Sunday, December 28, 2008

I got a big chunk of my LVC essay done whilst Mike and 2 friends were playing MarioKart the other day. How odd - you'd think it'd be distracting, but it turned out better than sitting by my desk at home.

Did you know that the glottal stop only established itself in British English in the early 20th Century? Mad how it's already all but wiped out the wonderful t-to-r in Yorkshire... Random fact of the day, brought to you by a very sleepy Jahooliia.

Christmas has been great, so far. Only had half of it - on Monday we fly to (hopefully!) snowy Sweden for part 2. People have been so generous, not sure they've heard of that little thing they call the 'credit crunch' though... Maybe it's all a myth, like the moon landing or evolution.

And - not to worry - that last bit was a reference to Friends. The philosophical bible of my generation...


Monday, December 15, 2008

Wallander was shown on BBC the other night. I was very excited! Until I sat down to watch it and realised it's an English version with Kenenth Branagh as Wallander. Sigh. I turned it off and watched Top Gear instead. Mind you it might have been worth watching just for the comedy factor?

Friday, December 05, 2008

On Breakfast on BBC1 this morning they were talking to some singer or other. Whilst listing his accomplishments, they thought it appropriate to mention that 'and, he's married to one of the most beautiful women in the world'.

They didn't mention her name. Had they been interviewing a woman, I'm sure it would have been 'and she's dating the very distinguished and successful Mr X'.

Small gripe of the day! Over and out.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Pathetic attempt at snow this morning. There's a bit of white sludge on the grass still. It looks cold. Mike wants snow though - does anyone know what Sweden at New Years will be like?

Finished my LVC essay last night, ended up really enjoying it. It needs some proof reading though. Will see if I can be bothered later!

Want to make some muffins, fruit bombs... mm..

The L I was looking for yesterday... I've come to the conclusion it's a palatalised alveolar lateral approximant. In case you were wondering!

Whilst I'm here... why can I not figure out the Swedish L? Or rather, how I realise it? It's been bugging me for days now.
More bank issues. Opened a new account just so I could get a proper bank card (as opposed to a 'cash card' which doesn't work anywhere. I also said I don't want a cheque book, thanks.

So what do they send me? That's right, a cheque book, and a cash card.

When I rang up they said I have to fill in an application form, and they'd send one to me. But oh - just *in case* it doesn't get to me, could I pick one up in the bank?

Erm. Time to change banks, probably...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I'm ill :( Think I'll go back to the sofa. Quite hard to focus on journals at the moment! They should do a flu-friendly version...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Booked our flights for New Years now :) Yay!!

Gonna listen to some shouting now. Jealous? You should be... :)


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

So town at lunchtime in the middle of half term is... fun. Post office, then bank - don't you envy the day I've had?

Struggling with a lab report at the moment. Not because it's particularly hard but because it's... I dunno. It's an assignment! Lol. Will keep you updated on my progress...

Got a text from mum saying Sterling air have gone bankrupt, so she hoped we haven't booked flights with them... We haven't, luckily!

Speaking of nothing, I've been thinking about the international banking world. So I know there's a recession at the moment but that's got nothing to do with it. Supposedly, the European Union makes movement within the area easier. Well, nothing's working on the financial front. I've had so many problems with banks, money transfers etc. since I got here, and I know a lot of my friends have as well. First of all there are no banks with branches in both Sweden & England but there's not a lot you can do about that. But they make it so difficult. Opening a bank account in the UK takes a lot of effort - one of my friends was charged for opening a standard account! By one of the largest banks as well. It's disgusting tbh, surely the cooperation between the countries in the EU should allow you to open a normal account and also allow banks & other debt collection agencies to chase you if you go back to your own country (which I realise is at present the reason they're so awkward about letting internationals open accounts). There are also big charges (mainly on the UK side actually) for money transfers and similar. There's just a culture of debt and charges - and it's kind of sickening. What also annoys me is that my Swedish card is classed as a credit card over here, when there's no crediting about it. Grr! Bored of it. I'm gonna keep all my money under my mattress from now on.

