‘Puter Problems

Yesterday it worked
Today it is not working
Windows is like that

(Margaret Segall, 1998)

Yup, yup, for the past couple of months my laptop (purchased in January 2007) has been acting very much diva like indeed! There is no life at all on the thingy. Zilch, nada, not-a-thing at all presently. There has been days when it has behaved beautifully and i thought all’s well and swell but alas –

‘ deep, d e e p   s i g h…’

First i thought that it was ickle me, but as i have bought this and that to enhance the performance that only gave temporary ‘activity’ to the ‘puter, i had to get to the heart of the matter  and i began to do some serious research on it,  i came across this site regarding my laptop aka HP Pavilion dv 600:

And i quote:

HP has identified a hardware issue with certain HP Pavilion dv2000/dv6000/dv9000 and Compaq Presario V3000/V6000 series notebook PCs, and has also released a new BIOS for these notebook PCs, version F.39 for dv2000/V3000, and version F.3D for dv6000/dv9000/V6000.

If you are a customer in Canada with an HP Notebook model DV2412CA or DV2404CA, do not update the notebook to BIOS version F.39.
If you own an HP Pavilion dv2000, HP Pavilion dv6000, HP Pavilion dv9000 or Compaq Presario V3000, Compaq Presario V6000 series computer, are experiencing no symptoms on your computer, and would like to obtain more information about updating your system to the new BIOS release, please go to the “Update the BIOS to the latest version” section on this page. If you are experiencing one or more symptoms listed below, and your computer meets the product criteria listed below, contact HP to determine whether you are eligible for a free repair.

NOTE: This service enhancement program is available in North America for 24 months after the start of your original standard limited warranty for issues listed below; otherwise your current standard limited warranty applies. Customers who already have a 24 month or longer warranty period will be covered under their existing standard HP Limited Warranty.”

Thus it continues on another page that explains more of what is happening:

Identify your notebook series and product number Using the Service Tag on your notebook, determine if your notebook is one of the series in the table below. Click on your series in the table to see the complete list of included notebook product numbers. If the product number of your notebook is listed in that table then return to the HP Limited Warranty Service Enhancement page and continue to Step 2 for further instructions…”

At Kioskea.net i read some more on this and from there i came across to another place where there were these handy hints by ‘sloanjenny’:

  1. Shut the computer down
  2. Unplug the computer
  3. Take out the battery pack
  4. While the pack it out, hold the power button for 30 seconds
  5. Put the battery back in
  6. Plug it to the AC adaptor
  7. … and Voila!

There should be life on the yoke!!

This is yet to be seen as to my laptop, as i am using somebody else’s computer writing this entry, but i shall keep you posted, if this tip mentioned above worked.

The problem with troubleshooting
is that trouble shoots back. “

Author Unknown

Keep tapping on the ‘puters and have a super-duper week.

Rii xx

Incidents & Such Like: COFFINS

I read the other day Lise’s entry about the rude and inconsiderate use of the mobile phone in public places such as trains and even ladies rooms; and a memory of a most unusual kind came to me.

I used to daily take this bus going long distance and there always were rather colourful fellow passengers so that journey every time went rather quickly. One day a lady came in on the bus in the middle of nowhere, looking very non-descriptive and plunked herself down and started to make phone calls and getting them in return.

And guess what she was trying to sell while cruising in a bus: coffins!! Yes, you read it absolutely correctly. The rest of us were rather intrigued and fascinated. She was describing the colours of the coffins, types and styles of the same and then, of course, the prices came up in the conversations.

No, she was not giving an inch or a cent in reduction. We could hear that the customers on the other end were trying to ‘twist her arm’ but to no avail for she had the ready answer for each client as to why not in a very convincing way. I suppose, the coffin sellers do kind of have the monopoly on their trade; not so easy to do DIY on that line, eh?!

She must have clenched the deal in about four coffins and had a few enquires to boot while on the bus; so one must conclude that the business was booming and that she did extremely well.

As she had entered the bus in a no-place in the nowhere, she exited the bus in a similar kind of place, never saw her again in my travels on that route thereafter. It would have been interesting to know if the deals went through, what her commission was, and how the enquires went as well.

