Autumn Thoughts

Friday, October 2, 2015
By Marianne Lindahl

Onl MarianneUp here in the North the weather is still warm, 15 degrees on the plus side, which is unusual for our part of the Nordic hemisphere.

The blueberry season is gone, but the forests are full of lingonberries and mushrooms, so there is no lack of ingredients for our rural meals. Our daily visitors, a deer family with two offspring, are coming twice a day to pillage our vegetable garden and newly planted chrysanthemums.

Sometimes you feel like wanting to strangle them, when your beans, salads and flowers just disappear overnight, and you know who the culprits are. But you tend to forgive them, because they are so beautiful and full of grace.

Our Westie, Marta, doesn’t like them at all, and once she starts to chase them, off she runs into the woods like a greyhound. Sometimes I get really worried about
her whereabouts and afraid of losing her. So far I have been able to retrieve her by blowing my magic whistle and giving her some treats.

Soon we will be heading towards our home in Almuñécar, but much has to be done before that. The house has to be prepared for the winter, the boats and jetties have to be taken up onto land and covered, the vegetable garden has to be weeded and turned over, the autumn leaves raked etc…

It’s soothing to think of these practical, everyday chores, when the world is in turmoil. The refugee situation gets worse every day. Now the Nordic countries are just as severely hit as the rest of Europe.

The situation in Finland is catastrophic with nearly a thousand refugees coming over the border from Sweden every day. Most of the refugees are young men, but lately there have been many families with small children. Registration at the border has been made more efficient in order to send back those who cannot be classified as refugees.

On the television news yesterday, I saw pictures of manifestations against taking refugees to Northern Finland, with slogans telling them to go home and fight for their country and not coming to Finland to steal and rape our girls. These protests are mostly based on fear and ignorance.

Many people in the rural areas of Northern Finland have not seen many foreigners, let alone black ones, and their perception is often based on social media and the yellow press.

One thing is clear to the majority of the Finnish people: You have to help those who escape from persecution and terrorism. What is happening in their countries is not regular war, it is the mass slaughtering of innocent people of different faiths and political views.

In Sweden and Finland, people have taken care of the refugees, building camps, welcoming people into their homes and helping organizations like the Red Cross with assistance and basic necessities.

It is difficult to understand how some countries like Hungary treat these unfortunate people who are just looking for a future. On the TV-news we have seen shocking scenes where people carrying small children have been exposed to tear gas and other weapons and forced to make tens of miles on foot.

The flow of unhappy people looking for a better future will just continue, until a solution is found in the countries they are fleeing from.

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