Posted by Sari
I've got a flu. Not an especially bad one, but flu nontheless. What makes this difficult is that Jukka should not get infections because that might slow the chemo time table. And, it is of course clear that I went and got this flu deliberately just to sabotage his recovery. I just love irrational guilt.
Jukka seems to be feeling better after this, the third chemo session than he did after the second one. The greatest problem at the moment is that we are running out of juices for him to drink. Water apparently tastes afwful, and we have been through all the non-citrucy juices and sodas available in Finnish shops one by one. First cranberry was OK, then ice-tea, then this mango-passion-fruit-grapes-apple thing, but now all of them have lost their allure, and I am running out of ideas. At the moment the home-made currant and lingonberry juices (thanks to Ylva and PÃ¤ivi for replenishing my stores) seem to be going down reasonably well. I think I try blending the commercial juices with mineral water to cut down the sweetness and to add carbon, maybe that will help.
He also still sleeps a lot but he has been in a better mood. I think the company is cheering us both up. We have had constant stream of visitors which certainly relieves the monotony of endless hours of watching TV. As, Jukka says in Finnish below, special thanks to our clever, clever friends who found his Amazon wish-list and bought him a nice selection of books and CD's.
And special thanks must also be given to Finnish Tolkien society for a truly classy gift. Now, for those thousands of visitors who are not in familiar with our tribal traditions, Finnish Tolkien Society arranges a party on Bilbo's and Frodo's birthday, and everybody brings a gift and receives one randomly in return. There are few pieces of mathom which circulate year from year and generation to generation. I wonder who has that thing with a wooden handle and a metal ring welded at the other end? I don't think we ever found what it actually was. Anyway, to continue this fine tradition a delegation from the birthday party descended on us with as fine piece of mathom as I have ever seen. A mermaid cigarrette-lighter whose nipples glow when you light it. This is not exactly it but pretty close. What a wonderful addition to our collection of erotic kitchenware. We have put her next to the small statue of Lenin who is wearing a snout as a hat. I know, I know, you have to see the whole tableau to really get it.
As Jukka has had plenty of visitors to keep him entertained I have braved the outside world. Tarja and I went to Love and Anarchy film festival to see Devdas, a hindi melodrama we had seen before on DVD, but wanted to see on big screen. Devdas was maybe the fourth or fifth hindi film I saw and found the costumes, scenery, coreography and music wonderful, but the acting extremely stiff and the dialogue and story unwieldy. Now, after having seen closer to thirty hindi films, I liked Devdas much better. There were a number of cultural references I now understood much better and I was much more receptive to the melodrama. It would be interesting to see the 1950s version of Devdas with Dilip Kumar as Devdas to make comparaisons.
I was also at the British Embassy for a seminar on "Cross Cultural Confusion" on Friday last. It was great fun to use the academic part of my brain for a change. I have been so tierd these few months that I have not actually been doing work in any meaningful sense, just mechanically going through my sources. Especially interesting was professor Chesterman's lecture on Memetics. I am not sure there is anything really new from the perspective of cultural studies in the thing (unless, of course, neurologists will find physical traces of memes in our brains one day), but it gives an interesting framework through which to analyse the spreading of ideas within a culture.
Next big outing will be Finlandia Trophy My sister and I have whole event tickets and plan to spend the whole weekend at the rink. Yay.