Monday, April 23, 2012

Petter Polacek's Wonderful Bread!

Bröd Kultur = Bread Culture.  Well, let me say, this place has IT!
There are a few "Gold Nuggets" around .........

We have some favorite places let me tell you, where the staff, the products, and the ambiance is superb.  On top of that list is Petter Polacek's Bakery where he bakes sour dough bread with love, with care and with pride in his stone oven creating aaah, lovely loaves with that characteristic crust that is so good and the inside, well you just have to try it.

Having lived near San Francisco where sour dough bread is a big part of that cities culture I must admit that Bröd Kulturen at Henry Dunkers Place is well, kicked up a few notches.

Petter never hurries his dough as he lets it raise overnight.  Using whole grains, no chemicals, various kinds of fiber, flax and other seeds such as toasted sunflower seed, fruits and nuts as well as grains from a local micro brewery previously used in the fermentation of the beer.

As you can see there are assorted and various other hard to resist temptations!  Cinnamon, cardamon sweet bread, brioche, catalans and scones are among other yummies.

Choosing is never easy.
What now seems a long time ago our former neighbors, Ann Britt and Bosse, mentioned that they loved shopping there....... they live in Mölle.  When I was at the bakery picking up a baguette a while back I struck up a conversation with another customer waiting her turn, she told me that she now has discovered "THE BEST".   She simply cannot shop for bread anywhere else.  She drives to Helsingborg from Höganäs.


So if you "build it" and put love into what you do it can pay off!  Hopefully Petters customers will tell him how glad they are that he is there at four in the morning baking his delights for them and for me.

We just did!
Today you can even find Petter's breads at Oldsbergs Ost in Höganäs another one of our most favorite places....... good bread, good cheese and some nice wine what else could one want?

Monday, April 16, 2012

Land of Extremes- Land of Lagom

Kullaberg Lighthouse Point
The constant here is the never ending beauty!  The architecture, the countryside, the ocean, ponds, lakes, animals and birds galore, quaint villages, thatched roofs, forests and oh the gardens with all those flowers and tended hedges!

Arild Hamn
 This Scandinavian LIGHT!

At the same time it is a place with such extremes!  The old and the new, the old fashioned and the modern, the cold and the warm, the bright and the dreary.
Our own emotional journey since coming here has gone from euphoria to despair like never before!
We have met some of the most beautiful and kind people and some of the most generous and helpful people.

And, along the way, a couple of the ugliest, most hurtful, unbending and unreasonable people.......
also an experience like never before.........

Arild Village
Living in a place like Sweden with all it's incredible beauty on one hand

Working Mill near Ingelstrade
along with it's, in my estimation, "ugly" side is a conundrum.  Sorry is a word I have not heard since arriving here, other than from my husband.  You could get knocked over, pushed over or otherwise hurt yet "I am sorry" is not a term you will hear, not from the person who inflicted the pain!  Nor, it seems to me,  people here do not  take any personal responsibility for things "gone wrong".  This is a generalization of course, but it seems to be a fact in our experience.

Walking Path near Sofiero
In interpersonal relationships if  things go awry you don't try to fix it you simply ignore it and hope it goes away or  you change partners.  As if that is easier than mending it or working it out?  So how deep do the feelings go?  Is there no TRUE friendship or TRUE relationships?  Of course there must be some of those,  somewhere.

Helsingborg Hamn
On a television program last night  with the guests Jan Eliasson, a well known politician and diplomat, and Lena Endre', an actor, the oh so common Jante's Law was brought up, yet again!  These are rules to live by followed by many swedes.  The discussion brought up the cultural differences between Sweden and the US.

Aksel Sandemose is the author of "The Law of Jante" and was written and established in early 1930 and it losley reads as follows:

Don't think that you are somebody.
Don't think you are as good as us.

Denmark in the Distance
Don't think you are wiser than us.
Don't think you are better than us.

Don't think you know more than us.
Don't think you are worth something.

Near Råå
Don't think that you can laugh at us.
Don't think that anyone cares.

Råå Strand
Don't think that you can teach us something.

This "law" describes the attitude towards individual effort by placing all emphasis on the collective and discouraging those who stand out as achievers!

Discouraging "standing out" in ANY form!  Including wearing a RED shirt for example!

