Scandinavian News: Asylum Seeker falls into popular Icelandic Waterfall

The Iceland Monitor reports that a man, reported to be an asylum seeker, has fallen into the freezing waterfall of Gullfoss, a popular tourist hotspot for short day trips from Reykjavik.

Gullfoss, which means Golden Falls in Icelandic, is on the ‘Golden Circle’ of popular tourist destinations.

Reports do not state how he fell in, whether the conditions were windy, or he that got too close to the ravine. No crime had been reported.

Years ago, there was speculation that the beautiful waterfall was going to be used to generate electricity but Sigríður Tómasdóttir, the daughter of Tómas Tómasson, who owned it at the time, was determined to preserve the waterfall and even threatened to throw herself down it. However, Gullfoss was eventually sold to the State of Iceland where is currently protected.

The government’s cap of asylum seekers is just 50 asylum seekers a year, according to The Independent recently. A large search and rescue team, of at least 145 people, has been going on for several hours but so far, they have not found him.

Link: free

My Frugal Birthday Experience Idea

People are spending far too much money on gifts, and so much time hunting for them. Also birthday gifts can create even more ‘clutter’ in your house.

We are in the era of families not meeting ‘properly’ and ‘talking’. People can be very isolated now. I find when people meet at birthday dinners people don’t ‘really talk’, and some of them, don’t find birthday dinners fun, perhaps they hate mingling. Some of us feel ‘forced to go’ if relatives are more distant. Also, there is not much to do, and introverts like me, find them uncomfortable. Birthday meals can be very pricey for everyone.

I thought that instead of having a ‘proper’ birthday gift or dinner. I would have an experience, and I am not just talking about an experience that is just for me, ie those Red Letter Days type of experience, which also can be expensive but something everyone will generally enjoy.

I wanted a more frugal and Scandinavian ‘hygge’ experience. So what I thought was for me and a few of my friends and relatives to visit a wildlife rescue centre – that way it would be interesting and educational and it would make a difference to the animals there. It maybe a bit ‘sad’, but I think the fact that all of us will being doing something to help, will really make a ‘mark’ on everyone.

They could make a donation too, and even a small donation, can make a big difference with several people going. There maybe a ‘shop’ there or they could bring in food and bedding for the animals. People with children can also go along, so it would be good for them too. They will also see how much damage cars can cause with our wildlife, that will be an eye opener too. You never know, the trip may mean that the charity will get more donations in the long run, and even new volunteers. The trip could inspire people to do good things. Birthdays can also be ‘serious too’ but I think it is important to have some light bits in it, to balance things out.

Afterwards, we would have an informal picnic somewhere, and people would bring their own things to share. People will be able to talk more ‘normally’ than in a formal, restaurant setting. I am a huge fan of picnics. They remind me of my childhood and I don’t see why we can’t have more ‘picnic birthdays’. My birthday is in July so I’m quite lucky in having reasonably good weather, though we will need a ‘back up’ if it rains, of course!

I was lucky to discover that there is a good dog show nearby as well, and suggested we go there afterwards, if they wanted to. That would give them a bit of flexibility too so they didn’t have to stay if the couldn’t. Most people in my family are animal lovers and I think animals and birthdays are a ‘great frugal mix’. There is something to do too, not just talk.

I already I have had people saying they want to ‘swipe my idea’ which is great. I am not celebrating it until in two week’s time, but if you want to have a ‘frugal birthday’, and one where you can ‘make a difference’, you don’t have to celebrate it on your day, as there may be things that are fun that are around on a different day, perhaps in your own area. My experience can be great for ‘keeping things local’ and reducing air miles, if your friends and relatives are local.

I really like this the animal charity birthday idea as this will make a difference to the animals too, and I hope my relatives and relatives will talking about this ‘birthday experience’ for years to come. Maybe they will do something similar too?

Just for your info, I will be going to Folly Wildlife Rescue, in Tunbridge Wells and keep you posted.

