Thursday, 7 April 2022

Sorry Sonia, but no........

 I'm not sure how I ever ended up on the same page as Sonia Poulton one time because on almost every subject we hold polemically opposite views.  I have no problem with people being whatever gender they choose to be, it matters not to me, I actually have a soft spot for those with the courage to be themselves, even if it does mean stepping outside of our traditional codes and conventions.  Most people, myself included, though less so these days, present ourselves as the world expects us to.

To be honest I have not paid an awful lot of attention to what Sonia has to say about the trans community, the men especially, because I look on it as, and I hate to use this phrase; 'fearmongering'.  For myself, I cannot see how someone's sexual identity is in any way threatening to anybody.  I have never been scared to use a public bathroom and I would question is there even one recorded instance of a trans man accosting or assaulting a woman in public bathroom or store changing rooms?  I remember once bumping into a divinely glamorous Queen in a powder room, well it was more of a boudoir, did I feel threatened, not at all, I remember having a delightful conversation about lipstick.  I simply cannot understand why anyone would want to attack the way others choose to live their lives, what does it matter to them? it makes no sense to me.

Next the craziness surrounding Covid-19, the anti-masking, anti-vaxxing and lunatic conspiracy theories she is promoting regarding protecting ourselves.  She and others have forced our, albeit incompetent, government to drop all the defences we had against this virulent disease.  No masks, no distancing, no testing, no numbers, though we do know 4.5 million were infected last week and 368 people died.  That is, we are right back to the days when Covid was at it's peak - and no-one cares.  In 1918, the 'Spanish Flu' came in waves, then it mutated and killed 50 million worldwide.  Naturally, that is a risk Boris Johnson and his mates are willing to take, in their pursuit of even more riches, they have literally made billions out of the pandemic thus far.  Those on the front line, the NHS, the delivery drivers, the food industry, all the people who kept this country ticking over, abandoned as the virus rages.  We are now in the place Sonia campaigned for.  No more protections even if the virus does mutate into something more deadly.  We haven't gained more freedom, we have lost it.  Because those using common sense will continue to practice social distancing, masking, handwashing, and if advised, more boosters.  Those still taking advice from Boris et al need their heads testing.

It angers me that Sonia is using her considerable talents to take on causes that are not only wrong but dangerous.  I am no supporter of this government, but the half arsed effort they put into the pandemic in the beginning was something at least.  Compared to the rest of the world however, the abysmal UK covid stats were among the worst.  The big question I would ask Sonia?  How can she look at the dischevilled oaf that is Boris Johnson and the demonic coke heads that surround him and imagine him putting together some kind of Dr. Evil plot?  The most inept government we have ever had taking over our minds, lives, etc, now that is laugh out loud funny.  

Thus far, I can look on Sonia's views with a raised eyebrow and a few ffs, but but her latest comment on the invasion of Ukraine offends me on every level.  How on earth has she bought into Russian Propaganda?  We live in a time where news is instant and brought to us by people who are 'on the spot', both the press and the public.  We have factual news from every angle.  It is a cruel and wicked lie to suggest that footage of mass graves and bodies in the streets are staged.  That kind of cruel propaganda is expected from Putin but not from a British journalist.  Since the Russian invasion, I have followed a number of individuals, Ukrainians, who are on the front line, literally posting from a war zone.  How they are surviving on little rations and the devastating sights they are seeing.  The horror is very real to them as Sonia would know if she did a little more research.  I am also following Russians, escaping Russia, or reporting how the sanctions and the actions of the West are affecting real Russian citizens.  

Putin is a monster.  He is sending mobile crematoriums along with his tanks, to cover up the evidence of his war crimes.  No-one thought Hitler could be topped, but Putin has found a way.  This is a war where we hear the voices of the real people who are on the ground, Ukrainian and Russian.  There is no excuse for any connected Western journalist to promote clearly fake Russian propaganda.  For me it brings to mind Lord Haw Haw's 'Germany Calling', and that's a road no sane journalist wants to go down.