Monday, October 27, 2008

So it turns out I don't remember much about vowels...

Sunday, October 26, 2008

CSI Sunday again! Best night of the week. Well, TV-wise anyway.

Am waiting for some mince to thaw so I can make meatballs. Starting to get hungry though so might have to hurry it up a bit. Don't have any lingonberry jam so will have to have sticky pasta and ketchup! Yum yum.

Mike bought me some flashy headphones yesterday - yay! The speakers on my laptop are so rubbish, so I was fearing having to go up to the labs at uni every time I wanted to do any listening work... This is much better - isn't he a sweetie? :)

I've started planning christmas presents for people. Gonna make most of them I think (I know I say that every year, shuddup!) so get your orders in people! It saves a bit of money plus it keeps my hands


Monday, October 20, 2008

My first lecture was fantastic, I actually really enjoyed it. :) Sat trying to figure out whether to do the reading, learn the anatomy or How bad is that, first day and I'm already considering procrastinating? Don't worry - I'm not being completely serious :)

Got a long day tomorrow. Why is it always Tuesdays? Evil Tuesdays, Emma and I used to call them... Although some of tomorrow is by choice - if I went to bare minimum I'd finish at 12.15! But am taking Spanish + a voluntary phonetics class + gospel choir. So I've only got myself to blame if I come home moaning tomorrow!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Have had a bit of a crazy week. Well, not in the grand scheme of things maybe - but compared to the past few weeks, definitely.

Started my course - lectures start on Monday but have had all the intros, tours around the dept and the labs (wow!!) etc. now. Everyone seems really nice, lecturers are friendly and seem pretty inspiring which is great. There are 13 of us on the course, 10 girls... Approx. half of us are international students so it's a pretty good mix. Am a bit stressed about whether I'll be able to keep up - if my technical knowledge is enough for this course. But I've got more phon and acoustic experience than quite a few of the others so *shouldn't* be a problem. Keep fingers crossed for me!

Have also signed up to do Spanish - 'Level 1 Plus' they call it... Been about 6 years since I did any Spanish and even then I only did it for a year (and didn't go to toooooo many of the classes... oops) so this should be pretty much spot on. Kirsty has already been roped in to help me - hehe! Joanna, interested? Might be able to do Level 2 next semester, or the reading & writing focused course...

Also still working on the Forensic Linguistics course at Umeå. It's fun actually, I can tie quite a bit in with my MSc but it's more linguistics (d'oh!) than speech science. Having said that one of the assignments quotes a JPFA case...


Monday, October 13, 2008

So today I start my MSc! Well, the intro meetings etc start today - lectures next week. Oddly enough I received an email from the dept. administrator at 11pm last night about timetabling. 11pm on a Sunday? I'm very much hoping there was a sending delay and that the poor lass wasn't actually working then! Wouldn't have caught me doing that when I was working in student admin... Sunday nights are CSI Sundays you see - so I'm pretty much lost to the world ;)

Had a great weekend, Benny came up from Sunny Leeds! We walked loads and had drinks and an Italian meal. Was nice to see him, catch up a bit :) We discussed (as all Swedes - or anyone foreign for that matter - in the UK do) the 'how hard can it be' conundrum. There are certain things about this country which I'll never understand - taps for example - how can it all be cultural? Apparently there's a Facebook group if you're interested in ranting about the UK...


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

There was a fire drill here at work this morning. No fire engines showed up though - shame. Because it wasn't very exciting, walking down 3 flights of stairs, stand outside for 2 minutes and then walk back up again. Mind you, the walking probably did me some good.

I've never learnt as much in a job in such a short space of time as I have here. And if I were to subtract the times I've had virtually nothing to do (not counting now - this is my lunch after all) it's an even more impressive account of working for the council. Yep that's right - I'm enjoying working for the council, and learning lots in the process.