House in Råå
Still as we all can see not all things are equal, ..... there are very small houses and very big houses!  Here the government has restrictions and controls on everything for the good of the people and society.

Yes, there are rent controls.  For good and bad... We, for example, considered renovating our storage building as an apartment to rent out and discovered that what we could charge would by no means make the investment worth while.  We have also considered creating a shop/cafe' but with the bureaucracy turning into a nightmare and the realization that it  would be a big uphill battle including the swedish cultural differences we decided against it.  So, let me not get started on the Government Controls!

Even folks with limited means can live with an ocean view.  That is part of the UP side.

Råå Main Street
On the DOWN side since rents are purposely kept low,  so everyone can afford it,  new construction suffers and is way behind the need.

House in Råå
So much to ponder!  So many ideas to process.  So much to learn.  So many ups and so many  downs...
Oh, my husband just presented me with a glass of champagne! On a Monday evening.... Thank you!:-)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Oh, Landskrona at Öresund

We had a delightful evening with friends, who invited us for juniper smoked salmon, and boy was that fish "the best", yes it was!  We talked about how different some things are between Sweden and the US concerning kids working, salary variances, cultural differences and we, in the midst of all that seriousness had a lot of laughs.  It was fun, they are great friends, we appreciate them much.  Then we came home to Ralle who was thrilled to see us.  We LOVE that Pyrenees!  He is our boy.  Yes, Mister was glad too but it's different with cat love. :-)
We wake up to an unusually bright morning with a full moon hanging in the sky "like a big pizza pie" to copy Dean Martin, outside our window.

While the coffee is brewing the candles are lit, a regular morning ritual at our house.  How we love this glow while we sip and nibble.

Destination Landskrona........ Off we go, but first a little short stop to ... yea you know, morning business break.

The car is headed southward along the coast

this clear beautiful morning

past farms and meticulously groomed fields.  Breathtaking!  Beautiful!  Incredible!

The Citadel Castle is our destination.

Built for war in 1549 The Citadel is the best preserved water fortress in Scandinavia.



With not one but two moats surrounding it.

 The castle is very impressive as are the massive earthen walls.

This bright beautiful day with  low clouds above

we can hear the swish swosh of wings and

see swans who appear to be looking

for some familiar landmark

 in a desire to find a place to land.

So they do, with skill and grace.

What a sight!
What a delight!
What a privilege!

Following the path around the fortress we find fishermen hoping to catch dinner.  Wondering, so what fish is it that lives in this awesome surrounding?

Just look!  Wouldn't you want to live here too?

A Swedish Lion is proudly standing watch on one of the ramparts looking for intruders.

We take the same road home marveling over how different it looks from this opposite perspective. Passing many lovely homes and the always glorious scenery.

Another perfect outing, what a great morning.  Now home for a little lunch.  Tuna Salad Sandwich anyone?

"The Antique Road Show"

Ha, Ha fooled you?  This is our version of the "Road Show" as we and our charges zig zag through the village :-)
Sometimes we are six other times twelve, depending on desire and weather the experience is a bit different.  We take a different route or we "push" a different person.  Thanks to Anita who asked if I was interested in helping out on Thursdays to walk with some of the residents at a local elder care facility I have had this pleasure and this time we brought Ralle along.  He was a hit!

He was touched, stroked, talked to, admired and he enjoyed every moment.  The dear lady in purple  was not so keen on him ..... we are not all lovers of dogs.  Yet we had one of the workers at the home come outside to see us asking if Ralle was a Vi'Skaly's dog?  Amazing to me.  I swear Ingela, Pernilla and Kennel Vi'Skaly's is as "world famous" as Ralle.

We "toodle" through the village on our walks, poking around in old parts of town as well as checking out the newly constructed areas, chatting with each other, with the person we are wheeling or with passers by.  It's a wild sight as you can see.  David came along on our walk snapping these images this particular day with Ralle in tow.

The residents many of whom have lived in the village for the major part of their lives will tell stories of where they lived or what they worked with, they talk about Edward Persson, a famous Swedish actor, who grew up, lived and was buried here.  We hear stories of fishing and swimming when we walk to the ocean and gardening another passion for many as we pass yards now loaded with spring flowers. This group of residents along with their "drivers" enjoying the fact that we are still on the "green side" of the grass!