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Author Archives: Reading Bliss

Walk For Freedom

Saturday I participated in a march for only the second time ever in my life, and it was one of the most powerful experiences I’ve had in a long time.

A21 (short for “Abolitionists in the 21st Century”) is a world-wide organisation which work against slavery and human trafficking. They work to rescue people from slavery, to support them afterwards (without the right support system 80% of former slaves are retrafficked) and with police in the vulnerable countries to help it from happening in the first place.

The statistics are sobering… there are more slaves now than at any other point in history (a staggering 40.3 million… and that’s just the ones they can prove. A more realistic estimate puts it at 125 million) with one person being sold into slavery every 30 seconds. And less than 1 in 10.000 of all traffickers are ever convicted.

Not many people are aware of the magnitude of the problem, however. So to spread awareness A21 arrange Walks For Freedom around the globe. This weekend we had more than 600 walks in more than 50 countries. It’s the fourth annual walk, and fortunately this year I was able to participate.

It was a heartbreaking, poignant, amazing experience. I’m so glad I went. I wanted to cry every step of the way.

We met up at 10am at the National Museum to hear the speech given by Philip (the manager of the Danish office of A21) and to get our T-shirts and our bandanas. To represent the fact that we were walking for real people, we would all be wearing bandanas with names written on them over our mouths – we were speaking out for those who couldn’t speak out for themselves. As we were supposed to wear all black otherwise, I’d managed to meet up with another woman at the trainstation who was obviously heading the same direction. We struck up a conversation and really clicked, so we decided to do the walk together. (And yes, I added her on FaceBook afterwards – it would just be too weird to share such an incredibly intense experience, and then never see each other again!).

At 11:45am we lined up outside the musem, and started walking, single-file, through the pedestrian streets of Copenhagen. Phil later told me that we’d been more than 320 people… meaning we probably stretched out 150-200 meters! Being in the middle of it, it was hard to tell, but every time we turned a corner, I could see the long snake of people in black, with yellow bandanas tied over their mouths, stretch out for ages in either direction. People we met also kept commenting “wow, they just keep coming!”.


It was, of course, a completely silent march for most of us, but A21 staff and volunteers were walking with us to hand out fliers and talk to people around us. The reception was incredible. Most people actually sought out the fliers themselves, and had long’ish conversations with the people handing them out, resulting in a really positive and approchable vibe. Because there were so many of us, we were very careful about being observant and letting people through when they needed to pass us, and one woman who was there with two young girls stopped to say, “I think it’s wonderful that you’re doing this”.

While walking, we could listen to the podcast A21 had provided, with the full stories of the three people whose names we were wearing. One of those was a girl of just 4 years old who’d been sold into the sex industry by her grandparents and step-father. Heartbreaking.

The match ended an hour later, back at the National museum, where we all pulled off our mouth gags and threw them into the air, to celebrate that Ivan, Eve and Amy had been rescued. They were free. And every day – thanks to organisations like A21 and others – more are following them.

My legs and back were aching like crazy for the rest of the day, but I am SO glad I went. What an amazing experience.

#walkforfreedom

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Posted by on October 16, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Podcast 5 and 6 – Two BookTube Videos

Social Media Book Tag

(I did MySpace twice – the first was supposed to have been tumblr instead)

Dewey’s 24-hour Read-a-Thon

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Podcast 4 – Falling Down the Rabbit Hole

My apologies for the horrible light. I don’t know what happened there.

On the Needles:
Terra Linda by Romi Hill
Sleeves by Martina Behm
Puzzle Pieces by Megan Ellinger
Sock Yarn Blanket by Shelly Kang

Off the needles
Vanilla Socks
Tiny Minion by Kelly Vu

Between the Pages
Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

 
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Posted by on August 21, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Podcast 3: Christmas in July

On the Needles:
– Elfe by Astrid Schramm. Knit with Fiber Optics Yarn in the Dusty Plum to Olive colourway on size 4.0mm needles.
– Braided Swirl Socks by Emily Wood (testknit). Knit with Lana Grossa Meilenweit on size 2.25mm needles.
– Terra Linda Cardigan by Romi Hill. Knit with Drops Merino Extra Fine (in this case talking about quality and not weight!) on size 6.0mm needles.