UK: The ‘Pressure’ on Women to be Bleached Blonde

Ok, ok, I was one once. The ‘pressure’ got to me too. It was all in the magazines and on TV, movies etc. It was ‘wrong’ to have your own hair colour.

I tell you what, I didn’t like being bleached blonde after a while, and nor did my hairdresser who moaned about my split ends and thinning hair which became ‘brassy’ over time.

For a time, it was ‘ok’ but as years went by, I recognised that people treated me as ‘less’ and I got patronised and I even had women being ‘jealous of me’. Men definitely changed and treated me as a woman that could be ‘dominated’ or ‘ignored’ my voice. At the time, I didn’t always realise this but over time I did.

It got to stage that I got sick of being ‘someone else’, ignored and patronised, and I didn’t want my hair, already thinning, being destroyed to bits. I now embrace a natural, shiny, healthy and authentic look, and I love it. My hair is mine, unique and it doesn’t look like everyone else’s. And, if I carried on putting this nuclear colouring, I would not have any hair left. When you get older, it is normal to have thinning hair, let’s not make this happen even quicker!

I was at a café today in Kent and I noticed that all the women had ‘bleached blonde’ bobs, like some kind of clones. I have never seen so many in one café. They looked unconfident. Would they go back to being brunette? Probably not. I suppose at the time, they thought the bleached blonde looked nice, it covers their natural hair and grays, but when you see everyone in your cafe friend group looking all the same, it is kind of weird. It is like stepping in some horror film actually.

They were clearly terrified of, dare we say it, looking older. It was weird, you could hardly tell them apart. Maybe they’re only friends with people who look like them? It seemed all of them felt pressure to have this clone bleached colour and hairstyle. Granted that bobs can be convenient, and I do like them. Maybe they wore bobs as their hair was too unhealthy to grow it longer? I know some people who have really, long, healthy silver hair.

The women were in their forties to sixties. It frightens me that I was once like them, thinking it was cool to be bleached blonde. Maybe they all bought Sainsburys ‘No 4’ box blonde? There must be so much pressure for these middle aged women to be blonde and ‘young looking’, so that perhaps their man doesn’t run off with a younger woman. Listen, you have chosen THE WRONG MAN! I wonder if they feel they are a ‘loser’ if they don’t colour their hair blonde? Some stay chemically bleached well into their OAP years. Catherine Denerve, seems to get away with it, somehow, but her hair must be completely wrecked. Maybe she has a blonde wig, like Barbara Windsor? As more and more women, get cancer, particularly breast cancer in middle age, and companies are secretive about what they really put in their hair colouring, you would think they would want to try and prevent early cancers?

Now I have decided to be an authentic, confident, woman and not give into chemical Blonde Pressure. It saves me money and time too. Ironically, do I have any bleached blonde friends, ha, no but I have a few independently, minded, chemically-free brunette and ‘other’ friends! I get more respect, people listen to me to more, in general, but I look ‘free thinking, confident and independent’ and not chained to the hairdresser for a bleached, blonde, unnatural, and that is the key, look. I have confidence, and the balls, to be myself.

Maggie Thatcher was bottle blonde, but then she was Tory, and you cannot be a ‘successful woman’, unless you are bleached Marilyn Monroe blonde? I wonder where she should be if she was an authentic, chemically- free, brunette?

My heroine is Boudicca, a feisty and powerful, natural red beauty, proud to be herself.

UK: I caught a backstabber, and how I dealt with her

Because of what I have gone through, I am pretty vigilant for these types of people. They picked the wrong person to backstab.

What I have learned about backstabbers is that they can be very passive aggressive, avoidant and hate exposure. They will also have their own ‘support network’ where they get ‘fuel or supply’ and some of them could be your ‘friends’ too, unknowingly.