Spoke to Annika, who we used to call 'little Annika' not to confuse her with my mother (who would, by that thinking, have been 'big Annika'?? I don't think she would appreciate this...) on the phone last night. Though she's not little any more, in fact she's always been older than me, my whole life. So I'm just gonna call her Annika. Anyway, she's in the UK now on an ERASMUS year and she rang me. It was nice catching up - and just goes to show the greatness of the UK... or what trendsetters Emma and I really were... Lots of people are now moving to the UK. For a year, 9 months, forever... Nice!

I've been told I need to change the background on this blog. Sigh. Apparently those ECTS points in 'usability' (or whatever the current buzzword is in web circles) didn't help me. But you see, when I post to this blog I don't see the background. I type black on white.

Ohh - how poetic - I might have to write something about that... But it will have been done. It's all been done before. ('The Simpsons did it, anyone?)

I've been making a lot of jewellery lately. Finding my feet really. But it bugs me that my ears aren't pierced cos it's easier to make nice earrings. Although it's annoying having to make two exactly the same. Symmetry was never my strong point. Anyway, I'll post some photos at some point.

I think I also promised aaaaall my lovely readers (all two of you?) photos of the flat? Well, they're coming. Soon. I promise.

There's this band playing at a pub ooop nooorth on Friday, with the guitarist from Thin Lizzy. It sounds awesome. Will see if Mike fancies driving after work. I should really learn to drive. I've been promised our car for when I get my licence (obviously provided we can afford a new one by - maybe I shold get it sprayed purple? I like purple cars.


Thursday, September 18, 2008

There are times when you feel completely alone. There is no one you can open up to, no one to share your worries, problems or feelings with. People don't want to hear it, they have no time for you... you have no one. See, the thing is.. there are people you can talk to. It's not hard to find someone who will listen - you can even pay people to do so. But the difficult part is finding someone who till respond the way you want them to, who will react according to your desires.

And this is when you find you are truly alone. Because you're never so alone as when you realise that the reason you're alone, is because you're so unwilling to accept the criticism of others.


Nice little paradox for you there. I should start bringing a notebook on the bus...


Friday, September 12, 2008

Well well. I've just worked 2 days with HR at the council. It's pretty interesting, though I've been doing mostly spreadsheets... I'm sure it'll pick up though, everyone's really nice!

Got my results for the Witness Psychology today - C. How lame! 73% is apparently a C in the Bologna system. Bit of a change from British unis where anything above 70% is a first... Oh well, at least it's better than an E, and the course directors claims it's the equivalent of a VG in the 'old' Swedish system. Sooo I guess I shouldn't complain! Lol.

Got a couple of registrations with some temping agencies next week, hopefully I should never have to struggle for temp work this year. My manager at the moment strongly implied that if they had the funds they would hire me one day a week, which is a good sign!

I've done some sewing, made a very pretty skirt that I should sell... Will see! It's one of those that I *know* I'll never wear, but I love the fabric so much I wanna keep it... Maybe I'll set up that etsy shop after all.


Friday, August 29, 2008

Well! After complaining to PhonePayPlus (OfCOMs partners) I phoned O2 about my lovely texts and they were very helpful! Said they'd investigate and try to get me my money back (they took £9 off in total before they drained my credit...). I'm worried about topping up in case they start texting again. Really can't be doing with this kind of rubbish to be honest, it's just a pain. Apparently, most calls to the O2 customer service line is to do with these premium rate text 'services'. It's disgusting! Anyhoo - I'll stop ranting about that for now, but I'll keep you updated on my riveting run-ins with the corporate world...

As for the course I was on about - they will look into my case on Monday. So fingers crossed everybody!!

We've just bought a TV and a computer (the latter to be used as a server - yay!) and are going to pick them up tomorrow. If there's time, I think we're also going to IKEA tomorrow. So exciting!! I love all this housey stuff. Wish we could paint! I'd be good at painting.

