Picture Perfect: Celebrate

Love is
composed of
a single soul
inhabiting two bodies.
(Aristotle)


© Photos: Riihele. All rights reserved.

Love is an act of
endless forgiveness,
a tender look
which becomes a habit.
(Peter Ustinov)

This is my daughter’s wedding bouquet taken by me
in July 2008 at the reception in Ireland.

P.S.
The ‘filler’ plant is the Lady’s Mantle aka Alchemilla.
which belongs to the Rosaceae family of plants,
the same as the roses, strawberries,apples and almonds, for example.

HUMOUR: Pickled Onions

Some while back Noizy had a photo of an Irish pub in Maine in his blog on 360 and the name of the establishment was:

The Pickled Onion!

My comment was this:

HEEEH!! lol

I think that the onion is not the only one that is getting pickled in that establishment!!

Tis for now, Rii

European Commission announced that the list of products and services to which Regional Indications apply will be updated on January 1st 2008. New items on the list will be Irish pubs (Ireland), saltibarsciai (Lithuania), Koksksu (Malta), Kiselo mljak (Bulgaria)

“Also the protection of the Geographical Indication of Irish pubs is an important step towards including cultural expressions in the GI Regime. Geographical Indications have proven themselves to be very effective in protecting products ranging from Cheese to Wine and Sausages. We hope to be equally effective in protection authentic European cultural expressions. Next year we hope to include such diverse cultural phenomena as the Sirtaki dances from Greece, Latvian folk stories known as Dainas and Finnish smoke saunas, known as Savusaunas.” (Jean-Claude Hulot, Chairman of the Committee for Regional Indications)

A geographical indication (such as “Roquefort”) testifies to the link between a given quality, reputation or other characteristic of a product, a service or a cultural expression and its geographical origin. There are approximately 700 GIs registered under the Regulation today.

http://www.eucgi.eu/?page=press&article=13467

ROTUNDA Hospital & Becoming Mother


Although there are many trial marriages… there is no such thing as a trial child. (Gail Sheehy)

Giving birth is compared to running a full marathon. Maybe, as I have never heard this before by anybody, but could it not be said that, the baby who is trying to be born also is running her/his own mini-marathon! I really do think that it is so. It does require so very much energy and stamina to bring it about for both the mother and the child. It was in the antenatal classes in Ireland that this fact about the marathon for the mother was told to us by our trainer, who was a midwife and a mother of six. Here is a link to the Baby University.com. Yes, there is such a thing! The baby with the mortar board on his head looks absolutely cute & clever.

The one thing that the newly-baked mama herself is in great need of more than nearly anything else is one’s own mum in fact. This is the time that she needs the most assurance and advice – that she is doing the right thing with this little totally helpless creature. Things like: what to do in times of crisis – yes, one needs one’s own mama more than any other time in one’s life! My Mum died very young, just three months before my first daughter was born, actually. My paternal Granny had died ten days before my mum, so there was a double funeral for them in Finland which I could not make because I had had the risk of miscarriage for the entire nine months and was not allowed to fly. Then the obstetrician gave me permission a week later after the funeral had been to fly over to Finland. The year after my Mom and Granny had died while I was expecting my second daughter, my younger brother was killed in a traffic accident in Finland which made it all so much tougher. I associate giving new life with death, in fact because of this.

I do not take having the girls in any way for granted because the ‘road’ to have them was paved with unbelievable obstacles all the way; even at the delivery there were never the guarantee that they and I would come out of it all in tact and alive! Not once. I gave birth to a dead baby and that ranks as the saddest of the saddest things that have happened to me, ever. I would have loved to have sons as well, but them I lost in miscarriages.

It is a funny as odd thing that one gets these repeated false labour alarms and then they reverse in the last minute and stop completely, but then when the real thing comes, it comes with a bang and there is no turning back. So when the birth got really going, I had to make my way to the Rotunda Hospital because the waters had broken – the oldest maternity hospital in the world for it was founded in 1745. Such an apt name for a maternity hospital, methinks. One goes in rather rotund and comes out lean. The delivery itself would not get going the right way so I was put into an annex in the hospital where there was a whole bunch of all the social classes in a jumbled mix and I was attached to a drip with hormone Oxytocin* – that is supposed to speed up the delivery. Sounds snobbish to talk about the ‘classes’ but it is so. Yes indeed, the class division system in Ireland is very well and alive, in every way: hospitals, housing, education – you name it!!

