This weekend we went on an outing to a lake called Blaguš. It was situated on the way to Murska Sobota and it was a really beautiful small lake with old big trees surrounding it. The weather was wonderful with sunshine and warmth and we would have gone for a swim if the water would have been more clear. When we arrived one of the first things we noticed was a very modern wooden building where you could rent sups and boats to go out on the lake, which we unfortunately didn’t do. Close to the rental house there was also a small cafe and a place where they sold pizza and right behind it there was a glamping spot. It was the first time I saw a glamping and we all were surprised about how nice it actually looked, so maybe we will go there some time for a stay over night. But we also had a good laugh about it because it looked a bit silly. As I mentioned in a previous blog post, one of the things I miss here the most is water and the feeling you get gazing out over the surface, so I guess that longing made the whole experience even better. After going for a walk around the lake we found a very nice spot to eat some very tasty vegetables we had brought from the farm along with some other food. We sat on a meadow filled with flowers and next to a beautiful oak tree that was going out over the water. We got the advice to go to Balguš from Maja and I can also warmly recommend going there if anyone feels like going on an outing in the area.
Not so long ago I got back from my holidays. I decided, after a lot of thinking back and forth, to spend all my vacation-days on a trip back home. In the end it felt like just the right thing to do and I had an amazing time. Why I decided to spend all my days at once is mostly because of how long the journey is. To Stockholm from Maribor it took almost 40 h and lets just say I was tired when I arrived home. I have never been away from Sweden for this long before so even though everybody said it would feel like no time had passed at home it was another thing to experience it. It felt like everything was exactly the same, even the port code hadn’t changed. In total I was away for almost four weeks and returning back took the same amount of time. The feeling of coming back was a bit the same as returning home, so much is still the same but you feel different. One thing I quickly noticed was that the pear tree outside of the RV where I am staying was bearing fruit. I had admired the beautiful flowers in spring when I first moved in and thought that there would be a lot of pears in autumn. And there were, although a lot of them were already lying on the ground starting to rot. They were not so tasty to eat as they were so in order to at least use some of them and save them from just rotting I decided to make a pie. I was really craving something sweet and thought that although I never heard about a pear crumble pie, fruit and crumble literally can’t go wrong. I think it turned out quite nicely so I thought I could share the recipe.
Pear crumble pie
1 kg pears
1 tbsp lemon juice
Grounded cinnamon and ginger to taste
125 g vegan butter
80 g sugar
60 g wheat flour
40 g oats
Cut the pears in any shape you want, I did it in tiny squares, and put it in a baking form. After that add lemon juice and the spices and mix it so that everything is covered by the spices. Now it is time for the crumble. Start by mixing together all the ingredients in a bowl, it is easier if the butter is room-temperature. When the dough almost holds together, crumble it over the pears and bake in the oven at 225° for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Enjoy!!
Serve with a yoghurt dip or hummus.
One thing I quickly noticed when walking around Jarenina in the beginning of the project was that there is not so much water surrounding the village. There is a small stream and a lake some kilometres away but it is a built lake where you are not allowed to swim. I have always lived close to water. When I was little it was different lakes and later the ocean. Me and my family even lived on islands in the archipelago for a while. I think it was first when I came here that I realised how important water is for me, it makes me feel free. Some weeks ago we went to the seaside and when I saw the sea I felt so much more emotions than I thought I would. I gazed over the constantly moving waters and felt home. Because of this I started to think about how much more you learn about yourself during a project like this than you expect. I also came to realise that when you try out new things it is sometimes the thing you always took for granted that you need the most.
If there is no I.
I see you. I am I and You are You.
What about you? You see me. And you say:‘‘I am I and You are You.‘‘ What is the difference?
But I don‘t want this experience. I want to experience everything. I want to see everything in its fullest
form of existence. I want to see the world with all eyes in this world. I want to feel every sensation that is felt in this world. I want to experience everything that is experienced in this world.
I feel restricted and unbalanced in my individual existence. I want to be more than just me. I want to do
more than these hands can do. I want to think more than this mind can think. I want to nurture more than this soul can nurture.