Sonia asks if any other President has spoken at the Grammys in wartime, a silly question in my opinion.  The world has moved on considerably since the Grammys began (1959), it is possible now to transmit information globally, in real time,   As a child of the 60's, WWII was still fresh in people's memories, especially the horrors of Hitler's death camps and crematoriums.  The top phrase at that time was 'this must never happen again'.  

We now have the technology and the will to record and report war crimes to a wide audience.  Yes, it was rare, in fact a first, for a President to speak at the Grammys, but President Zelensky was invited because he is a hero.  He is fighting for freedom and democracy, beliefs I would have thought were in line with Sonia's.  It is right that the world should be applauding him and helping him.  There is no moral dilemma here.  History is littered with heroes and villains,  and the heroes usually take unexpected and unconventional ways to win their battles.  This is a war of propaganda as much as it is a bloody battlefield and Putin is pretty good at brainwashing, he has had over two decades to practice.  Giving Zelensky a spot on the Grammys is one of the best weapons the West could have given him, without kicking off WWIII.  He spoke directly to the pop stars and musicians who are worshipped by young Russian people.  How can Putin top that?

 I have to admit that I am struggling at the moment to understand why Sonia and a handful of people on the Left that I used to admire, are taking the 'fake news' path on Russia's invasion of Ukraine, is there something I am not seeing?  


  1. History repeats itself because the same mutants create it. It's just a new generation of them, be it sons, grandsons etc. The families that break bread together always break bread together. Is Putin a monster for what he's doing ?

    When the US thought Russia had a few missiles on the Bay Of Pigs, Cuba pointing at them, we were told by their media that 'the world held it's breath' as the two leaders negotiated. The US wanted power over the globe and over Russia. So we were taught to hate Russia. Now NATO want the Ukraine to be their Bay Of Pigs and install all manner of threats and point them at Russia. Their stand up comedian leader is an asset. In the job a couple of years and already a dollar multi millionaire.

    Transgenderism and other new beliefs. Far be it from me to criticize the latest fashion- it would make me some kind of bigot or guilty of the latest 'ism'.
    The mainstream media and social networks have made it ever so enlightening to be open and evolved about sexuality. So, like makeup, clothes, fashion- it's made trendy and the herd follow. But what of the 'educating' of the under- 12s about sexuality, sex and pleasure ? It's taken the place of other wild ideas like laughter and running around laughing. It normalizes sexuality which sexualises children which leads to the collective 'evolving' trendies to call for the lowering ( again) of consent. The people in high places would love to manipulate the strings for that one as your blog knows.

    Already we have the new 'influencers' and people with unearned letters after their name saying 'gender is a social construct'. Really ? So what are chromosomes- a conspiracy theory ?

    If you don't endorse black lives matter, transgenderisms, or whatever else the social justice 'worriers' obsess over, it means you're 'phobic'. If you parade your Britishness or 'heterosexualness' you're 'phobic'. No grey areas any longer. If you don't love them you hate them. The thought police have decreed it. Once you know what you can and can't say you'll know what you can and can't think. Big Brother isn't watching you any more he's working you with his hand up your back.

    NATO have crawled over the planet slowly for 30 years and it's choking .Putin never minded Ukraine leaving the union, he minded it winking to Uncle Sam and offering him a platform to aim more hostility and hatred.

    Covid face nappies and distancing ? Fauci ? Schwabb ? If you had 4 pages free I'd spell out what you're missing.


    1. Hello and welcome Thingio - I finally have someone to talk to, or maybe argue with :)

      I recently watched a documentary about the Cuban Missile Crisis, to be honest I never really understood what went on, I was a toddler at the time. But the documentary brought an 'Aha, now I get it' moment for me. I understand now why Russia wanted nuclear weapons on the island of Cuba within striking distance of the USA. The part I was previously missing was the fact that the America had nuclear weapons in Turkey within striking distance of the Soviet Union. Catastrophe was avoided by JFK corresponding directly with Khrushchev with Kennedy agreeing to remove the US nukes and the Soviet Union doing the same. Ultimately, it was down to the two men going head to head. Kennedy was, rightly in my opinion, seen as quite the hero of the moment, for staying calm and clear in his demands.

