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No part of my body hurts (hooray!), a colleague said I looked slimmer overall (hooray), and the sun is shining.

Added to which I’m now able to see the earrings I’m wearing when looking in the mirror (which I couldn’t do when I had the classic cortisone “moon face”, heck – I couldn’t even see my earlobes!)!

Hoorays all around, eh?! Oh, and AIK is going to beat Ellos (read: Elfsborg) tonight. 🙂

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Because I can! 😊 

Sweden’s main kiosk chain is celebrating spring with half price on all ice cream 😳👏🏻 This is my fave – Magnum with almonds 😜


Now I’m off to football- forza AIK! 

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This is my 11th year as a season ticket holder for AIK, Sweden’s biggest and best team. 

I’m usually very inspired at the start of the season, but this year I’m more like “meh”. Don’t know why.

Anyway, tonight was this season’s first game, against Sundsvall GIF. A game we should’ve won, but only tied… 

The tifo at the start of the game

 

Here’s an awesome 90 second video – in English! – about the club.

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I’m on the couch watching world cup x-country skiing from beautiful Canmore, in Alberta, Canada. 

We have friends that live there, lucky ducks. We’ve visited them and stayed over, and I’ve also passed through on several occasions. 

But what I haven’t done is listened to the “Mike, from Canmore” skit. Ever! When I was a high school student in Albertain 94-95, I remember my brother, mom and dad in the host family often referring to it, and thus I thought of it when watching the skiing tonight…

Funny how things can pop up in your memory twenty years later. The brain is certainly interesting! 😊  

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Today is the day of Vasaloppet – the world’s biggest cross-country skiing race. It starts in Sälen and ends in Mora, both in Dalarna. The distance covered is 90 km, which takes the winner just over 4 hrs, depending on the conditions, and your average skier about 9-10 hrs!

For those of us not participating, tradition gives us a long morning on the couch having breakfast, and perhaps blueberry soup 🙂

It always takes place the first Sunday in March and has nearly 16 000 participants. They all start at the same time – 16 000 of them!!! Imagine the chaos… Here’s a video showing the start of the race in 2013:

The history of the race is that Sweden’s first king, Gustav Vasa, escaped the Danish troops on skis between these very towns in 1520. The actual race started in 1922.

Could you ski 90 km? Could you ski for 9-12 consecutive hours?! I could not!

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The past few days have made me realize how some of my hobbies are very un-female. They are in fact very male.

This crossed my mind at the soccer game on Wednesday, as I was cherishing the goose bumps I always get when the crowd sings “Vi ser hur solen stiger över Råsunda“, and I was looking around me at all the singing men holding their scarfs up, turning the stadium black and yellow. I couldn’t see a single woman. Not one! I know there are a few (literally) in the area close-ish to where we sit, but none of them were visible at that very moment. And I don’t mind. On the contrary. I like getting a glimpse of what it’d be like “to be” a guy.

The other time I was struck by being one of very few women was yesterday, when A and I were at the Stockholm Beer & Whisky Festival. We both love beer (we’ve been called beer snobs more than once!), and A brews his own here at home in the kitchen, so it was a great day for us (we sampled no less than 21 different brews!). Perhaps it comes as no surprise that the majority of the people at a beer event are men, but again – I kind of liked it. Another glimpse into a world that’s not mine 🙂

Good thing I’m wedding planning too, get som balance in my life 😉

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XC tracks in Orsa Grönklitt - beautiful conditions!

…I’ll ski there too I once had a t-shirt that read. Still have it, in fact. I got it on a ski trip in Canada in the 90’s. Back then I was all about alpine skiing, now I’m more into XC-skiing. For many reasons – it’s cheaper, it’s much better in terms of excercise and it’s quite social.

This past weekend we went to Orsa in Dalarna with my “sports club” at work, just like we have the last two winters. This year however, we’d managed to time the coldest weekend of the winter – sporting some 20 degrees Celcius below zero on Saturday, and warming up (!) to 15 below on Sunday.

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Cold, colder, coldest. I was exhausted too. And cold.

I’d pretty much brought all my winter gear, and yet figured it’d be a good idea to invest in a fleece balaclava. One of my better decisions this winter. As long as you kept moving it wasn’t so ad, but once you stopped…brrrr! Freezing! 
 
We managed to ski 12,5 km before lunch, and after treating some abraisons on my heals (I never learn) we set out for another 11,5 km in the afternoon. It nearly killed me. A, who had come along for the weekend, forgets from time to time that I’m: older than him, a woman, overweight and have a body riddled with arthritis. Thus, he tends to expect too much from me. Darkness was falling too, and it got so much colder – instantly – when the sun set. 
 

In the evening we went out to dinner at Fryksås Hotell – a lovely three course set meal. Yum! We were all so worth it! 

Breakfast time in the cabin.

 
We stayed in a brand new cabin, all ten of us. It was so nice, with five bedrooms, two bathrooms and a sauna (of course). 
 
The next day, Sunday, it was a balmy 15 degrees below zero, and we got ourselves ready for another day on the trails. I’d intended to ski 10 km, but my heals stopped me after a mere 5 km 😦 I felt week and didn’t perform as well as I’d hoped, but I simply couldn’t go on.
 

Instead I skied through the forest over to Smidgården in Fryksås – the best lunch place, possibly ever. The wiews are stunning, the cakes wicked and the lunches both yummy and filling.

Views toward Orsasjön, Lake Orsa, from Smidgården in Fryksås.

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