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[personal profile] seal
Yesterday I discovered my first tick! I mean, I've known about ticks and what they look like, I've even helped holding dogs and cats when ticks have been removed from them, but never before, to my knowledge have I had one of these disgusting buggers feed on me and have their bodies grow to horrible blood filled sizes while their head was stuck underneath my skin, close to my left collarbone. I called a friend and asked about the best technique to pull them out, and then I just clenched my teeth and did it with a pair of tweezers. It came out, the head was still attached and I could see it waving its disgusting little antennae at me, for having the insolence of detaching it from its food source. I put it on a piece of paper and watched it drag its blood bloated body, ginormous in comparison to the head, which was only barely visible, and then I killed it. I was appalled to see the huge splash of blood on the piece of paper when the body burst like a ripe grape (it was the size of a fairly large pin head), I knew it was my blood, but it still felt like murder, and yet, for some illogical reason I was quite adamant in my gut feeling that I for the life of me didn't want to release this bugger into nature again.

Oh well, I guess I can join the "we hate ticks" choir now, as yet another confident voice preaching that they are completely unnecessary to the biological cycle, and completely disgusting on top of that.

The tick must have joined my bandwagon when I was at the lovely party last Saturday, down by the coast, in a historical building from the late 18th century. I guess I would endure more ticks if I could do it again, since I had a very good time there.

The weather here in Uppsala, has been gorgeous the last couple of days, sunny and warm autumn air with just a hint of a crisp edge to it, apples and pears on the trees and blue skies and all that jazz that Sweden can sport if nature decides to pony up.

I made and served chanterelle soup for the friends I live with currently the other day. All across Uppsala people are selling these golden shrooms and other shrooms, veggies and berries/fruits of the fall, so I'm buying and enjoying the sights:

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When we finished eating chanterelle soup the fish-truck came! In Sweden there is a company that sells fish on line and also has a truck that comes by people's houses and sells fish just like the ice cream truck sells ice cream!

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Apparently they sell all kinds of delicious seafood, and you can go to their website here and order all kinds of goodies to be delivered to your door, their motto is apparently "no delivery is too small". I suspect it may be a little pricey, but the idea is still very appealing...

In academic news, the jury is still out on what classes I'll have to take, even though I've already started classes. I went to the highest bureaucrat at the Academic degree office (examensenheten) this Monday and delivered my case into her hands. She was actually very nice and invested significant time into understanding the case. They'll have a meeting and decide withing a week, worst case scenario is that I'll be right where I'm now. In the mean time, my faculty is starting me in an advanced class, just in case the jury decides to vote in my favor, so as of today I'm taking "law for archivists" on top of everything else (I don't dare quit anything until I know what the decision will be). Exiting times.

Since it's been so gorgeous outside, I've done some walking to some favorite places of old, and I've decided to do some ceremonial outdoor spirituality in the near future and picked out the place for it. It's going to be nice to sleep under bare and familiar skies again and to meditate. I'm also hoping to learn some new paths with my friend G this weekend. He does a lot of walking and biking in old forests in this area and has become quite knowledgeable, so we'll probably go somewhere on Sunday, if the weather holds.

Pictures of Swedish cats and Swedish nature will come, as promised.

Date: 2009-09-10 01:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darquis.livejournal.com
[livejournal.com profile] paivansade got her first tick when we went camping this year. It went right for her ass crack and stayed there for a while, as at first she thought it was an ant bite.

Date: 2009-09-10 01:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
oh my god. Suddenly I'm so grateful for what happened to me...

Date: 2009-09-10 01:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mojodragonfly.livejournal.com
Hi! You bring happy goodness to my world with this post.

Oh, and ticks suck!

Date: 2009-09-10 01:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
Well, you bring me goodness with every post and picture and poem you put up, so that'll teach you!
and god, yes, they suck, doubly!

Date: 2009-09-10 01:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] slomosexual.livejournal.com
Growing up in the swamps of Southern New Jersey, finding ticks was an almost daily occurrence. I've even watched one dissected.

Since I've left I've had to deal with them not at all. Few things creep me out like a tick. They are noxious beings

Date: 2009-09-10 01:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
wow, dissecting a tick..that sounds repellingly compelling, somehow!
Oddly enough, I also grew up in a tick friendly area, and though I saw many on others, I've never to my knowledge had one on me, until now. I guess I'm not a tick virgin anymore.

Date: 2009-09-10 04:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] clsisold.livejournal.com
I have lived in the deer laden, tick infested backwoods for almost 30 years and still haven't gotten used to having ticks on my body or snakes in my house.

Date: 2009-09-10 07:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
To be honest, as long as the snakes aren't poisonous, I'm pretty sure I'd rather prefer having them in my house and around my body than ticks!