      Cometh the hour, cometh the man, Zelensky may have been a stand up comedian in his former life, and stand up comedy takes genius imo, but he has rallied the people of Ukraine and most nations of the world behind him, that's quite an achievement. I have been watching multiple historic sieges during lockdown and it seems to me that invasions only work if the indigenous people join forces with the invaders. That won't happen in Ukraine, their leader will never surrender, ergo, nor will they.


  2. I think transgenderism is here to stay, not a passing fashion. We now have freedom to be whatever we want to be, and some people will make the most of that. I have no problem with people dressing, being, whatever they want, I don't see why it is an issue for them or anyone else. I have no interest in other people's sexuality, unless they are after me bod ha ha, and it has no place in light conversation. Have been watching back to back Jane Austen, so am very twee at the moment.

    I am afraid I groan at your paragraph on sexualising children etc. I am of the very firm belief that adults who see children as sexual are very, very, rare and I don't understand why this creepy mentality has become almost mainstream. As a small child, I spent a great deal of time in the company of a single middle aged man who happened to be an amateur photographer. I was his muse, he was my friend. He took hundreds, maybe thousands of pictures of me, and many years later he presented me with albums of my childhood, an amazing gift. He treated me with nothing but kindness, always happy to listen my constant chatter (others were not!) and my parents never questioned my odd relationship. That was the early 60's. I fear now he would be in prison and I would have been traumatised into saying things that were not true, my wonderful memories and gift destroyed. There was never anything sexual, yuck at the idea, in retrospect, I think my friend was probably gay, his pleasure was his art, his photography, he captured images not only of me, but of our wonderful rural setting - Virginia Water.

    But I have wondered and I haven't even had a drink. That certain ideas may label you a 'phobic' is not such a big problem in the whole scheme of things. Actually, I have often applied the label to myself in regard to egg shells (hate them) and rats. I think if you hold strong views on controversial issues, then you must accept that others might not agree with you. Actually, it's a tad big headed to think you are right and everyone else is wrong, do you have any leeway for doubt I wonder?

    Even at my grand old age I question everything. Though strangely I never did when I was younger, which I now see as wrong, very wrong. Actually, it was higher education that taught me how very little I actually knew, and it was a bit of a shock as my arrogance knew no bounds. Ahh, the confidence of youth eh. But age brings a different confidence - I now know why both my father and my mother would say 'ok, you go ahead' with a knowing look that said 'yeh, you're going to fall flat on your face'. I too have acquired that look when talking to youngsters, because we oldies know from experience how things turn out, but we have to let the young 'uns find out for themselves.


    1. I happen to agree with Black Lives Matter, especially in the USA where a hugely disproportionate number of young black men and women are shot and killed by the police, heaven knows what the proportion of the black/white prison population. Sadly racism is very far from over, it should never be accepted as normal.

      A word in support of Influencers, lol. I have to say I find this an exhilarating age in which to live. For the first time in history ordinary men and women have the same opportunity to become rich. famous and influential as the already rich and influential. I think it is a wonderful thing, working class people finally have a level playing field and they don't need a string of qualifications after their names. I am a big fan of Youtube and follow a huge spectrum of vloggers who visit places and taste foods I can only dream about. Not to mention the beauticians, the hairdressers and the storytellers. What brave new world is this? I come from a world where you had to share a party line with your neighbour!

      I actually have a great deal of faith and confidence in our youth Thingio (nice name), they have far more education and information available to them, literally at their fingertips. No dragging books home from the library as we did. And I think Jeremy Corbyn has a wonderful legacy, his hopes and dreams remain in the hearts of all those young people he influenced. Sadly, I do not see that change in my lifetime, but it will come, a leader will rise up....