Off the Needles:
– Wombat blanket by Paula Berman. Knit with Marks and Kattens Nissegarn on size 8.0mm needles.
– Monkey Socks by Cookie A. – the No Purl version as recommended by CraftyPancakes and with a Fish-Lips-Kiss heel. Knit with Fyberspates Vivacious 4ply on size 2.5mm needles.
– 4 ornaments for the Christmas in July craft-along. Two were Christmas Baubles by Mona Smith. The other two were made up by myself. Knit with Lammy Yarns Lurex on size 3.0mm needles.

Coming Up
– Sleeves by Martina Behm.
– More ornaments

Between the Pages:
– Written in My Own Heart’s Blood by Diana Gabaldon
– Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
– Witches on Parole by Debora Geary

Just Finished:
– Heads in Beds by Jacob Tomsky

Events
I participate in the Christmas in July CAL hosted by the Just One More Row podcast and the Year of Projects challenge on Ravelry.

 
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Posted by on July 7, 2014 in Uncategorized

 
Video

Podcast 2 – Start-itis

In which I have startitis and want to knit all the things.

Glenn Cooper’s “The Keepers of the LIbrary” has also been published as “The Librarians”

And it’s called NaKniSweMo! Perhaps one of these days I’ll remember!

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2013 in Uncategorized

 
Video

Podcast 1 – Read-a-thon

Welcome to my very first video podcast! I had lots of fun making this, so hope you’ll enjoy watching it.

Made a few mistakes in filming… the sweater for NaKniSweaMo (or NaSweaKniMo) should be 50,000 stitches of course – not just 5,000.
Also the savoury fingering is 400yards per 100grams… not 100 meters.

 
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Posted by on October 12, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Managing your Kindle Collections

I love my Kindle. I do not love its way of handling collections. It’s a hassle to organize books into collections, and I like having my books organized, so just having all of them in the “root” of my Kindle wasn’t going to work for me. On previous ereaders it was possible to create folders while having the ereader connected to my computer, and organize the files that way. The Kindle didn’t work that way. Besides, collections are more like tags than folders, as each book can be assigned to more than one collection.

Fortunately there are various programs out there that help you manage your Kindle collections. I’ve tried out three of them and will give a brief (or not so brief 😉 ) review of each.

Kindle Collection Manager
This was the first one I found. It’s free and does the job it was made for. It’s main disadvantage is that it doesn’t visually show which books have been added to collections, so if you’re looking at the main overview (“all books”), you have to remember how far you’ve come and which books you’ve already sorted.

Kindle collection for Calibre
I thought this would be perfect! A plugin for Calibre to keep my books organized, what could go wrong? Quite a bit unfortunately, and this turned out to be the least useful manager of the lot. In fact, it ended up undoing quite a lot of the sorting I’d done.

The problem arises if you have books on your Kindle that aren’t in Calibre (which I do) and want both types of books to be in the same collections (which I did). Calibre overwrites the collections on your Kindle, so rather than just adding extra books, it deleted the original collection and added only books from Calibre to the new collection – leaving me with hundreds of books no longer sorted :-/

As an additional hassle, the plugin doesn’t seem to be able to handle books in multiple collections. Instead it creates a new collection that is a concatenation of the two original ones (e.g. “Currently reading, fantasy”). I quickly stopped using that one.

Kindlean
Last, but definitely not least. Kindlean is so far without a doubt the best collection manager I’ve found. It’s free for the first 100 books, if you have more than that (and let’s face it, who doesn’t?) it costs US$19.95. I’ve found it to be well worth the price though!

Kindlean offers a nice-looking interface that allows you to edit the meta data on books as well as adding the books to one or multiple collections (either by drag-and-drop or by editing the meta data). So far I’ve encountered a few books where I couldn’t edit the meta data (I got either an “UNKNOWN” error or the ever popular “Object reference not set to an instance of an object” error which all programmers know to hate), but out of 475 books I think I encountered 5 of those, so I’m assuming corrupt books rather than an actual bug in the program (appart from usability issues anyway 😉 )

Of the three, I would recommend Kindlean as the best program, but the two others do have the advantage of being free, and can be equally helpful once you’re aware of their limitations.

If you know of any other collection managers, I’d love to hear of them 🙂

 
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Posted by on August 20, 2012 in Reading