Excellent tomato harvest and yummy tomatoes. As usual, it’s a race against time – we’ll see if they have time to ripen before the frosts arrive.

The parking garage of Uppsala Academic Hospital. (My brother and I have been attending meetings with doctors, nurses, social workers, etc etc to ensure that he gets more consistent and coherent care in the future.)

Shadows are lengthening. Autumn is coming, but unevenly. Birches are all still green, and cherry trees likewise, except for a very few red leaves. The tips of maples are just starting to turn orange.

Chestnut trees are all yellow and brown and have already lost many leaves. The chestnuts themselves are dropping like bombs in the city, making it almost dangerous to pass underneath, while here in Spånga they are mostly still hanging on.

Ingrid and her friend sewed plush toys.

They have a very different approach to organizing a crafts project than I do… There is stuff everywhere, scraps mixed with pieces they are working on and with unused material; pins and needles loose on the table and the floor. Everyone else stays far away.

We went geocaching in Ursvik. Cycled all the way there with Adrian on the tow bike; it worked great. I’m so glad I bought it.

Of the four caches we attempted, two turned out to be located up in trees. The first one was relatively easy, but did require Ingrid to climb onto my shoulders to get up to the first branch.

We spent a good while on the second one, but finally gave up. It was harder than the first one to even get started on – my shoulders were not high enough and Eric had to step in. First Ingrid climbed up to look for it, but turned back after having climbed to about 8 metres’ height. Then I tried and got to about 10 metres or so before coming back down, for reasons of security. Neither of us could even see the cache. Maybe we passed it; maybe it was still above us somewhere. I am miffed. We will have to go back there and spend more time on reconnaissance on the ground before starting to climb.

Still, a day we will all remember, and both Ingrid and I had fun climbing!

I like modern circus. I like Philip Glass. I don’t particularly like opera, but I’m willing to listen to it if I get circus and Philip Glass to compensate.

We saw Philip Glass’ opera Satyagraha at Folkoperan. They combined the opera with a circus performance by Cirkus Cirkör. A surprising combination that worked surprisingly well: the two complemented each other, and the combination never felt forced. Performances of minimalist music can benefit some kind of visual complement – I’m thinking of Koyaanisqatsi for example.

Satyagraha deals with the early life of Mahatma Gandhi and the beginnings of his theory of non-violent resistance. Each circus act fit into the story and illustrated each scene much more tangibly than the music could possibly do. Balancing on a tightrope to symbolize passage through an annoyed crowd. a teeterboard act to illustrate a battle, etc.

Even so the performance was relatively… vague. Not concrete. It consisted not so much of events from those years in Gandhi’s life, as interpretations of feelings and associations around those events.

I wonder how much sense the opera would even make on its own. Probably not much at all, given that it is in sanskrit. But then again I don’t suppose “sense” is what opera-goers want and expect from opera performances.

Threads, nets and knitting have been recurring themes in Cirkus Cirkör’s performances in recent years, and they were part of this performance as well. It sounds gimmicky but again it worked really well.

The final scene initially made no sense to me but made a strong impression. Six actors walked in a circle, taking turns to push a giant wheel, thereby winding rope on it. A seventh actor guided the rope. It went on for a long time. Combined with the music, which for this scene was particularly minimalistic, the effect was hypnotic. I thought it mostly symbolic. Only later did I connect this wheel to the spinning wheel on India’s flag, and learn that spinning was an important part of Gandhi’s later politics in India.

The opera on its own would probably not have been enough to keep me interested for 2+ hours, and the circus acts were not impressive enough to fill a whole evening either. But the two together made for an interesting and memorable performance.

A part of the decor for Satyagraha, suitably monochrome and minimalist.