seems, at least according to what he said in his trial. He used knives, and started stabbing random people on the local market square, then running towards an other square in the city, while attacking people on the way.

He killed two, wounded eight before the police got there. I saw one of the stabbings, of one of the victims who lived, and the useless resuscitation efforts of one who died.

These things happen now. And they scare us. But most of us still think that it will be something you read about in the papers, not something you see with your own eyes. After that one somebody made a calculation online that you had a somewhat higher probability to win a lottery than to have been there – much less end up as one of the victims.

But somebody always wins the lottery too. Why else would we play?

This is not a political blog so I am not going to write any more of this. Just this: if something is unlikely it does not mean it will never happen to you. So be prepared. Even for the highly unlikely. Think what you would do if it DID happen to you. Set aside some time to think up a few plans. It has been said that the ones who survive in the unlikely accidents or anything – ship sinking, your house burning, something like this, anything – are the ones who did. Don’t scare yourself to death, but make up a plan. Be at least some sort of prepared.

One of the victims who died was an older woman who was said to have just stood there, looking, when he went for her and hit her with his knives (he had two, one in both hands. Common kitchen knives, bought from Ikea if I remember the news stories correctly). Maybe she did just stand and wait because she just couldn’t process what was happening. Who knows, but I assume it’s likely.

So have a plan. Even for the most unlikely thing happening. So if it does you have at least some idea what to do, and don’t just stand or sit there or flail around in a panic.

I just stood there too, and he ran right past me. So I got lucky.

And I don’t much like the idea that I am maybe alive just because of random luck.

And of course I’m lots of late…

23 Aug

California coast

California coast

California coast

California coast

California coast

So guess what I did on my summer vacation.  🙂 There are over a thousand photos, but of course I will not put them all here. Next days, lots of generic landscapes, most of them from desert areas. I was mostly taking photos while thinking in terms of “reference photos for painting” so most of them are something that might go for the background of something. But perhaps somebody can use them for something else too. Feel free (since I would not be able to stop you anyway I figured I might as well give permission, but that permission is only for non-commercial uses – maybe I can’t do much if you start selling them, but I will definitely try if I find out. And as to the non-commercial uses I would of course very much appreciate a mention of whose photos they are. Maybe even a link or something…). Some are decent, some more or less out of focus, it was a new camera for me and automatic settings or not I managed to get some of those like that bad shot of Golden Gate. Not a good photo, somewhat usable as a reference one, I like the clouds and the colors.

Still here

29 Apr

Okay, I’m still alive. Just pretty busy with all kinds of things. I will start posting on the blog in the beginning of July. Paintings, drawings, photos (new camera!), snippets of stories and occasional other stuff. Promise. 🙂

Testing remedies for itching part 1

4 Sep

Yes, still itching. My arms and some other parts of my anatomy look as if I had goose bumps on them, and the itching is still bad enough that it wakes me occasionally.


So, antihistamines help, some. But not for long, you need to keep taking them and I don’t think that’s particularly healthy, not if it’s at a rate of a pill every second or third hour. I take them before going to bed, now.


Topical stuff: aloe vera is in some ways best of the things I have tried so far. It stops the itching only for a rather short while, but that is true with the rest of them too, and it dries fast and doesn’t stain or smell. I have tried some essential oils, and peppermint also works pretty well, but then you will smell rather strongly for a while. I have used jojoba, grapeseed and linseed oils for base oils, and linseed oil is supposed to offer some relief from itching too although I noticed no big differences when using it compared to the other two. Next I intend to try coconut oil, by itself and mixed with some essential oils.


Oh yes, linseed oil smells a bit funny too all by itself. Mixed with some essential oil it of course doesn’t matter much as all of them have strong enough smells to mask the smell of the base oil, but if tried by itself, well, I don’t think I’d recommend it to anybody who works in an office or some similar place.


OK, I’ll continue with this after a day or two, I have done some shopping and will be trying several new things in the coming days. 🙂


28 Aug

It’s not over yet. My arms and legs started itching again, and while there is not much red in evidence there are these small bumps all over the skin, you kind of need to look from the side in that kind of lighting where they can cast bit of a shadow, but when you do, yep, they are there.


I went to a doctor and according to him it’s the same hand, foot and mouth disease still. In fact, it’s quite possible this will take several weeks more, maybe even up to half a year, before all the symptoms will be permanently gone. Most likely there is no risk of it becoming any kind of severe again, but the itching may continue (at least it’s much less severe now) for a while yet, and there may be occasional episodes later.


And I may still lose some nails.


Nice.  😦

Status report :)

20 Aug

Itching has mostly stopped, and the rash/hives are mostly gone. A couple of fingernails feel kind of funny, but hopefully that’s just hypochondria (I rather hope I hadn’t been told about that losing your nails stuff…). I got a couple of fresh blisters inside my mouth during the last weekend, but nothing after that.


Okay, maybe it’s almost over, and I get to keep my fingernails.


There have been some promising developments in my private life too, so maybe I can finally get fully back into writing and other stuff – I’m no good when it comes to dealing with stress, I lose the ability to concentrate, or I can do that only sporadically so when there are extra stress factors in my life – and the ones during the last months have been pretty big, lots of old, decades old baggage has surfaced now – I can become rather useless for several other things. I’ll dither, start things, stop doing them, start again, lose focus again, dither around some more… Managing my day job (well, I work nights but anyway) has been about the only thing I have been able to do well enough for nearly four months now.


But as said, things are looking better now. Finally.


So as long as my fingernails stay where they are supposed to… 🙂

and the doctor –

14 Aug

– also thinks it’s hand, foot and mouth disease.


Itches like crazy. Seems this doesn’t cause the rash and hives for everybody, nor does it itch for everybody, but the itching, even severe itching, more often happens to adults. Plus it can be over in a week, or it can last several weeks, although a week is more common. And sometimes people lose at least some of their nails, which at some point just fall off… great. Just great.


There are several somewhat different viruses which cause this, and different people react differently, so no saying beforehand how it will go for you. Most times it’s a very mild disease, but occasionally it can become severe enough to require hospitalization, and it can come in kind of waves – you are sick for a few days, then it seems you are recovering, only to become even more sick after a few better days. And like several other kid diseases more often the worst cases happen when adults get it, kids usually can handle it better.


Okay, I think I will go back to lathering something on my arms. And maybe it’s time to take another antihistamine pill, those seem to help some too.


I could use an old fashioned big blackboard right now. If I was writing ‘I will not scratch my arms’ one thousand times I would not have the time to scratch them. 🙂