I want to be you, listening to the nightingale singing in the tree. I want to be the nightingale, singing in the early morning, watching the sun rising on the horizon. I want to be the sunbeam, reaching over the hill, warming the earth and the air. I want to be the wind, blowing over the land and the sea, moving and
everything it touches. I want to be everything the wind touches.
I am you and you are me. If you are everybody in this world, then there is no you and me anymore. There is just us.
If we recognize that the self is not real outside of our perception we can be free. Free to be everything.
Free to be united with all creations.
All good qualities in this universe are the product of loving caring for the well-being of others, and all
frustration and confusion of suffering are products and effects of selfish attitudes. But is it possible to
trade yourself in for others? Our experience confirms that we can change our attitudes towards certain
types of people that we previously found obnoxious and terrible; that when we get closer to such people and learn to understand them, we can change our attitudes and be different. Exchanging the ego with others does not mean that you physically transform yourself into others, but rather that you transfer the attitude you have towards yourself to others. The overly loving concern one feels for oneself should now be shifted to others so that one naturally tends to work for the welfare of others instead of one's own.
There are two main barriers to developing such an attitude. The first is the strict distinction between the ego and the other: the ego and the others are viewed as completely independent and separate quantities. In reality, the ego and the others are relative, like "this side of the mountain" and "that side of the mountain".
From my perspective, I am the me and you are the other, but from your perspective, you are the me and I am the other. We are naturally indifferent because we feel that the happiness and suffering of others are none of our business; they are irrelevant to us. Then we need to remember that there are certain types of people, such as our loved ones, whom we love very much. Your loved ones are not you, but the happiness and suffering they experience touch you. We also treat our own body with great value, regardless of the fact that it is made up of many limbs - head, hands, legs. In the same way we should look at what unites us, the common trait shared by all sentient beings, the natural desire to achieve happiness and avoid suffering.
Dalai Lama - The Path to Freedom; p. 158-159
When I was little me and my mom used to go out and pick elderflowers when their flowers where shining white against the summer greenness. Since we lived in a city It was always a thrilling adventure to go out and find just the right elderflowers trees cause we needed to be able to reach the flowers and preferred if the trees where not growing to close to a major road. When we picked the flowers my mom always said that it is important to say thank you to the tree and say what we are going to use its flowers for, which I still try to do while harvesting from nature.
After we picked the flowers we put them together with sliced lemons and lemon juice in a bucket and boiled together sugar and water. The sugar-mixture were later pored over the flowers while till hot. The bucket was then kept in a cool dark space and was being stirred twice a day. After three days we put the mixture through a strainer and into glass bottle and enjoyed an amazingly tasting elderflower-syrup.
This is our traditional way of making elderflower-syrup and when I saw the beautiful trees here I immediately wanted to do it here as well. I used smaller jars instead of a bucket and the syrup turned out really good. Below are the quantities of all ingredients.
30-40 elderflower flowers
1 1/2 l water
1 l sugar
A while ago we had the on-arrival training with the ESC. It was sadly online but they really tried to make the best of the situation. One task we had during the training was to create projects in groups. The projects could be anything and if it was possible we could also go through with it and carry out the project. Everyone in my group wanted to do something outside that we could actually do. When I was younger I was active in a nature-protective organization and I remembered that we talked about doing gorilla-gardening with seed bombs. I was a bit sad because we never actually did it in the organisation so I suggested that that could be our project. The others in my group thought it was a good idea so we went for it! One in my group is a graphic designer so she made this very nice informative paper on how to do it and what it is. Seed-bombs are balls that consist of clay, solid and seeds that you throw in dull areas that you want to brighten up with some beautiful flowers or other plants.
I actually made the bombs after the training which was very easy here because the soil is so clayey. It was super-easy and when they dried they got very solid but didn’t crack which I was a bit concerned about. Right after I made them we went to Ljubljana to meet some other volunteers and we stayed with one in my project-group. Therefor I brought some of the seed-bombs so that she got to throw some as well. I have some left still for Maribor and Jarenina and my plan is to go and throw them so that I can see if they grow at all and work.
I am so fascinated with this type of actions where you bring nature into citys. I think it is a really good way of both brightening up and also sending a message. When I get back home I think I will continue to make seed-bombs so that people around me always can enjoy a bit of nature.