Thursday, March 11, 2010

Laundry Day

Today was a big step forward in my acclamation to Swedish life, LAUNDRY DAY!

Now in Sicily it was fairly simple. First, we had a washing machine in the apartment. Although we did not have a dryer, we did have clothes lines off of our back patio to let the Mediterranean Sun do its thing. Simple and we could wash at our leisure as needed.

In Sweden it is a bit more complicated.


In Hässleholm, we have two washing machines in the basement for the entire complex to share.

You see the red or black pegs with the spot for the key, mine is #35 (Tom Verti). Across the very top are the numbers 1-31 for the days of the month.

The system is simple but requires planning.

Date and Time constraints

See where it says "DATUM", that's the day of the month. Under the number 1 are two open spaces. If I move my peg into Row 1, I've reserved the 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. slot on April 1st.

Row 2 gets me wash time from 2:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. on the same date.

Rows 3 and 4 are for people not needing to resrve a spot as of now.

Today I was out of bed at 6:45 a.m. to prepare for my first day of washing.

These two bad boys handled a total of three loads for me today!

Very efficient I must say.

The Screaming Eagle!

Actually, after the washer is finished, you can put your clothes in this baby and it will do another spin cycle to help dry things.

The only problem was that after about five minutes of spinning it developed a high pitched, ear splitting, screeching sound worthy of a Gestapo torture.

Enough of that, it was on to the drying room!

No sunshine in Sweden to help now.

Now it was time to move my clothes across the basement hall to the drying room, think sauna for clothes.

This dungeon/bunker like room has no windows and is made of solid reinforced concrete all the way around. It even has a very heavy metal door worthy of Pelican Bay's highest security section.

Press a button and hot air is forced out of the yellow square vent in the middle of this picture. Seal the door, wait about two hours and voilá dry clothes!

Be sure not to seal yourself inside the bunker for those two hours!

It took about five hours all told but it worked.

I'd have to say advantage Sicily on this one.

To quickly even the score at 1-1, Sweden actually has a Vehicle Code for Drivers. Apparently everyone here has read it, likes it and even follows it. I walk the streets in absolute safety as the pedestrian is cordially given the right of way ALL THE TIME!

Galleria Café

I had a cappuccino to celebrate both my Laundry Day successes and the vacuuming of the flat during the two hour drying period.

Afterwards, I explored the town for just an hour.

Bulbs are Blooming

I think I should keep Laurie away from here at all costs this Summer!

Ingemar Johansson
World Heavyweight Boxing Champion

Born in nearby Göteborg, this book on the Champ reminded me of his stunning upset of reigning Champ, Floyd Patterson on June 26, 1959. Ingo was a heavy 5-1 underdog.

That night John Walsh's Dad took a bunch of us to the Los Angeles Coliseum to watch the Dodgers play a game, the Pirates if memory serves me correctly. The crowd was in total disbelief when the stadium announcer relayed that this relatively unknown Swede had won by Knockout in the third round.

The next morning it was even more incredible to read that he had knocked Patterson down SEVEN times in that fateful third round!

A year later there was a rematch that Patterson won to become the first ever Heavyweight Champ to regain his lost crown.

Ingemar finished with a career record of 26-2 with 17 KO's.

He died in Sweden in 2009 at the age of 76.

Flowers and Flames

Anne-Liés Ost & Delikatess

That's Anne-Lié on the left and Berith, a.k.a., "Baby" on the right. They run a great cheese (ost is Swedish for cheese) store.

We are now fast friends after my purchase of a hunk of their very sharp Prastost or Priest cheese.

Priest cheese gets its name from bygone days when Swedish farmers had to give the local priest 10% of everything they produced and only the best would do for the religious leader of the town.

In the evening we had our third practice together concentrating on tackling, defensive contain concepts and learning our base offense and defense. Good turnout and the defense looked much better tonight.

It looks like we may be traveling to Denmark for a scrimmage in April, sounds good to me!

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