This for now Riihele xx

There is an Irish take on this theme of coffins that used to be a very popular item to buy while in Ireland for tourists. Ireland, and particularly, the Northern Ireland, is famous for its linen did you know? Anyway, there were zillions kinds of printed tea towels with all sorts of motives and whatnot; my favourite was the Irish mother’s letter to her son abroad that went like this:


Letter from an Irish Mother to her Son

Dear Son,

Just a few lines to let you know I’m still alive. I’m writing this letter slowly because I know you can’t read fast. We are all doing very well.

You won’t recognise the house when you get home – we have moved. Your dad read in the newspaper that most accidents happen within 20 miles from your home, so we moved. I won’t be able to send you the address because the last Irish family that lived here took the house numbers when they moved so that they wouldn’t have to change their address.

This place is really nice. It even has a washing machine. I’m not sure it works so well though: last week I put a load in and pulled the chain and haven’t seen them since.

Your father’s got a really good job now. He’s got 500 men under him. He’s cutting the grass at the cemetery.

Your sister Mary had a baby this morning but I haven’t found out if it’s a boy or a girl, so I don’t know whether you are an auntie or an uncle.

Your brother Tom is still in the army. He’s only been there a short while and they’ve already made him a court martial!

Your Uncle Patrick drowned last week in a vat of whiskey in the Dublin Brewery. Some of his workmates tried to save him but he fought them off bravely. They cremated him and it took three days to put out the fire.

I’m sorry to say that your cousin Seamus was arrested while riding his bicycle last week. They are charging him with dope peddling.

I went to the doctor on Thursday and your father went with me. The doctor put a small tube in my mouth and told me not to talk for ten minutes. Your father offered to buy it from him.

The weather isn’t bad here. It only rained twice this week, first for three days and then for four days. Monday was so windy one of the chickens laid the same egg four times.

We had a letter from the under-taker. He said if the last payment on your Grandmother’s plot wasn’t paid in seven days, up she comes.

About that coat you wanted me to send you, your Uncle Stanley said it would be too heavy to send in the mail with the buttons on, so we cut them off and put them in the pockets.

John locked his keys in the car yesterday. We were really worried because it took him two hours to get me and your father out.

Three of your friends went off a bridge in a pick-up truck. Ralph was driving. He rolled down the window and swam to safety. Your other two friends were in back. They drowned because they couldn’t get the tailgate down.

There isn’t much more news at this time. Nothing much has happened.

Your loving Mum

P.S. I was going to send you some money but I had already sealed the envelope.

Incidents & Such Like: NUTS

Incident time again as I am reminded of these incidents that have happened to me or around me and of which I do have a vast collection.

The flights to Helsinki from Dublin used be an all-day affair because at that time there were no direct flights so we either went from Dublin via London or Amsterdam on the first plane. Then we had to take another flight to Copenhagen and/or Stockholm* and yet another as in a third/fourth flight on to Helsinki. Also, many a time we would take a fourth/fifth flight straight away to Oulu which is a town in Northern Finland as well.

So it was very handy to see half the Europe in one foul swoop! Then on the way back the same procedure. It required huge amounts of stamina and a happy disposition to be able to stick all these flights and the delays and whatnot.

This incident happened at the Copenhagen airport – so it was our 4th flight to board that day one after the other. The girls and I were waiting at the gate for our flight from Copenhagen to Dublin when I was sitting a bit further away from the girls as there were no free seats near them being totally engrossed in my own thoughts – wrecked so I was
– when Heli suddenly says to me:

“Look Mum, we got Bon-Bons** with nuts from this nice girl!”

“That’s great as you are so nutty yourselves,” says I.

“Oh, don’t say that Mum or I will crack up! ” – says Heli, six-years-old at the time.

It took just a second or two ’til Becki, Heli and I realized the joke in what had been said and we were having a very merry moment laughing when the girl who gave the sweets suddenly bursts into her own merriment when it went ‘Eureka!’ for her, too!

Never a dull moment in me life. Tis for now. Riihele xx.

* A lot of the times we did: Dublin-London-Copenhagen-Stockholm-Helsinki, that is: four flights in one go. Then the same thing vice versa back home to Ireland.