      In the meanwhile, our lives are in the hands of rich, upper class, white men, white anglo-saxon Christians who are quadrupling their wealth. The masses are saturated in fast food and designer labels, capitalism at it's worst. I half wish I had the energy to stir up protest, but ageing brings that perpetual question 'what's the f**king point'.

      I happen to think NATO is a good thing. As a history nerd, I spend much of my time studying ancient history and battles, via videos I must confess, but I may as well be entertained as informed. We can never predict when and where tyrants and despots may emerge who want to take over the world, but we do know it happens, we have 2000 years of history to look to for examples. Has NATO kept world peace? I think it has. Would Hitler have invaded Poland and had a crack at world domination if there had been a NATO? Similarly, NATO keeps Putin in check. He knows most of the world are against him, perhaps for now that keeps him in check.

      Thank you Thingio for taking the time to pen your thoughts. I don't think we agree on much, if anything, but it certainly gives me much food for thought. Kindest wishes.

  3. Thank you :) x

    I think you have to accept that for longer than either of us have been here, propaganda has been a useful and subtle tool of manipulation. Imagine owning the tool outright. Imagining owning and dictating what the 'news' would be, what would be left out and how it would be presented. No need to. One by one, all media outlets have been bought up by a small amount of oligarchs .'Oligarch' is a relatively knew word to many thanks to the anti Russian propaganda. I think we're supposed to believe the likes of Bill gates, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk. A more important word is Oligopoloy. A sort of game of Monopoly for the filthy rich.

    The Covid story was countless small businesses die and many many homes lost and many jobs lost too. Long before Covid we saw shops closing as monsters took over such as ASDA and TESCO et al. The fourth industrial revolution on the march. But who made record profits in the last 3 years ? Amazon ( US company) making Bezos Numero Uno of the filthy rich. The US economy was afloat as everyone ordered their tack from him. It's the shape of things to come.

    The propaganda on the TV commercials is showing ( directing) us. Don't buy from shops, buy off each other ; don't go to the shop- order a pint of milk on line. Don't go out stay in looking at a screen (alone). Have a drinking game with anyone you like. Every advert that has a screen of sorts featured, - phones, computers, tablets etc- take a drink. You'll be unconscious after half an hour. It's all drip drip dripping into our heads .And heaven forbid we stray from the herd and risk ridicule.

    In the meantime the tumbleweed rolls along the streets that used to full of people talking, laughing and children running everywhere and nowhere for fun.

    'Phobic' is a new re-invented word. Someone asks you if you are pro or anti trans or gay or LBGT( and more letters to come I'm sure) if you don't say pro you're 'phobic'. Tell them phobia is about fear or irrational fear and they glaze over panic stricken and wishing they could google it. What's wrong with being neutral ? Or in olde worlde parlance, not giving one. The world's going down like the Titanic, I don't care what you do with your meat and two veg right now.

    The sexualising of children is not a conspiracy theory. Allowing TV's or CDs or TS's or whatever they are this week, into primary schools to 'educate' isn't right. Maybe once the kids reach puberty it's important. If they are unaware they' only being kids. Why coax the curiosity- curious kids are too easily led. And why get so many 'celebs' who happen to be gay to be 'spokespeople' ? Being gay or having a difficult past doesn't make you a developmental psychologist.

    Too many have announced that they have decided that their impending son / daughter will be raised in the opposite of conventional way; so ''our son will wear pink and dresses and play with dolls''. Rather than have society force a stereotype on them they can be raised as free spirits and have their parents force one on to them instead. Headcases.

    Limited space has called time here. But I'd suggest a look at Pax Americana as a subject.

    Covid is still too emotive for those who think the media and politicians are honest and neve lie or profit from that which holds the rest of us to knife point. Ukraine's president is riding high on the media -created wave of anti- Russian propaganda. That won't end well.