The mixture was a colourful circus as anything: the one mum that I do remember very clearly is this one who was just about to give birth – finally – and to be rolled into the delivery room, when her sister and mother came in with the ‘glinkety-glinkety’ sounding bags into the ward at the non-visiting hours of the day and said to the poor thing while giving a hefty slap on the back of her, even though she was already doubled-up with the sheer agony and pain:

“Have you produced anything yet? We came to celebrate!!”

She could not reply them at all. Don’t remember what the nurses said to them but out they eventually were ushered out by the staff.

When my agony finally came to an end after a day and a half – I said to himself straight after the delivery that:

‘Funny, that the music has just been put on?!’

‘Oh no’, said he, ‘it has been on the whole time!’

I had not heard a thing until the very end of the end! So – the music is not there to soothe the nerves of the mamas but the papas & the staff!

“Now the thing about having a baby –
and I can’t be the first person to have noticed this –
is that thereafter you have it.”

(Jean Kerr)

Tis for now. Riihele – in the reminiscing mode. xx

* the word ‘oxytocin’ is from the Greek word ‘oxutokia’ meaning ‘sudden delivery’ (as oxy- =sharpness and tokos = ‘childbirth’) Well, it sure caused the birthing to be sharp, don’t know so much about the ‘sudden’ as it was an age before the Baby finally popped out!!

Picture is off the net.

Incidents & Such Like: EEJIT!

This is an Incident that happened many years ago in Ireland.

I have divided The Incidents into The Comical, The Dangerous and The Thinking About Them Ones. This one belongs to the first mentioned ones The Comical. The story is like this:

We have this Irish/American family as very good friends and we were used to spending a lot time with them while they lived in Ireland as well. She – the Lady of the Family – is and was one of the greatest RT-therapists of all-time and we did have such time-consuming sessions of the same female pursuit. My daughters were no problem to have tagging along as they are so into the RT- retail therapy themselves; the trickier ones were her three sons that failed to see, neither to understand the finer points of the said pastime. They had to be bribed to not to complain nor to sigh deeply every five minutes, never mind not to have fits and so on. That was always the hardest part of every shopping trip.

We were going to head one morning to a session and to make the experience smooth for all, we got the older boys to agree to be at their best behaviour but the last and also the toughest one to convince was always, Daniel, the youngest son of just a bit older than one year but who had such an amazing command of words for his age.

Daniel in his diapers, cherubic as always, was there leaning on the counter looking like a casual cowboy while drinking his morn bottle when we were going to put clothes on him, telling him at the same time that how great he was and what a brilliant time we were all going to have and did the marketing-the-idea-bit to him to the T; as we thought anyway.

Saying:

“If you are a really, really good boy in the shops, you will get to go for a ride in the Postman Pat Wagon in the shopping centre!”

Daniel thinks and ponders for a moment, takes off the bottle of his lips, still leaning casually and says:

“Postman Pat is a Flippin’ Eejit anyway!!!”

Am afraid we lost the plot at that stage for we started to laugh in hysterics and he won that round.

Anytime after that when we see the toy or the programme on TV, what Daniel said pops to our minds and makes us roar laughing once again.

Tis for now. Riihele xx.

* Eejit is Irish expression for Idiot.

Belfast, Belfast…

Belfast city scene

Photo of Belfast is off the Wikipedia site.

“Belfast from the Irish Béal Feirste meaning “The sandy ford at the river mouth” is the capital of Northern Ireland. It is the largest city in Northern Ireland and the province of Ulster, and the second-largest city on the island of Ireland (after Dublin). In the 2001 census the population within the city limits (the Belfast Urban Area) was 276,459, while 579,554 people lived in the wider Belfast Metropolitan Area.This made it the fifteenth-largest city in the United Kingdom.” Wikipedia

Here is a memory of days long ago: BONEY M video and song BELFAST

“DESTINATION 360” on Belfast:

”Belfast, Northern Ireland has always had a fierce, often bloody history. The Troubles of 1960 to 1994 have not faded from Ireland’s consciousness, but active negotiations and peace efforts have soothed this strong activist region. Unlike many other Irish regions, present-day Northern Ireland is a province under the rule of the United Kingdom. After decades of political turmoil, violence, and activism, Belfast Ireland has at last found some degree of peace, when a cease-fire between the British and the IRA was called in 1994. The cease-fire continues to this day, although the long-seated division between British supporters and IRA supporters still lingers.”


BELFAST PEACE LINES – WALL- to segregate the communties: ”The Peace Lines are a series of separation barriers ranging in length from a few hundred yards to over three miles, separating Protestant and Catholic neighbourhoods in Belfast, Derry and elsewhere in Northern Ireland. The stated purpose of the barriers is to minimize intercommunal sectarian violence between Protestants and Catholics.