** Bon-Bon is a candy that often has a center of fondant, fruit, or nuts and is coated with chocolate or fondant. (The Free Dictionary)
Picture is off the net.

The girls used to thrive travelling – still do – and thought that it was so cool to get all these toys and games that the airlines gave to the youngsters to keep them occupied during the flights. You can see by the sheer number of the flights just how many they would get – a set of games & toys per each flight multiplied by the times we boarded a plane! Bagfuls of them; so much so that they would donate to their friends and cousins on either end.

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: 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


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.

My Style of Shopping!


This time the story is this: it was my birthday, so that means the Second of August, and my elder sister came along with me to do some shopping in the town called, the area (Tavastia in English) in question – is that is it is the most straight-laced place in all of Finland, as the Irish would say of a place that is rather uptight and serious. They are not known to be jolly-hearted, joke-cracking people in Finland, if you know what I mean.That reputation of the town did not stop me of ‘chancing me arm’ in trying out to get discounts and the like.

This is what happened:

I was collecting a few rolls of film which had been developed in a particular store which was our first port of call in the town and as we were stepping in, I said to my sister:

‘Do not say anything at all until we are outside the shop, please!’

To the shop assistant I said, who I had seen in our school but did not know as such, that:

‘Do you know that it is my birthday today and I really would like a present from you?’

‘Oh,’ he said laughing, ‘really?’

Then he knocked off a few quid off the cost of the films. I thanked him for the lovely present, of course.

We trotted on to the optician’s where a pair of new specs that had been ordered for me only needing to be collected, so again – the same thing about me birthday and the present

– again a present received in this shop as well.

Then third time lucky, my last store to go to was a shop that sold handbags and I was in need of a new one – stickler for style, may I say

– here again the same spiel with the same result, discount given and gratefully received by yours truly!

All this time my sister had kept silent but as we went out of the very last shop she said:

‘So this is the way to do the shopping?!

Tis for now. Riihele xx.

If one does not ask, one does not get, right?!!! I recommend the method, though I do not insist if the person says ‘no’ – but normally, I do get a very good discount!

Incidents & Such Like: BYE!


I have lately talked an awful lot about Ireland and this happened there as well some years ago. I was working with the students coming from all over the world for ten years and this Incident took place in our home with a most lovely student from Italy.

She would come into the house every time and say:

Then she would leave the house and say:
“Bye, Bye!”

This went on for a good while and then himself decided that we couldn’t possibly let the girl go back to Italy not even knowing the correct basic greetings, so he got up off the dinner table and did the following actions:

He walks out of the house closing the door and immediately comes in saying:


Then he walks back out again shutting the door while saying:


He did this for a couple of times and then the Italian girl gets the Eureka! and says:


From then on the greetings were correct and she was one of the loveliest persons ever that we met. When we told this to some English speaking people they were thinking, that she was a bit ‘thick & dim’ but that is not the case if one keeps in mind that in Italian these greetings are:

Ciao‘ when coming in and

Ciao Ciao‘ when leaving;

so for her the way she was saying made perfect sense!

Tis for now yet again. Riihele xx.

The moral of the story: Never judge the foreigner to be dumb, if you do not know anything about their customs, culture and country or language.

Incidents & Such Like: Kaiser


I have been in Germany a few times and particularly when the Oktoberfest is on, which is an interesting event with some six million people attending it yearly; attending!! Sure. The right expression would be, perhaps, guzzling drinking their way through the entire range of the beers available. This incident did not happen at the Fest but in a store at the centre of Munich where there is a very novel idea which I have not seen the like of in any other country: an area for the gents to sit in a bar-like setting and have liquid refreshments served by a glamorous dolly-bird while their other halves spend their money undisturbed. So he is happy with the dolly and she is happy with all the shopping. This system beats the male following your every step and saying things like: ‘You don’t need that!’ She: ‘Of course, I need it. Otherwise I would not be shopping for it!!’, sure! The right expression would be, perhaps, guzzling drinking their way through the entire range of the beers available.