This woman came into my life a few months ago, and immediately, just by looking at her, I knew she was going to be a problem. It was weird as I could tell by her clothes and her clothes ‘were the opposite to me’. Well, she was supersmart and phoney and I am pretty casual. Even if she wasn’t supersmart the fact that there is a big personality difference, could be a ‘sign’ in anyone’s books. There is a risk of personalities clashing. I felt that I ‘would be in trouble with her’ at some point. Some people don’t like people who are different. Furthermore, she was polite, however, more of a formal polite, she didn’t appear to be relaxed and herself, it was almost as if she could not be herself and authentic at all. My instincts told me ‘that something wasn’t right’ and I couldn’t quite pin it down.

She also kept quite clear from us right from the beginning, although when we did meet, it was me who started the conversations. She was ‘friendly’ but quite ‘guarded’. We always had this phoney friendliness and I never really ‘knew her’, but she always made me feel ‘uncomfortable’. Yes, if she knew I was a Citizen Journo, quite understandly she would feel like that! She kept very polite so as to ‘act properly’ in public.

A couple of months later, she came into the kitchen but didn’t say anything or smile. Once again, I felt as I didn’t exist.

On the same day, I heard a shouting match and with her backstabbling me to her friend. She didn’t know I had heard it, but I was very upset, as I had hoped she was an nice person, although I felt something uncomfortable about her from the moment I met her. Her words hurt. The fact that she was ‘friendly to me’ but backstabbing me was horrible. However, it confirmed what I had thought! in some ways, I am glad this happened, it was not me imagining things.

Now, this is where I had power! She didn’t know that I had heard her.That was great. The flying monkey she was bitching to, didn’t question things.Nothing was done or a few days.

I had to think about what I going to do. Backstabbers like to look good in front of their friends and they hate exposure. So, we decided to ‘open up things’ in a civil way by organising a grown up ‘team meeting’, including the flying monkey,, to discuss ‘any issues’ within the household, with other flatmates. House meetings are great way to air things in a ‘civil way’ and that probably scared her! The fact that she knew that we may have heard her. Something was up in her books but she didn’t know what.

We never did have the team meeting, due to complications, which was annoying, but we opened up ‘dialogue’ that there was a problem within the household as one of the flatmates, ie was very upset to hear someone from the household screaming about them and someone who had been nice to them too. Quite rightly we had to bring it up. The flying monkey, who was there, was shocked that I had heard their conversation and kept on apologising. The woman has not yet apologied and is keeping out of our way, probably very embarrassed, but now the place where she lives, shows about her behaviour. She has been exposed for what she is! The fact that she has not apologised herself, just makes things worse for everyone, including her!

We also added if there is a problem, for them to speak to us directly or at a meeting. We looked really good in the flying monkey’s eyes and he agreed, however, the damage has been done by both of them.

I am leaving their ‘patch’ for a few weeks so she can sort herself out and think about what she had done and if she cannot cope with the ‘exposure’ any longer, she will probably move! In the meantime, we will ‘wait for an apology’, and the longer we don’t have one, the worse the household tension will be. I think we have this backstabber cornered.

If you have experienced ‘catching backstabbers’, let us know how you dealt with them too?

Keep following for updates

Neatfreaks are ‘miserable’

I was brought up with ‘neatfreaks’ and it affected me so badly I became anxious and even more untidy.

I kind of ‘gave up’ with all the nagging, and all the things I am supposed to think of. Whatever I would do, would never be good enough to an obsessive neatfreak. Some of the stuff they think of could not even cross an ordinary person’s mind sometimes.

I hate being near people who are ‘neatfreaks’, and you will that you are being ‘watched like a hawk’ in the house all the time. Your home feels like a prison. Sometimes the person in the house, would only talk to you about tidying and cleaning. It was soul destroying being that in narrow, conversational environment. They even hoover in a way that is ‘fast and aggressive’, with the odd passive aggressive ‘tuts’ here and there.

I have a different attitude to them. I was quite relaxed and would tidy up when I was in the mood, had time or would put a little away as soon as possible. Needless to say that my relaxed attitude, made them go ballistic! Some of these ‘neatfreaks’ were cleaning even late at night. Some people literally DO clean up all day, for hours and hours.

