Thursday, February 23, 2006

February vacation

Not much blogging the last couple of days. I've been busy fixing my damn Ford. It's strange that these things happen everytime I plan other things...

This week it's February vacation in southern Sweden. When I was much younger it was called Sports vacation. I don't know why they changed the name but this week the name Sports vacation would be quite more accurate with the Olympics and all.

When I was a kid, way back in time, this week was filled with activities. The municipalities, together with the schools, arranged a lot of activities for the kids. There were drug free discos, ski travels, indoor football tournaments, handball tournaments, dance classes, swimming and much more for any kid to come and try out. The main thing is that all these activities were arranged by the municipality. And now?

I checked the list of activities last Saturday. For LazyWorm and CartoonBoy there were absolutely no activities due to restrictions in age. For RazorTongue there was a spa for girls, with nail polishing and stuff and a water disco. I got a bit pissed by that. My daughter and all other girls her age, are learning to be worried about their looks already at the age of twelve. There were almost no sports activities what so ever arranged by the municipality.

Anyway, I had planned a couple of small trips to relatives, museums and the big amusement park in Gothenburg this week. But first of all, I was going to visit my younger sister and her friends to discuss their homepage. On my way there, the car broke down... The steering wheel jerked heavily to the right and there was this horrible grinding sound, just like when the brake pads are down to the metal.

I didn't know it then, but I was really lucky things didn't go worse. I really thought it was the brake pads that had given up on me. I called my sister and told her I was going to be about two hours late. She in turn told me that I could borrow her Volvo that my brother just had repaired and was going to be put out for sale. Said and done. I drove, very slowly, back to my mother's house, parked the Ford and drove off with my sister's old Volvo.

The next day, Monday, I bought new brake pads and set out to fix the damn Ford. As I had lifted the car, I realized that I could move the right front wheel in just any direction. That's NOT a good sign. I removed the wheel and discovered that the brakes were just fine. The wheel bearings were not. In fact, there were no wheel bearings left. It was all just a lot of grease and metal parts. Had I been driving at normal speeds as it happened, I probably wouldn't sit here writing this.

Of course I had to order the damn things. A repair that should have taken about an hour took three days. When things like these happen I'm glad I've got a big family and that we're all friends. Anyway, LazyWorm and RazorTongue got a trip to Gothenburg together with my other sister, her kids and our mother.


I'm in the process of selling one of my cars, the Nissan, at a Swedish auction site. I'm demanding at least $20 for it. Let's hope it gets sold within a week. I can't bare the sight of it any longer.


Oh, and Sweden's Lady Curling team took our fifth Olympic Gold Medal! What a thriller!


Virginia Gal said...

Congrad's on your test - though I had no doubt you would do well!

I think your daughters should be proud to have such a great dad! I love that you are outraged about the makeup and beauty classes offered to the girls. That is so wrong, was the same offered to the boys?

JoeinVegas said...

Our friend in Linkoping (sorry, no umlauts on my keyboard) calls it the skiing vacation. But that was before he had kids.
RazorTongue? Sounds like most girls that age around here too. Guess they grow up at the same rate all over.

Kitty said...

I caught the curling game on TV and cheered for Sweden for no other reason than the fact that you are from Sweden. I had never heard of Curling before and it looked strange. Can you give a short explination about this sport?


PissedOffPencil said...

Virgina Gal: Thank you! And no, boys don't seem to need a manicure. They should se my nails after fixing the car... ;)

JoeinVegas: I too think that most girls that age have a certain... ability to cut adults up with their sharp tongues but RazorTongue is extraordinary. I'm so proud of her. :)

Kitty: I'm sorry but I don't know the rules. :)
I found this website though:

Susan D. said...

So sorry to hear about the car problems... it's amazing how they always pick the worst time to go, as if they had a mind of their own! Hope the Nissan goes quickly too.

Congrats on Sweden's victories in hockey & curling... easy for me to say as almost nobody in the US cares about these sports (haha!) But let me tell you, we could absolutely kick some Swedish @ss if they made stock car racing or rodeo into Olympic events!

PissedOffPencil said...

Susan D.: Yes, it's amazing how those bloody mechanic things have a habit of letting one down at the most inconvinient of times, isn't it? :)

Nobody cares about hockey?!? I'm shocked! How can a country with such a good hockey team not care about that sport?

Don't be too cocky Susan... Sweden is one of the worlds finest motor-racing countries in the world. We have some of the finest and fastest drag racing teams in the world. We also find ourselves battling at the top in tractor pulling very often. And don't get me started about our Rally championships... ;)

Who wants to ride a cow anyway? ;o)

Molly Malone said...

It's a bull. And it's furious because his testicles are being messed with by ambulatory primates 1/4 his size. ... that said, though, I don't know why anyone would want to ride one, either. But I also don't know why anyone would want to go luging headfirst a la Skeleton. Luging, I understand, Skeleton, not so much. Congrats on the Curling gold!

Re: your car. Is it a tie-rod issue, too? I remeber when I was in high school, one of my classmates had something similar happen returning from lunch. His tie rod had snapped. In any event, that's scary as hell. I'm glad you made it out alive!

Re: The end of "Sports Vacation" - Sorry the lazy monster has taken over your country. I really worry about the recent trend (in the US anyway) about treating pre-teen girls to spa days. I was 26 before I had my first manicure. When I was 12, I was just happy I knew how to shave my legs! I still have never had my eyebrows waxed. (I refuse!) It's definitely sick to push our girls into little cosmetic boxes at younger and younger ages.

PissedOffPencil said...

*laughing* Molly, I know it's a bull. I was just pulling your (shaved) leg... ;)

No, it wasn't a tie-rod issue in my case, just the wheel bearings. Anyway, it was really scary.

Sweden won 14 Olympic medals! That's the best we've ever done, as far as I know. This result made by a country with nine million inhabitants...

There's nothing wrong about wanting to look ones best but to start at pre-teen, and in an organized form, just seems wrong to me. Or maybe I just don't want my little girl to grow up?