    Footnote :

    I too dwell in the world you refer too in better days.I see it in soft focus and can smell the Summer.But as an author whose name escapes me right now once said :

    '' The past is a foreign country ; they do things differently there''.


    1. Just what I needed this dull afternoon, thank you Thingio.

      We are never going to agree on Covid, lol, I am firmly on the side of science and I think Fauci is adorable.

      Propaganda is among the least of my worries. I am a wizened, educated lady, with an enquiring mind and I always apply logic, Mr. Spock style. I don't fear Bill Gates or Jeff Bezos, we are evolving, moving towards a more advanced society. The Masters of the Universe are now based in Silicone Valley, but happily, most are philanthropists, their quest is to provide the world, the masses, with information and communication. This is the polar opposite to the rule of tyrants, dictators and Drs. Evil. They have, thus far, stood up to governments who have tried to get a slice of the action. Imagine a government with the power of Twitter or Facebook? I actually think these are exciting times, the dominant ideology of the former patriarchal society is collapsing.

      I am actually a child of the 60's, I remember having Harold Wilson as Prime Minister (methinks he would have hated Starmer). It was a time when England swung like a pendum doo (whatever that is, ha ha) and London was the hottest capital of the world. We had a government who invested in the arts and science, a government sworn to protect the populace from cradle to grave. I am not sure if immigrants were welcomed, but they rushed to our shores, seeing the UK as a land of great opportunity, a place to fulfil their ambitions. In Virginia Water, my bubble was filled with children from all over the world. Our parents worked in the huge hospital across the road. Doctors, nurses, kitchen staff and porters, there were no class or race divides. How lucky was I? My best friends, apart from Tom the photographer, were 3 Indian girls and a German boy called Heina. Dear Heina put up with my speaking on his behalf and generally manhandling him, because I loved the shock of introducing him as 'German'. I would always give it a minute for the word to kick in. the war was a recent memory, then throw my arm around his neck to show them, I loved him anyway. It felt defiant, and I liked that.

      But where we, ahh, immigrants. I honestly do not understand people's hostility towards them, the mentality that they are somehow taking something away from them. They aren't of course, they are merely becoming part of a population that is growing and moving on. These days it is rare for children to stay in the vicinity of their parents and grandparents, and quite right too. They are more educated and more sophisticated, they want more from life than living in the same street with the same neighbours until they die. It is an absurd idea, along the same lines as the Amish.

      The reality is, as our children move on, we need to bring new people in to carry on all the services that keep a community running smoothly. We were lucky to have so many European medical staff to keep our hospitals going, but who knows what will happen now. As a former Access teacher I know how much the medical and caring professions rely on foreign students.

      Apologies Thingio, I weep still for Jeremy Corbyn's loss, I will never get over it. But let me move to your next subject, something I think we sort of agree on. I'm not a God worshipper as you probably know. but I do think, the good Lord, if there is one, made two genders. And science agrees with him on this one. I am tickled pink that God made me a girl. I've loved every minute of it. I have never once seen it as a disadvantage, in fact, I have, on occasion, used my femininity to advance myself. All is fair in love and war. Men with large biceps and hairy chests have had the same effect on me.

  4. Continues.....

    I can't begin to tell you the joys of being a girl, well I could but it would take all day. We are, for example, free to pile on the makeup so we look 30 years younger, from a distance and without glasses. We can disguise our ageing selves in whatever attire we choose, especially when older, when being eccentric is charming.

    As a little girl, my greatest wish was to be able to fight a boy. They were the enemy and it annoyed me intensely that they were bigger and stronger. But a good left hook wasn't the answer. Happily I discovered they were mostly dumb and very easy to manipulate, unfortunately never the ones I liked. Doh!

