For Straight Out Of the Camera Sunday:
Florist’s display of grave decorations.
Those who have been following my blogging for a few seasons probably know by now that in Sweden, we focus not so much on the trick-or-treating American kind of Halloween (even if a bit of that has crept into our culture as well), but more on All Saints’ Day, visiting family graves and lighting candles. (The link goes to a blog post from last year.) In spite of our society getting more and more secular, this is a tradition that has kept growing since my childhood.
This year my mum’s sister and her husband came by yesterday, a week before All Saints, and we went to visit my parents’ grave in a village churchard outside town (plus a few more on dad’s side of the family there), and then three more in a big cemetery in town.
It was a cold day but fine and not much wind (which is to prefer when one is supposed to light candles!) We were out in the afternoon before darkness fell but the oil candles made for this purpose (which also have a lid on them to protect from the weather) are supposed to burn for around 55 hours.
For my parents’ grave I bought a lantern and a new kind of fake (but very authentic-looking) candle that runs on batteries and that is supposed to have a built-in timer to make it shine for 5 hours and then go out for 19 hours, and then shine for 5 hours etc – until the batteries run out. I bought that on Friday, and turned it on at 5 pm, and I know it worked so far as to go off automatically at 10 pm. As for the rest I can only hope it works as intended because when I “planted” it in the churchyard the time was only around 3 pm.
▲ This is the fake candle (photo taken when I first lit it at home). It looks unbelievably like a real one except there’s no flame and it doesn’t get hot. I forgot to take a photo of the lantern but it was the same kind as these ▼
Today the lamp should have gone on at 4 pm, as during the night we turned our clocks back an hour from so called summer or daylight saving time to winter or “normal” time.
I’m not a huge fan of the daylight saving time, so I’m mostly glad to be back a bit more in tune with my body clock.
I think I managed to remember to change all my clocks either before I went to bed yesterday, or this morning. Ironically, the one I have most trouble with is a radio controlled clock on the wall in my study, which is supposed to take care of itself, but doesn’t. I had to take it down from the wall and bring it into the living room, take out the batteries and put them back in, and put it on a chair and leave it there for a while to find its bearings again… (It’s been like that before, so at least this time I knew what to try, and put it on the same chair that it seemed to prefer last time!) Now it’s once more “on track” and back up on the wall!