Time to Sell?

Posted in: Mixed on 21 May, 2018 by Amelia

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This is one of the best times to buy and sell in Linköping, where second hand items do a roaring trade. As exchange students who choose to leave the region after their studies move out and sell furniture, many rooms and flats become available to those in temporary accommodation, who then want to buy household items. Mid-August is also a great time to get some cash or find some bargains, as new students arrive in the city.

I’m not moving, but I’m taking advantage of this situation to give my flat a new lease of life, which doesn’t hurt once in a while! So I’ve swapped some curtains, sold a table and gained a rug 🙂 Check out the LiU Noticeboard for opportunities, and there are several dedicated Facebook groups too although I’m not familiar with those. Either way, I’m sure there’s a good deal to be found!


 

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Glasses

Posted in: Mixed on 19 May, 2018 by Amelia

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Yesterday I ordered a new pair of glasses. I’ve worn them part-time since 2003 and full time since 2011, yet I always have such a fun yet difficult time choosing them. See when I got my first few pairs, the societal aim was to get as discreet frames as possible, because less than perfect vision was very much seen as a medical disability and glasses wearers would be bullied. In fact I know someone who switched to contact lenses at a younger than normally-permitted age as a result of such bullying, which is sad, but luckily they liked wearing them. (Whereas I scratched my eyeball twice within three months, so street dancing aside I tend to stick with glasses rather than contacts…it’s so fiddly!)

Anyway, by 2012 fashions and attitudes were changed and a number of chunkier frames had become available, so I picked out what have been my favourite pair so far, rectangular, black and bold! If I had had the choice I’d have just had the lenses replaced in them for the rest of their lifespan, but working with children has its risks, and they ended up well and truly bent… On the advice of a friend I changed my style completely, to a decorative pair that proved very popular, but as replacement lenses aren’t an option at my current opticians, I’ve had to choose again.

It was difficult. On the one hand, it’s amazing that the social model of disability has become more accepted and that glasses no longer need to be hidden. On the other, this means that such large frames are popular that smaller ones like mine cannot even be found, and after receiving instructions from my husband not to choose a, “Harry Potter style,” (whatever that means!) I was nervous about not finding anything which would suit me. Three outside opinions later and I’ve finally placed my order for the largest yet lightest ones I can even imagine…did I choose well? Perhaps I’ll post a picture later and you yourselves be the judge 😉


 

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First Words

Posted in: Mixed, Recreation on 14 May, 2018 by Amelia

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On Saturday two of my lovely friends came over from Stockholm to stay for a night, so we had a lovely afternoon of putting the world to rights followed by an evening of pizza, chocolate cake, and wine. It‘s amazing how sometimes you can not see somebody for several weeks, but then pick up conversations from where they were left off as if only minutes have gone by; that‘s for me the sign of true friendship 🙂

But of course, there are always new topics too, one of which became Swedish words that have been borrowed by other languages. I‘m writing in English, so let‘s focus on that language, for which we immediately came up with tungsten, ombudsman, and smörgåsbord, later adding glögg, lingonberry and moped. This piqued my interest, and I went exploring on the Internet, to find several more examples, teaching myself a number of new English words in the process; I never knew that gravlax is found in English dictionaries, nor lek. Sometimes the intonation has been changed somewhat, but international students who feel they know English but not Swedish can definitely take this as a small head start!


 

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The Door is Always Open

Posted in: Studies on 9 May, 2018 by Amelia

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To campus that is. Which is great if you do silly things like I did the other day, and walk from home to the library having forgotten the very item that needed to end up in the scanner… On the one hand I blame my boss for calling me just as I was walking out of the door, but on the other hand, I was just tired and stupid. Well, anyway, the invoice which I needed to scan was urgent, and by the time I’d walked back to collect it, the library had closed up for the night. This wasn’t a problem though, as I simply used my ID card to access the computer room in Key Building, and then went home yet again, leaving others there hard at work.

Why am I repeating this little anecdote? Basically, I want to highlight to new students that there are some 24hr facilities at Campus Valla, from PCs and printers to kettles and microwaves, and it’s perfectly safe to be alone in a building because of the entry system. After getting a LIU ID card, it’s possible to choose a PIN, and then the card and code can be used to access faculty-specific rooms after they are locked up for the night; only students who need to get in can do so, (and security officers drive around in any case). This means that last minute printing and scanning issues can be resolved, whilst those who concentrate better at 4:00 or have noisy neighbours can go and find a comfy couch on campus to take advantage of. Just remember not to fall asleep, or at least to wake up before those 8:00 lectures start 😉


 

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Vegan Food? No Problem!

Posted in: Food on 6 May, 2018 by Amelia

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I’m going to own up to doing something weird – photographing my nearest supermarket. Yes, I got some strange looks, which is why the rushed images aren’t high quality, but it seems to have worked as a last resort for getting my mother-in-law to believe that veganism is easy!

I usually shop at ICA, and top-up at Hemköp which is pictured here, but I’ve also tried Netto and Coop and can confirm that all stores are very well-equipped. It goes without saying that there is a good selection of fresh fruit and vegetables, breads, legumes, grains, spreads and spices, plant-based eaters can choose from a whole range of those products which my mother-in-law would call luxury:

Personally I’m not a fan of imitation meat and only buy milk for cooking, but it’s great that the choice is there, and I love being able to buy broccoli and peanut burgers, marinated tofu, and shittake paté without heading to a specialist retailer. Not to mention the largest selection of dairy-free ice-cream which I’ve seen anywhere in Europe:

Another positive about shopping here is the clear ingredients lists found on all packed products. Vegan or not, learning just a few Swedish words for allergens makes purchasing groceries very simple, and Hemköp in Ryd even has a specific gluten-free section:

Special diets? Limited choices? No, not here, not at all!


 

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Amelia Gackowska

Amelia Gackowska
Hej, my name is Amelia and I recently moved to Linköping to study the Master programme in Applied Ethics, as I thought it was about time to study the theories behind my activism!

When I am not studying you can find me teaching ballroom dancing, learning Swedish, up-cycling whatever I can find, or getting carried away debating politics into the early hours.

MA in Applied Ethics

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