I used to see my relatives spending all day cleaning. I thought too much of this was a complete waste of time and they were making themselves ill with the anxiety they brought on themselves. Some of neatfreak ideas caused arguments, not just with me, but with other people in the household too. I have met people who have divorced because of their controlling behaviour, so children suffer too. They were becoming so stressed by dirt and spare socks that they were becoming neurotic.

They often spend money on buying the most toxic chemicals out,and the kitchen cupboards are full of this nasty stuff, and you smell toxic vapour round the house. I am a Apple Cider Vinegar person, so it can be vinegary but at least it is not toxic and does a pretty good job at getting rid of dirt. Ironically, I have less ‘cleaning clutter’ in the house too.

Personally I prefer a bit of balance. It is important that stuff is cleared to avoid tripping over or it becoming a fire hazard, but today’s obsession is getting ridiculous. People are spending too much valuable time cleaning and tidying, that they are having no life and they are looking miserable and their sense of humour goes. I can’t understand that fridges etc have to be clean, and that is fine, but in the house, it can get well over the top. Endless telly ads about cleaning products just adds to the malaise, and pressure from society in general.

For me, their behaviour affected my own wellbeing. It made me feel depressed to be nagged constantly or humiliated by ‘having lectures’. I know they were right in some way, and I can understand that, but as I have said, the obsession with tidying and cleaning all the time , can affect one’s own mental health.

Some kids are unable to have pets because the parents hate dogs as they make the house ‘a mess’ and the kids lose out. Some of my own family was like that. Tidy people are very controlling and untidy people ‘just want a peaceful life’.

We are only on this earth a short time, and tidying and obsessively cleaning, is a waste of our time. For me, I really have to be away from ‘neatfreaks’, they can be miserable, negative and waste too much of their lives cleaning. Some of them have done ‘nothing’ in their lives, compared to some untidy people who would rather spend their time doing something of benefit, to others, say volunteer work, than spending all day cleaning, and possibly having a short life, due to the stress of tidying and cleaning the house all the time. We maybe untidy, but we can be happier, and more relaxed. Some of us like a bit of ‘stuff’ although when it becomes obsessive, like with some hoarders it can be a problem. Some of us suffer from depression or can’t see that well, so cleaning and tidying can be extra difficult.

The most important thing is to be happy, and if that means you have remove yourself from a neatfreak, do so! Don’t let them get you down. It is up to them if they want a miserable life, but you don’t have to!

Another link to a messy person’s blog you may enjoy

Domestic Abuse: How Neatfreaks affect family

LONDON: How I have never taken recreational drugs in my life.

I was brought up with a independent streak. Throughout my life, I just did my own thing. I had a strong sense of self and wanted to do what was right for me, not because someone told me to.

My parents never told me not to smoke or do drugs. I was very much self-policed. I am not Christian either, so I don’t have any religious dogma that stops me from taking drugs. I just care about what I am putting my body. We have only one body and we need to look after it.

I am a very visual person. What stopped me smoking for example, was that ‘it looked bad’ and I saw X-rays on Open University about the effects. The fact that you could die from a slow, agonising death too, and an early one at that. Yes, I was watching Open University at a young age. People who smoked did not look glamorous, I suppose they looked ‘rough’ and ‘dirty’. The same for alcohol. You saw a few alcoholics and they looked a right mess and out of control and friendless.

Now, with drugs, I was aware that they were bad at the time from the media, and I wasn’t interested in anything messing around with my brain. I think what really stopped me was a book I bought from a charity shop in Kent, about this woman who worked in Kowloon City, Hong Kong, with the criminals and drug addicts and dealers. There were photos of young people who looked really thin, spotty and ill and this was not a good look. So, the library book helped me see the effects of drug addiction from an outreach worker’s experience.

That was it for me, not a good look, and they all looked pretty miserable too. Then shortly afterwards the photos from Leah Betts who died taking drugs came along. She looked terrible too.