    While I am on a roll, I have to admit the greatest times I have had with men has been in the arguing. There were occasions when police and ambulance were called over particular tempestuous games of Trivial Pursuit. I remember my ex being dragged away in handcuffs screaming for all to hear that a bird has 3 toes! Does it though?

    I don't have as pessimistic view of the future as you do. Eventually I hope, society will realise that we can enjoy all our time that has been freed up by science and technology. The care industry, NHS makes up around 50% of the workforce. Retail, as you pointed out, is declining almost as fast as our daily newspapers. All online as you say.

    We must create new jobs, we must raise the level of our education, we must invest in science, technology and the arts. Many of us are aware of how unhealthy it is to spend hours in front of a computer screen. Opportunities exist to turn leisure pursuits into an industry. In fact there are many industries that can improve the lives of the masses. They don't exist yet, but they should.

    But back to gender issues. I must admit I am often bemused by the idea of offering very small children the option of what sex they want to be. That's a pretty f**cked up question to put to an adult. I guess, for 2000 years +, there has been two genders. Boys, girls. To update, pink ribbons or blue ribbons. Most were happy where they landed, or switched sides when they had the life experience to make that judgment call. I think it is a shit thing to do to a toddler, spare them the identity crises until they are at least in their teens.

  5. Hi Rosalinda.

    It was some while ago

    The world seems to have gone mad Rosalinda. All I can say is that we must try to distinguish between those who rule totalitarian states, and all innocent people who’re ruled by them.

    My respect and admiration for the Russian people persists, while my disgust for the few sceptics in Kremlin grow stronger, as I know they had the power to prevent Putin from invading Ukraine, but instead they allowed the lunatic to follow his preposterous dream about a new utopic Russian empire.

    I have to say that Putin has distanced himself from all human values. He is a tyrant and has always been one. He lives in his own imagination of the world and he sincerely believes in his own fantasies about the enslaved Russians in Ukraine and about the “fascists” in the west threatening the very existence of Russia.

    Take Care

    1. Halla Bjorn (eek can't do symbols, but hope that is right :) )

      The world has changed considerably this past couple of years, scarily so. In this country Tories celebrate opening food banks! I'm a child of the 60's and don't remember times being so hard. Fuel bills have rocketed, people are afraid, it's eat or heat. Was shocked today to see my usual butter (Lurpak) is a fiver! A fiver, good grief.

      I have to confess I have not paid too much attention to the war. I jokingly, refer to myself as an Empath, because I cannot cope with the horror and the tragedy of so many lives being lost for the ego of one man, one monster. Smart arsed son is currently rolling on the floor laughing at the idea of me being an empath, tells people he was raised by wolves.

      I find that as I get older Bjorn, I am less passionate about causes that are beyond my control. And such is life, that is pretty much everything. It's sounds like a bit of a cop out, but now I spend my days delighting in the wonders of the internet. So much to learn, so little time.

      Sadly, I have not travelled as much as I would have liked so I am a great fan of the travel and food bloggers who go deep into the heart of places I would love to see, I feel I am enjoying the experience vicariously.

      At the start of the pandemic I was intensely interested in Russia, its' peoples, traditions and culture. No big old books needed, just lots of videos - 'Bald and Bankrupt' was one of my favourites, an English guy who speaks fluent Russian who travels all over the old Soviet Union and gives a real insight into the country's history and the life of ordinary Russian people now.

      As you say, it is not the Russian people who are the problem. They have been subjugated for over a century, the wealth of the country not being spent on improving their lives with housing, infrastructure, hospitals, food supplies, but on a war machine, and into the hands of Russian oligarchs. I have taken some hope from the Russian soldiers in the Ukraine who have rebelled, but of course, the only ones capable of disabling Putin are those closest to him. And it could be, with rumours of his 'blood cancer' and possible demise that his last moves could be maniacal.

      Using logic and common sense, it is not possible to conquer a country that does not want to be conquered. We only have to look at history to see how sieges in those situations went. Look at the Vikings (still Viking obsessed) first attempts to invade England, the Anglo Saxons did not want to be ruled by them, and fought back for decades.