Date: 2009-09-10 02:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] scowling-hermit.livejournal.com
Man, I hate ticks! To me, killing them doesn't feel like murder...it feels like vigilante justice. ;)

I do feel guilty about killing wasps or things that have stung me, though, so I understand where you're coming from.

I like the idea of a fish delivery truck. :D

Hope the classes are sorted out soon!

Date: 2009-09-10 08:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
I don't regret killing it, but it was rather messy and bloody!
The fish truck delivers so many kinds of delicious seafood, which is part of what impresses me, I mean, they even have swordfish and lobster!

Date: 2009-09-10 03:25 pm (UTC)
katsu: (Default)
From: [personal profile] katsu
*squirm* I have thus far managed to avoid picking up any ticks, but I feel like it's just a matter of time. Uuuuuuggggh.

Date: 2009-09-10 08:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
There *should* be much fewer ticks in Colorado than in Sweden from what I understand, it's a humidity thing. I hope you can avoid them, after all, I lived a good many years without having one leeching on to me...

Date: 2009-09-10 03:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] browniegirl322.livejournal.com
ewwww will you be tested for Lymes disease? Mike's entire family all managed to get Lymes this summer, including his pregnant sister!


Also, a fish truck you say. I'm a little weirded out by the idea of fish from a truck, but I'm simultaneously jealous i do not have a fish truck of my own.

Date: 2009-09-10 08:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
I will go to a doctor if it gets red around the bite, or if I feel the least tired or funky, but so far, after a day and a half I feel okay and he bite seems go down a bit.

It is a little weird with fish in a truck, although it actually has to pass a pretty thorough sanitation test for the company to have permission to do this thing. Basically it looks like a little fish store on wheels, with a huge freezer tank inside.

Date: 2009-09-10 06:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tooticky.livejournal.com
It's good to be reading from you again sealwhiskers!
Having never dealt with ticks, I feel similarly about leeches. I'm not sure whether them stiffening and then flipping themselves end over end to get to you when they sense your body heat, or the way they attach themselves, is more completely disgusting... but I've seen a school of hungry little galaxa fish all mob a huge one in a mountain stream before, and that was satisfying.
And now for chantarelles - and chantarelle soup - what do they taste like?

Date: 2009-09-10 08:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
Likewise babe! I was just reading your post earlier today, but haven't had time to comment, although I do have some thoughts on the art of editing, so I will. Also, as usual, I did like your story much, but it's been crazy hectic, so I suck at saying stuff about it. I will however.

I have become the worst reader of my friends' writing ever, in the last two years, I still enjoy it though...

Date: 2009-09-10 08:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
I forgot about your chanterelle question!
Chanterelles have a deeper taste than champignons (or portabellas), but is otherwise one of the mildest of the European forest shrooms. They are considered an "easy" shroom to like for children and beginners because of its mild and yet very creamy and pleasing taste. It is a nice shroom to toss into pasta, sauteed in butter, or to make soups, stews and sauces from, or most people just put them on an open face sandwich, after sauteing them in butter.
Edited Date: 2009-09-10 08:36 pm (UTC)

Date: 2009-09-10 07:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zombienought.livejournal.com
I got two ticks on me once, from a day spent
playing and cuddling with a farm dog. I had
four adults clustered 'round me, poking my
naked bum with hot cigarettes.

My father got a tick while camping, and de-
veloped Lyme disease because he didn't make
time to see a doctor, despite the spreading
streaks up his leg.


It sounds like you're having a pretty nice
time. I hope so. Good luck with developing
a degree plan.


Do you have a recipe for chanterelle soup?
Vegetarian?


The idea of a fish truck kind of grosses
me out. Then again, so did my Finnish friend
trying to force herring (and his tongue)
down everyone's throats at NewYear's...

Date: 2009-09-10 08:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
Two ticks at once, and on your bum! The horror!
I'm having a good time, although I miss the geek and my family and I imagine that those feelings will only get worse before I see them.

Chanterelle soup can be made much the same as any home made mushroom soup from scratch. You rinse the shrooms and saute them with leeks or onions in butter and if you want to, you can add some dry white wine after a while. (the wine is not necessary)After a while you add some half and half and some mushroom or veggie broth, let simmer for a bit. If needed add a thickening agent of your preference (or let simmer longer). End with some parsley or fresh thyme.
I play the recipe by ear, but you can really use any good shroom soup recipe you have.
Edited Date: 2009-09-10 08:29 pm (UTC)

Date: 2009-09-11 05:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlsjlsjls.livejournal.com
Tsk ... you just deprived yourself of the world's most quiet and easy-care pet! ***EVIL GRIN***