I never mixed with the druggie brigade at all, supposedly the ‘cool crowd, that drank, smoked and had babies at 15, which was another blessing. I lived in the countryside and had few opportunities to mix with people my age anyway. However, reading about drugs and seeing the photos in the charity shop book, was a real eye opener. I never saw the ‘fun’ side of drugs at all, which you see these days. It was like, ‘What fun side?’.

Even now I meet people my age who have taken drugs in the past, due to peer pressure, and they come up with ‘trip stories’, which are really boring to me, but because I have never tried, or wanted to try recreational drugs, I don’t miss anything I have never used and it has stood me in good stead.

Sometimes people can make me feel that I am ‘missing out’, but I am really happy not taking such drugs. My health and my brain cells are so important, particularly as I am getting older and I need all I can get. It doesn’t stop me from having fun at all, and nowadays there are plenty of drug and alcohol free rave style clubs popping up too, which look a lot of fun, without the aggro and sex attacks as people are so vulnerable at other clubs and festivals. I have also have a lot of good hobbies, that no drugs could compete against!

Oh, and finally, the ‘Just Say No’ Campaign they had years ago, DID WORK for me and I am glad that the Government is bringing it back again.

    Here’s a video you may like. It is a social experiment on Peer Pressure and Drugs.

Millwall Fans and Racism

As a Millwall Fan, we have to nip things in the bud when people do anti-social things within our group. At the end of the day, in order for Millwall Football Club to ‘grow’, be successful and boost income, they need to attract different people and allow a more inclusive fanbase. Not everyone at Millwall, is extreme right wing.

London is changing all the time, new people coming into Bermondsey, from all walks of life, so things need to change. The Club is expected to move, which means where will be another customer base.

I have seen today, on various social media forums that some Millwall fans have been racist. They proudly say they are Millwall fans on their social media pages and have some have BNP links.

Obviously, this applies to other football fans from other Clubs as well, but we have to expose racism in our own group. The law is on our side.

On social media platforms, I suggest we stand up to Trolls, from our own clubs. Let’s be the change.

London Libraries: Some People go there to Sleep

Several times this month, I have noticed adults (both men and women) have been sleeping in some Southwark Libraries.

Perhaps they are homeless and sleep during the day because it is so dangerous at night and they have nowhere to go. Others may not be homeless but they have been up all night. You can hear very loud snoring through out the library. They have been annoying other library users, and some have complained.

Sometimes library staff do take action and say that ‘the library is not a place to sleep’. Some sleepers are ‘serial library sleepers’ and have been caught before.

London: Pride in the Park & Black Pride


This was held in the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens, in Lambeth. It was a mix of a Picnic in the Park and Black Pride which was on the other side of the Park.

There were various stalls around and there was also a tent that had a series of talks on various subjects which I enjoyed.

There was a talk on Women, but the two Women presenters failed to turn up which was a bit disappointing. There was also a brief talk about Dr Who, and a black lesbian being in it. Even in the Asexual community, people talk about Dr Who and think Sherlock is Asexual. Dr Who seems to be a popular topic amongst gays and asexuals, some see the popular children’s programme as a ‘benchmark’ of modern society.

Crowds of people were there, and it was a good, friendly atmosphere. It was a nice place to have a festival and there were lots of trees around so we could escape from the heat. There was the usual LGBT music, which, for me was ok, but a bit too loud for me, and I couldn’t hear my friend speak for most of the event but still, it was good fun and some of the stalls were interesting, such as the LGBT history month one, and the one that had big cushions you could lounge around in. There were also medical ones like ones on HIV testing.

There was also a dog show afterwards. Not one of these proper ones, with agility and all that malarky, but more along the lines of the best dressed Camp Dog and what skills your dog could do. For example, two dogs had these skills – eating and just lying down! Everyone laughed.