      Fast forward 1000 years, or thereabouts, and the Russians are now imbedded in what will be a long, high casualty war. This time of course, the destruction is much worse and and more are dying. On the Ukrainian side, technology enables all the fighters to contact each other and the outside world. And they have sworn that they will never surrender. They have either lived under Russian rule before or they have first hand knowledge of people who do. The freedom they have in a democratic Ukraine is worth fighting and dying for. They don't want Putin puppets and who can blame them.


    2. The 'Bald and Bankrupt' on YouTube, speaks to a lot of Older Russians (especially Babooshkas), Belarusians (sp) etc who were part of the old Soviet Union, and bizarrely they miss the Soviet Union! The younger generation of course want freedom, but they dare not speak on camera. B&B, to his credit, does not get too involved in the politics, he travels, mostly on his own, on buses and trains, etc, staying in cheap hotels and tasting the local food. He has a special interest in old Soviet artefacts, murals and statues.

      I should imagine for all Ukrainians and young Russians, they have a choice of living with the huge divide similar to North and South Korea. That is, all those coming under Russian rule, will have their freedoms severally curtailed. It was horrifying watching ordinary Russian citizens protesting with placards being dragged away by Russian police. That is what Ukrainians face and the strongest reason to keep fighting. You can't kill that spirit, not even with weapons of mass destruction.

      It's funny Bjorn but as I have got older I am starting to resort to prayer. I have long been agnostic, but sometimes a prayer or the offer of a prayer, is all you have to give and when it is sincere, I'm sure it helps. I once had a very dear old Irish friend who would make the sign of the cross, say 'Jesus, Mary and Joseph' and 'I'll pray for you' after most things I said, and it definitely worked, my then greatest wishes came about. I was going to say I jest, but tis true. Shocking her made me giggle, it made her giggle too.

      I'm not sure I would ever go back to full blown Catholicism, lol, I think they spend about double the time of the protestants on their knees, my joints couldn't take. I am very into places of historic interest these days, so might venture into a church. I might even go to confession, but I fear my mischief level is so raised, God knows what I could come out with, I've got about 30 years worth! My mother, God rest her dear soul, was a mischievous woman all her life, especially as she got older and I feel certain her spirit jumped into me when she passed. But that is an eccentric subject for another day.

      I had forgotten how much I enjoyed writing Bjorn, so bless you my friend, for the inspiration. I am not entirely sure it all makes sense, my wandering off onto other tangents appears worse than ever, happily that has never seemed to bother my old readers, so I won't fret.

      I wish you and yours well Bjorn and I hope that life in Sweden has returned to pre-pandemic. I am still wearing a mask and taking precautions, I have so many health problems these days, I fear Covid would polish me off. You must tell me what life is like in Sweden, have you been hit by the massive fuel rises?

      Over here, Barmy Boris is so mortified by the public's reaction to 'Partygate' that he is giving all the plebs quite a large cash payment! In my opinion, some made billions, out of the pandemic and the fuel rises, and guilt is driving this decision. It has never been known, cash from the government, not in my lifetime anyway. But hurrah say I, I will put it in my 'moments in history' diary (if I had one) and buy the Ben and Jerry's ice cream instead of the Co-op's own. For the time being anyway - I foresee all sorts of 'Walking Dead' situations for the future, the bit before we are all fighting each other with sticks and stones again.

      Take care my friend, god kvall :) (again apologies for the lack of symbol)

    3. The universal truth I think is that nothing good can come of it. We no longer live in a world where tyrants can slaughter millions, all those who will not capitulate to them. Ukraine doesn't stand alone, theoretically at least. Putin cannot round up millions and murder them as Hitler did. Would the world stand by if he attempted that? I like to think not. Death camps cannot be kept secret as they were in WWII. Hitler conquered with mass murder, he was able, through fear, to divide and rule. I think, if it came to it, the allies would unite, perhaps with land battles and the hope that Putin (crazy) will not feel so bitter that he presses buttons.