It's Mike's birthday on Tuesday. Sadly he's working during the day, but I'm wondering whether to cook him dinner or take him out. If cooking - any recipe ideas?

I've gotten started on the other part time course I'll be doing this Autumn - it's Forensic Linguistics (not to be confused with my masters - Forensic Speech Science) so it doesn't look too hard considering my experience there. But it'll be a good way of getting into it! The course doesn't actually start until 17th Sept - but I thought I might as well do the reading and draft the essays now as I think come 20th Oct I'll be kinda busy... the FL course runs into January, but is only 25% so another 7.5 ECTS points.

Speaking of those... Will you also keep your fingers crossed that I've passed the courses I did over the summer? Witness Psychology - should find out in 2 weeks or less; and that IT course I never seem to manage to finish... I never thought I'd find it this hard! I don't know actually if it's difficult or if it just bores me senseless. I think the latter...

Walked into town today, it's been roasting! Though no sun - a sheet of grey in the sky and a nice film of sweat on my brow. Got some bargains in H&M though - got a top and a jacket in the sale - sale price was supposed to be £22 for both - somehow I got them for £10! The lady asked if they were in the 2 for 1 sale - in my dozy way I didn't really register what she'd asked until after I'd nodded. But I didn't feel it was my place to correct her after that :)


Thursday, August 28, 2008

And yet again, buerocracy (sp?) and rules are against me...

See, it doesn't make any sense. I've just found out that I apparently don't meet the minimum requirements for a beginners course in Audiology and Acoustics because I didn't finish the Chemistry course when I was 16... How would doing maybe 20 more hours of chemistry 7 years ago possibly make me more equipt to understand something so totally unrelated now? I'm completely non-plussed about that. Anyhoo, I've sent an email to admissions at the Uni in question so keep your fingers crossed for me!

And on a (not at all!) related subject... Someone thought it was funny to sign me up to one of those porn-text services, so I've been getting loads of messages asking if I want this or that sent to my mobile... And they've charged me for the 'pleasure' as well! £1.50 per text received! Please let me make it very clear, for the record, that this is not something I'm interested in (especially not at that price...). I'm planning on writing to OfCOM - not that I will get my £6 or so reimbursed (here's hoping!) but it's not right that someone can sign you up to stuff like that... What if someone signed up a kids mobile to it?? Surely you should at least have to sign up via the mobile in question?

Just realised I've used the expression 'in question' twice in this short post. Lol.

Anyhoo, I've a lot more stuff I wanna moan about but I think the two will be enough for now.

Indignantly yours,


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Ok, it's been a ridiculously long time since I last wrote on here... I'm rubbish! And so much has been happening, not too sure where to start.

Moved up to York the other week. We're living in this lovely (and massive!) flat near the city, starting to fill it up with furniture. Any donations are very welcome ;) I'll be starting my MSc in Forensic Speech Science in October, am so very excited. Mike graduated (with a first! Booya!) and is now working up here as a software developer. Sooo moving to York was definitely a good move, for both of us. It's a lovely city. My family came up the other week and we did touristy things; Pullman's bus tour and Jorvik Viking museum. Oh - they display a human poo in that museum, which was nice...

I submitted a revised version of my dissertation to the International Association of Forensic Phonetics' annual conference - and it got accepted so I went down to Switzerland and presented my paper. It was great! Very scary but it went amazingly well. I made some great contacts as well (whom I've been meaning to email... lazy lazy) from all across Europe.

Am currently finishing a course in Witness Psychology with Gävle Högskola. It's quite an interesting course actually, first time they're running it so it's bound to have its bumps. It's mostly focusing on eyewitness testimony and memory (obviously - the most straightforward - and it's only a 7.5 ECTS course) but I was hoping to be able to connect it to 'earwitnesses' and the things I'll be doing in my masters as well.

Anyhoo, I'll be off for now - with more (empty??) promises that next time I won't leave it so long...