One of the Camp Dogs, ‘Wan Chan’ being paraded at the Dog Show:




It was also good to see people in Black Pride, there were absolutely hundreds of people attending and getting along.

T-Shirt slogans spotted ‘Martha Luther QUEEN’ and badges with ‘Never Kissed a Tory’.

Thanks to the Met Police who helped make it safe and I am glad one of them took off their helmet because it was just too hot.

Review of #LondonPride2017 8th July

I watched the Parade from the sidelines along Regents Street and enjoyed seeing procession.

It was good to see different kinds of organisations getting involved, although it was very much dominated by large, impersonal, corporates like Tesco, British Airways, financial corporations and John Lewis. You rarely see them in smaller Prides. I didn’t see any rural businesses, or smaller businesses either. It appears to be more of a corporate ‘marketing ploy’ and also catered mostly for the urban population. Come on, Pride, where are the LGBT tractor drivers, the LGBT Gritters, the LGBT construction workers etc.

The Army, Royal Navy and the RAF were there which was good because they used to be so anti before, although even then I thought of it has a marketing ploy to get more fodder for the forces. The Coldstream Guards were there, still wearing their bearskins, on an extremely hot day.

I would like to see more types of organisations and clubs getting involved in LondonPride. Needs a bit of freshening up.

The Parade was smaller this year, but I think this was due to people having to register, but I think that is a good thing as it can make a bit a bit safer.

As an Asexual, I didn’t see any Asexual people in the corporate organisations involved. There was a distinct absence of diversity within these companies in that respect.

The Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN) were there as well as the Asexual Podcast team, Pieces of Ace.

Furthermore, I barely saw any disabled and wheelchair bound people and I saw virtually no elderly people. It is supposed to be inclusive, but it really isn’t enough. Perhaps carehomes and the like, are not providing trips to LGBT Pride, I don’t know. It just seems weird. The music is also catered for the much younger crowd. I don’t think Pride is really marketed or equipped for these people. London Pride has been going on for 50 years now, but it needs to cater for the older generation too as time goes on and our body falls apart. Even more seating for them would be helpful. I wasn’t given any survey by the organisers to provide them with any feedback.

I enjoyed the music despite this and the silly antics of those in the Parade, although it was really too hot and crowded to stay watching.

I did see a lone Christian man with a large cardboard with some homophobic comments and quoting the Bible. I just ignored him.

I went to Trafalgar Square and listened to the music and to Sadiq Khan droning on and on, it was good to see Peter Tatchell again. I didn’t see any Asexual speakers though.

I did notice that the LGBT brigade tends to ‘bring out the Scene people’, and according to the forums on social media, the Scene lot, can put off Non Scene gays and they refuse to go to Pride. In some ways, Pride has become ‘too sexual’ if that makes sense. One person I met said that the stuff in the Pride Magazine, didn’t apply to him. I would also add that there was nothing about Asexuality in the magazine either. Some Asexuals said that they were very unhappy about being ‘wiped off the PrideLondon posters.

Despite it being a very hot day, there was a lot of alcohol being sold, which was harmful to people’s health and increases anti social behaviour. However, there was a water fountain which people could use that was great. One blonde woman was so intoxicated that she was sick in Trafalgar Square, which was disgusting and I nearly got sprayed by it. However, generally people behaved really well and warm which was nice to see. Security was ok too.

Many people didn’t pick up their alocholic litter and loads of glass bottles were just left on the floor. There were officials who helped clear it up, but people should pick up their litter and it stops animals getting hurt too. I picked up my own litter.

Though there were dogs around, on a really hot day, the Event Organisers refused to supply any dog bowls, as ‘it was not their problem’. Next time I go to Pride, I will take my own dog bowl. I thought this attitude was poor. People forget to take dog bowls sometimes.

When I got home, I checked the news on social media, and you can see from the comments, that people who are gay are still having abuse in the 21st century, although generally on the Parade I didn’t see much of that other than the man with the cardboard.

REVIEW: 7/10 Generally a very good day, but needs some improvements.