      I hate to say it, but I agree with those commentators that say Putin must be given a way out that will not totally humiliate him. But again, the man is nuts, what would he demand? And who among the Baltic states would want to give up their democracy and go back under Russian rule?

      These problems make my head hurt Bjorn, I'll use a common phrase in the UK just now, 'it's way above my pay grade', but for my own peace of mind I chant 'it's beyond my control'. I have over the past couple of years become somewhat of a hedonist. I feel I have done enough fretting and worrying for anyone's lifetime, I accept the wise words of 'Grasshopper'*, 'if I worry will it change the outcome?' Now I only do 'stuff' I enjoy, if there is a subject I enjoy, I will give myself wholeheartedly to researching it. Researching sounds a little pompous, it is mostly reading the (concise) history and watching videos, documentaries, dramas and watching the wonderful historians who explain it all so well.

      During the Russian phase of the Pandemic I started watching 'Bald and Bankrupt' a guy on Youtube who speaks fluent Russian and travels/back packs all around the Baltic. They give a wonderful insight into what life is actually like for Russians today. Sadly, it is pretty grim. It is obvious that the country's wealth has not been invested in any benefits for its' citizens. No infrastructure, housing, hospitals, food supplies. Some of the older people say it was better under the old Soviet Union. However, given how dangerous it is for Russians and those on Russian territory to speak freely, there is probably more opposition to Putin than his propaganda would suggest.

      It has been a delight to write again Bjorn, thank you my friend for inspiring me, I had forgotten how much I enjoy it. I hope you and your family are well Bjorn, how is life in Sweden now. We are in dire straits here, fuel and energy bills have gone through the roof, doubled and tripled, food banks are common, something that didn't even exist when I was young. I did make some unflattering remarks about Barmy Boris, but I lost an entire post, I might return if they didn't make it.

      Take care Bjorn, and my kindest wishes to you.

    4. Hi Rosalinda,
      And thanks for feed back

      The white summer nights are back here in northern Sweden Rosalinda and I’ve an old habit of walking along a solitary peninsula that gets narrower with each step I take. After a few miles it becomes only a few meters wide before reaching the headland, where I can hear and feel the entire Bothnian Sea, which makes me forget about what’s going on in Putin’s dirty war, at least for a while. I cannot do without this lonely pilgrim walk and it makes me feel attached to nature and to life more than anything else

      I’ve actually watched the ”Bald and Bankrupt” many times before the war broke out and I appreciate this guy and his honesty so much, as he depicts different portraits of the countries he visits than MSM does.

      Here're just some facts about our economic situation Rosalinda. The real estate market is overheated. Property prices are now rising explosively. This is worrying because it could be a sign of uncontrolled inflation in a near future and thus an unstable economic situation. Still, we have survived both the pandemic and the ongoing war better than expected.

      The Swedish stock market is rising slowly, but the prices of food, building materials and especially of petrol have risen dramatically, but most people seem to be able to save money by consuming and spending less than before, which is a phenomenon, that is noticeable in northern Sweden, where I currently live, where a lot of people have the knowledge to do things themselves instead of buying all services for maintenance of their houses or reparations of their cars etc . I’ve noticed how dependent on neighbours and friends we have become lately helping one another more than we did two or three years ago.

      As for the application for NATO membership due to the uncertainty about what Putin is prepared to do to recreate Russia's "greatness", It is on every Swede’s mind now. We need to join soonest possible as Putin’s expansion strategies to “liberate” all Slavic people in eastern Europe has become so evident, especially in his latest speech about Tsar Peter the Great. Look it up Rosalinda, if you have time. You will be shocked.

      No democratic leader seems to be capable of dealing with Putin. So sad but unfortunately so true.

      Take Care Rosalinda