Sunday, November 26, 2017

Love passes with love

It has been a while, hasn't it?

How we deal with disappointments is what decides the person we are. And I have had my fair share of disappointments.

In May 30th 2017, exactly a year after I left the dearest person to me at the time back in Finland, I decided to change my life forever. I stood in front of the mirror, took a hard, cold look at myself and decided that it was enough. I looked me in the eyes and said out loud:

"Take a good look at yourself. Today it is the last time that you see this person in front of you. Take a good look, because this person is going to disappear and from tomorrow you are going to build a better version of yourself, the best version of yourself".

And it began. I cut alcohol, sugary drinks, candy, pizza and every unhealthy lifestyle choice that I was used to overnight. I set it as a goal to speak fluent Swedish by the end of the year, get my six pack, make friends and find a job. A true american dream. I woke up in the morning with an old coat for a pillow and  the earth was last night's bed.

Per Angusta Ad Augusta

Something strange but also familiar happened over the first few months. I saw my body change and I was one more sadistically enjoying the pummeling of my face and body in the boxing class with the veterans. Carpe fucking diem. But above everything, I grew in confidence. I could see it in my posture, I had better grip over my mind and body and the nightmares about the girl with the yellow dress lessened instead of standing frozen in time and space.

My little baby project, the SIWI Sofa.
With confidence came friends and progression. I met two wonderful women, Lauma and Hayriye and more recently Lila and my Swedish improved exponentially. Down went the weight, and down went the burden on my shoulders. I received a call from the Swedish International Water Institute, where they wanted me of all people, to take charge and make an event that was launched for the first time ever a success. You bet I delivered. Here is a picture of my creation on the right.

Then my contract ended and I gave myself one month to find a job. Not because I wanted to, but because I had to and time and money were running out. And boy I delivered.

I finally got an interview with a big international company in Stockholm. I felt it was do or die. I walked in the office and I had a great interview in Swedish. The boss told me that he wanted me to meet the head of operations next week and so did we. The interview was in english and it was the best one I have ever given. The last time I felt such certainty was after a long exhausting exam to obtain the Certificate Proficiency in English 15 years ago. I knew I nailed it.

A week passes, walking under a bridge in Skanstull and I get the job. Boom, you are starting November 1.

My life changed overnight. No more worries about food, rent or survival. I shaved my head, changed my clothes, kept going to the gym 7 days a week. My friends call me boring, but I am in the best shape of my life. I started at 77 kilos and today I was 67,5. Now, I am not the guy to post half naked pictures like I am staring in Twilight but I am proud of myself.

Last week I was in Paris for training with work, in a seminar about safety and hazardous materials and chemicals. It was a long and exhausting but wonderful experience with a great bunch of people from Spain, Belgium, Germany and France.

The problem was...Paris. can you put it...Paris was like a rude beautiful woman. Lovely and mystical but when she opened her mouth you wondered in shock and awe. From the rats, to the ridiculous, expensive and terrible metro, to the smell of piss and dirty streets of a modern metropolis, to the terrible architecture in some points, to amazing breathtaking views in other places, it left me craving my home. A home that lies in Stockholm.

Eduardo was one of the guys from Spain. He was a tall super nice and funny guy that likes to run and works as a hydrogeologist. He often laughed at my jokes, especially when I squeezed that lemon accidentally in Paolo's eye. Paolo was Italian/Spanish, living and working in Madrid and having a second life with a Pirate metal band. Yarr. He seemed unable to control his laughter when I said the words "Crystal Meth" which was an incident in the Eiffel Tower. If you want to follow and support his band the link is here. Lovely. Jorn was the teacher and he is the most laid back, funny and great person I have met in such a position yet. He told us a lot of great stories and some of them involve him sleeping in the office and drinking something weird called dragonball.

Other than that...well life goes on and I am growing in confidence in my position every day that passes, both with the language and skills. I am planning a little escape in January to Iceland with a little aurora, to see a little aurora. Mystery is my middle name. Fais mois rever encore une fois.

This is the end. And a new beginning. Why you ask? Because one cycle just closed and a new chapter began. A nightingale sings his song of farewell, the winter is coming. Your heart turns to stone and you are longing for warmth. But then again, what is love without lust?

Goodnight Sweden.

PS. There are a couple of song references, can you find them?

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