We – that is – himself and I were shopping in the men’s section of this large store and himself wants to get his stuff without my expertise, so I am sitting there on a seat looking what the other people are doing, when this man – the size of, let’s say: he would be a giant among the pygmies, with a very large frau come near to where I am right besides the full-length mirror.

He is trying on a vast selection of winter overcoats by the large mirror, turning this way, turning that way, looking very pleased with himself while the shop assistant and the frau look on with approval. They talk about the different styles and what would be the best for him to buy.

I say nothing at this stage but smile benevolently at their direction, as tis not my man and none of my biz what he buys or not buys.

Then he tries on this very dark, large and long overcoat with a kind of military style to it. Oh, he is ever so pleased with what he sees of his reflection in the mirror; doing positively ‘napoleonic’ gestures and looking so imperial.

He puts his arm inside the buttons at the front and does his kaiser-like pose stretching to his full height and the heels nearly clicking when, at this point, I say to him:

“Kaiser Wilhelm!”

He cracks up with a hearty laughter falling over nearly and sees it for himself, too. After a minute or two he begins to tell his frau and the sales assistant what I had said for they did not hear it.

The assistant is not that happy, I must say. His commission on that particular coat must have been substantial if he had managed to sell it, of course.

To this day I do not know for sure if the man bought this Kaiser Wilhelm-coat or not because himself came laden that very moment with his shopping and we moved off the spot.

So, anybody living in Munich, if you see a man walking around in an overcoat looking like the Kaiser Wilhelm, let me know. Please. It could be HIM.

Tis for now. Riihele xx.


It is always risky to say anything to anybody one does not know and I took a quickly calculated risk – hmm, about 2 secs – in saying to him what I did. Thank God, his sense of humour was brilliant and he did not get mad at me!

Incidents & Such Like: Love


This GOLDEN OLDIE incident took place in Ireland in my home. I worked for ten years with foreign students who came to Ireland to learn and to improve their practical knowledge of the English language which they needed so that they would be able to study further in their chosen field in the university in their countries. I met the most amazing people through it with many of whom I am still in touch.

One time I had these three handsome hunks from Barcelona and one of them, Aleix, had to begin with huge difficulties to get across even the most simple thing he wanted to say. I got to know a lot of Catalan with him, because nearly everything had to be checked in the Catalan-English dictionary, specially, to start with. However, by the time he left his language skills were phenomenal; cracking jokes and so on.

By the way, Catalan is a mixture of French, Italian and Spanish, a lovely sounding language, indeed. Sorry to say but my knowledge of the said language is non-existant at present.

This is what happened:

A single girlfriend of mine and myself were sitting in the living room each on our own sofas and doing the usual ‘Girl Talk’ – no gents, please, when in walked Jose and Aleix, one plunking himself down beside me and Aleix sitting beside E.

E. is so used to all these nationalities in my life that she like a bestest of the best Irish people wanted to do some polite small talk with them as usual.

Here is the conversation between the two: Aleix and E.

E. “How long have you been in Ireland?”
A. “Yo-uu loo-vee —mee–“

E. trying again, slower, “How long have you been in Ireland?”
A. “Yo-uu loo-vee–mee–!” (in a rather surprised voice)

E. yet slower and with a perfect Irish intonation,

“How long have you been in Ireland?”

A. “Yo-uu–loo-vee–mee??” in a totally confused voice by now

E. by now so frustrated and embarrased that she says flicking the hair back:

“Am going home!”

Jose and I had rather enjoyed the comedy holding our aching stomachs and nearly falling off the sofa.

And off she goes. I see her off the door as is the custom of the hospitality in Ireland not knowing what to say and holding myself as serious as I possibly could.

When I return back to the sitting room, says Aleix, after Jose had translated the conversation to him,

“I think I put my foot in it.”

I nodding said,

” Yes, I think so, too.
But don’t worry E. has a brilliant sense of humour
and she will be grand.”

After this small talk E. avoided like a plague to ask any foreigner she met in my house as to how long they had been in Ireland. That question was never raised up ever again.

Tis for now. Riihele xx.

I worked as a support person: mama, nurse, shrink, teacher, cook, caterer, friend, et cetera 24/7 for them. A most rewarding, though demanding job.

The photo is taken by me.