The barriers themselves consist of iron, brick, and steel walls up to 25 feet high, topped with metal netting, or simply a white line painted on the ground similar to a road marking. Some have gates in them occasionally manned by police, which allow passage by day, and which are closed at night.

The first barriers were constructed in the early 1970s, following the outbreak of “The Troubles”. Originally few in number, they have multiplied over the years, from 18 in the early 1990s to 40 today; in total they stretch over 13 miles. Most are located in Belfast. In recent years they have become locations for tourism. Black Taxis now take groups of tourists around Belfast’s Peace Lines, trouble spots and famous murals. (Wikipedia)

Belfast is so very near to Dublin in the Southern Ireland and yet so far. What that? Well, the mentality of the Northerner compared to the Southerner is miles apart, in almost every way. Where the Dubliner and the rest of the population in the south are laid-back, witty, fatalistic and not-so-terribly efficient in whatever they do, the Northerner is uptight, serious, strong willed and highly efficient in his/her basic nature.

The very first time I went to Belfast was just four days after arriving in Ireland. There was a family funeral there. In Ireland it is of utmost importance to be there and to support the people that have had the sadness of death in the family. People go by the hundreds into the funerals and it is normally considered an excusable reason to take time out in the middle of one’s working day to attend a funeral.

Did you know that the Titanic was built in Belfast in 1912, on Harland and Wolff which had the largest shipyard in the world? And, have you ever heard of the Belfast Sink?

Tis for now. Riihele xx

Incidents & Such Like: ANKLES

Ankles

We have very good friends over in Ireland whom we used to be in and out of their house constantly as they lived quite close to us and vice versa. The Man of the house was piling on the ounces and the pounds with the Good Life until they became stones and then he got the brilliant idea that he would lose some of the excess weight by cycling. And cycle he did, miles after miles, up and down the hills of County Wicklow!

Very good idea indeed.

But the snag in the story is this that he more he exercised, the more he ate, so there was no difference to the bulk on his body; it remained the same no matter what he did. This went on for months on end. He cycled twice as much, eating three times the usual amount.

Get the picture.

One time we were over in their house and M. was in his cycling shorts just back from his gruelling spurt on the bike, when he says to me:

“Look, look, Rii, I have lost a lot of weight!!!”


I look, look and look bit more, but do not see any difference on the cuddly bod, so I reply to him:

“Where, where M did you lose weight, around your ankles, is it?!”


He and everybody else burst out into roaring laughter. His Mrs had the best laugh of all, actually. Tearful so she was with the hilarity of it all.

Tis for now. Rii xx

As far as I am aware, he is still cycling away, eating the good food….

But he is happy.

Incidents & Such Like: PUTTY

PUTTY

The fact of the matter is that Donald Duck and I share the same predicament in being persons for whom things happen – whether one is looking for them to happen or not!! Sad things, mad things, glad things, do roll out in a never-ending roller coaster. I have said in another entry that I am rather lively and energetic of meself’ and tis so very true as all sorts of incidents tend to happen me DD-like wherever I go! Never a dull moment in me life, I am telling you.

This incident happened to me when I had just about arrived in Ireland all those years ago. Well, the moral of the story is this:

How (not) to make an unforgettable impression on your in-laws-to-be. And to stand out like a sore thumb, to boot!!

We – that is the mother-in-law, the father-in-law, himself and I, were sitting by the table in the kitchen a January evening after Tea – read: dinner, as it is called in Ireland – and it was very cold and draughty inside because of the single pane, large windows in spite of the heavy-lined curtains, so says this new daughter-in-law-in-the-making:

“Why don’t you insulate the windows
to keep the heat in,

because that is what we do in Finland and Sweden?

I do not know the name of the thing that one uses to do
the job in English,
but in Finnish it is called, ‘Kitti’, and

in Swedish it is called ‘Kitt’ ( – pronounced: s**t).”


For a second there was absolutely no reaction from anybody, then I realized what I had said and burst into fits of laughter!!

The mother-in-law gives an amused chuckle for that one, but says nothing.

The father-in-law is deadly serious, and says nothing.

Himself gives me a good kick under the table, and says not a thing.

Moi says: ” Oooppss… What did I say?!!”

They must have been all thinking, ‘ What have we got here?!!’ Strange people them Finns using such a substance for insulations. It just shows that certain words in one language, can have so very different meaning in another. I did not know that the word I was looking for was, putty. Ever after that intermezzo, I most certainly do!

Tis for now again until the next posting. Riihele xx.


* The in-laws were of the age that they could have been my grandparents, so to say a thing like that in their hearing was just not normally done.
Picture is off the net.