Cooped Up in Hotel Room

Dear Reader, it’s raining in Hangzhou and I am not well. I have had the shits since Wednesday evening, some headache, and last night I seem to have had a fever. Both of the latter problems are kept at bay by wonderful ibuprophene. I was fully active and enjoyed myself Thursday and Friday. But I’m spending Saturday in my hotel room, with Junior in his across the hallway, because he’s not in great shape either.

I have just finished proof-reading a large chunk of my Östergötland book, mainly killing mishyphenations, though I had to stop for an hour’s nap while the latest ibup pill took hold. I’m thinking of going to the nearby supermarket with Junior to get some sweetened soy milk and other victuals, and also of starting packing, since tomorrow we go home to Sweden. It’s been great here, but two weeks is too long for a vacation. I need to prepare for test pitting in the Pukbergsgrottan cave and call landowners for test pitting in wetlands during July. I’m very happy that at least I’ve been able to stay on top of my email here.

How are you spending your Saturday?

Comments

  1. #1 dustbubble
    June 4, 2011

    Trying to figure out how to safely detach a painted plaster wall-surface prior to demolishing (most gratifyingly) said wall with a mell and point. And a lot of coughing, no doubt.

    Will require a regrettably large dose of ale & whisky to recuperate, I fear.

    (note for concerned art-historians: the mural is not of any value except to ‘Er Indoors, whose work it is.
    Aeons ago, when the kids were tiny, she painted a cheerful marine life scene above the old iron bath. Bath moved to new location in enlarged house, wall coming down to enlarge minute kitchen (and reinstate a long-buried fireplace), so mural to be moved too .. or else ..

    So I’m frantically studying the methods of Pompeii’s conservators and those who save seismically-ravaged frescoes. I think I’ve cracked it in (a very ad-hoc way). Rice-flour paste, old bedsheets and scraps of linen net, hide-glue size and newspapers, wooden frame sunk in round it and cross-battened, load of old browning plaster chucked on, and the whole lot pre-hung from the ceiling joists with fencing wire. Then attack bricks from other side when set).

    Well, you did ask, Martin!
    Any advice gratefully received. If I destroy it, I might as well start walking to China, with my worldly goods in a blanket.

  2. #2 Thomas Ivarsson
    June 4, 2011

    Yesterday I visited and followed a very nive guided tour in Uppåkra, despite the nice weather here in Malmö, that should force you to beach. Today I bought and assembled a sun lounger and will read more about Uppåkra, some professional data warehouse software and enjoy a cold beer in the sun.

  3. #3 Martin R
    June 4, 2011

    Sounds like a fun task though! What’s hide-glue size?

  4. #4 Birger Johansson
    June 4, 2011

    Marine life scenes come in two variants;
    Minoan marine style, or Chtulhu depictions (the latter copied from the scribbligs of some insane New England artist who killed himself shortly after having tried to describe what he had seen in a drug-induced vision).

    I spent a perfectly sunny Saturday reading a “Jack Reacher” novel. Reacher being the American protagonist, not the British author who seems to have a real knack for ‘Merican Noir.

    Martin, avoid the eHEC bug on your way back unless you have a kidney donor lined up.

  5. #5 dustbubble
    June 4, 2011

    Size? Sorry, that’ll be me talking jargon again (trying to keep it short).
    It’s old-skool wood glue, the sort you heat in a pot, made from animal skins and any other left-over bits with a lot of collagen in them. Thinned out until its just a kind of varnish.

    Just some stuff I had in the shed, like all the rest of it. Hopefully reversible with warm water, like the rice paste (didn’t have any wallpaper paste, or even flour), so I can get the frame off without taking all the paint with it, when I stick the Great Khazi Frescoes on the new wall, and replaster.

    That’s the trouble with modern adhesives. They’re just too damn’ good!

    Birger, it’s multicoloured cartoon sharks, and fish, and octopuses with toothbrushes, mucking about in the sea vegetables. So I’d say, definitely in the Minoan tradition.
    Not an Ancient One in sight.

    Righty-ho. I’ve covered “size”. Now, Thomas, what would this “sun” thing be that all you continentals go on about? I have heard about it, we’re not complete provincials out here on the Islands you know.
    Is it kind of like a hole in the sky?

  6. #6 Birger Johansson
    June 4, 2011

    Dustbubble, from here it is a faint disc that comes up two hours during winter days. Quoting Douglas Adams: “A million trillion tons of superhot exploding hydrogen nuclei rose above the horizon, managing to look insignificant, chilly and slightly damp.”

    BTW I just found out that two weather systems collided maybe 100-150 km north of here, creating several trombs (whirlwinds, pale cousins of the American tornados). Sweden gets maybe one or two dozen over a summer, but 4-5 in the same day?
    I leave the Nyar-lath-hotep temple unattended for one lousy weekend and the acolytes fuck up the incantations!

  7. #7 Martin R
    June 4, 2011

    Hey Bubble, should you really stick the mural to a wall again? How about making it permanently mobile?

  8. #8 dustbubble
    June 5, 2011

    The thought did flit across the vast empty prairie of my mind, but Then I remembered how surrealistically clumsy some of the family are (Mr-Bean-on-acid-stylee).
    It would have to be bolted to the wall, and stick out awkwardly > cleaning/painting problems.
    And with any luck we’ll both be dead before we have to move house, and then nobody will care.
    I mean, it’s not like it’s any good. Never said that!

    Just sentimental value, to two old fools.
    Kids would rather have the whole house painted black, with Black Metal album art decoration, and animal skulls set in the plaster, Jericho-style. And the windows bricked up, probably.

  9. #9 Jonathan Jarrett
    June 5, 2011

    I spent Saturday finishing a very in-field blog post then went into town to meet two of my best friends from Cambridge, who had come to visit, ate lunch with them, showed them the college where I currently work, visited the huge number of brass-bound scientific instruments and astrolabes (plus some other stuff) in the Museum of the History of Science) and then came back here, cooked chilli con carne and ate it, drank beer and brandy and played Robo Rally. I believe you would endorse this use of a Saturday :-)

  10. #10 Birger Johansson
    June 5, 2011

    (OT) -Monday June 6, it’s the national day of Sweden.
    S. has no strong recent history of nationalism -we only invented a “National Day” in 1977, and the national anthem says “Norden” (the whole region, including stuff like Finland, Iceland and Norway) instead of “Sweden”.
    But if we should have a national anthem with a more overtly patriotic theme for the national day, I would rather have it performed the way of The Muppets:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYWW56DvtEI&NR=1

    Or you can go all arty and listen to Marble House by Swedish band The Knife:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WhQ5TiBHVk

  11. #11 Martin R
    June 6, 2011

    Jon, indeed, I approve this message!

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