Amazingly, considering all the time my siblings and I spent tramping through and playing in the still-forested portion of my parents' farm (fully stocked with foxes, deer, grouse, you-name-it), I was the only one to ever pick up a tick ... was 4 or 5 years old I think, and it was on the edge of my upper eyelid, nestled among the eyelashes, which made removal quite tricky. After consulting the family doctor by phone, my mother had me stay flat on my back for hours while hot wet cloth after hot wet cloth acted as a "poultice" (dunno whether they hate to be TOO hot and humid or the heat just accelerated bloodflow and finish of feeding ... either way, it dislodged itself and was duly executed)

The bloodsuckers (leeches) in our river were so much easier to deal with after swimming ... cover 'em with a glob of suffocating vaseline and they couldn't get themselves loose fast enough (same technique would likely have been used on the tick if it had been in a different location)

There are food trucks like that here too ... I grew up with a bakery van that made a biweekly visit to all the farms in three or four townships (the driver would leave our regular order of a dozen loaves stashed in our woodshed on those occasions when the door wasn't answered because everyone was out helping with harvest or something), and in Lethbridge there was a company that brought dairy products and meat to your door (for a hefty price)

Glad to hear you're getting prompt academic service and some lovely weather'n'walks while you're there. :-)

Date: 2009-09-11 09:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
Okay, your tick story wins the prize of the most unsettling! It's a wonder you weren't traumatized for life!
Man...I WISH that there would be a bakery van coming around, that would be so glorious...

Date: 2009-09-11 10:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlsjlsjls.livejournal.com
Nary a drop o' trauma ... I was fascinated by it. But then I'm the one whose earliest clear childhood memory (somewhere around age 3.5/3.75) is standing in a veterinary operating theatre at the University of Guelph watching an emergency c-section being performed on a sow ... that was so cool!

I think our bakery van was unique ... it was a one-man business that boomed in an area where most folk had to drive at least thirty miles to reach a real grocery store.

Date: 2009-09-12 04:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
Clearly you were a very calm and grounded child, with no aversion to blood!

Date: 2009-09-12 06:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlsjlsjls.livejournal.com
***shrugs*** Just the usual for where I grew up ... small, old-fashionedly-operated farms where birth/death/blood/ were normal everyday occurrences and kids weren't particularly sheltered from reality ... in fact the only times I had troubles as a child were when some allegedly well-meaning adult tried to give me the fuzzy pink happyland treatment.

Though I'll grant that getting to watch the c-section was a tad out of the ordinary ... witnessing the regular births, and sometimes stillbirths, of calves, kittens, and puppies was the usual thing local kids had experienced by that age (domestic pigs have a tendency toward middle of the night births, so didn't see that in the ordinary way until I was older)

Date: 2009-09-12 11:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
It sounds like a healthy way of growing up, with aspects which I myself lacked, although, the tick experience I don't begrudge you! ;)

Date: 2009-09-13 03:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlsjlsjls.livejournal.com
Well the result is that I'm a person you can depend on to calmly bandage your gash or capture and remove the terrifying itty bitty spider or mouse without any screaming, freaking out, or fainting. I also don't go to pieces after traffic accidents or other such occurrences. Tick disposal by appointment. ;p

Date: 2009-09-14 07:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
We need to have a Star Trekkish beaming device ready for you when I have my next tick!

Date: 2009-09-13 03:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlsjlsjls.livejournal.com
BTW, an addition to your to-read list: Sam Kieth's graphic novel "My Inner Bimbo" has a selkie in it (and is, as usual for Kieth, far deeper than the title suggests)

Date: 2009-09-14 07:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
Really? that sounds awesome. I've enjoyed and own Zero Girl since many years, so I should really get the rest of his stuff too.

Date: 2009-09-14 10:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlsjlsjls.livejournal.com
At least the sequel to "Zero Girl" if nothing else ("Zero Girl: Full Circle"). Though if you could only pick one, I say get his "Four Women" ... one of the most powerful pieces of fiction I've ever read, graphic or otherwise (this one seriously HAS to have a film, or at least a one-hour tv drama, version made one day)

Every Kieth book I've read has been marvelous ... and as you read more you realize that they're all part of one big story, with characters crossing over between the different titles, making little cameos or being mentioned in passing ... a major player in one tale turns out to be a friend or co-worker or relative of a character in another ... he's slowly linking all the bits of his universe together. :-)

Date: 2009-09-15 08:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
I'm totally going to put some of these on my Christmas list!

Date: 2009-09-12 09:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lizardek.livejournal.com
AUGH. Ticks. *shudder*

Date: 2009-09-12 11:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sealwhiskers.livejournal.com
I take it, you're not going to be the first person I know, to start a tick fan club?
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