Sisters take care of each other. More beggars in Sweden. ABBA-Benny donates money to FI. Roaches take over Sweden.
Sisters take care of each other.
In a televised interview Crown Princess Victoria and Princess Madeleine talk about their close relationship. “Sure, we had nannies. But I think she (Victoria) felt the ultimate responsibility,” says Madeleine. As the oldest of the flock, Victoria has always helped take care of siblings. In the TV series, “Familjen Bernadotte” (The Bernadotte Family) she talks about growing up: “My parents were often away or busy, but they gave us a lot of attention when they were at home.” She says they always made sure to sit down with the children at dinnertime, even if they themselves had to have dinner elsewhere later. “I think Mamma and Pappa felt it was very important that we felt like a family,” Victoria continues. The nannies provided the Bernadotte children with a sense of security, too, but she herself took the role of biggest sister seriously. “Perhaps too seriously at times. I suppose I was a bit precocious.” Madeleine agrees: “She felt a deep responsibility for us. We always joke that I could read already when I started school, because she had played school with us so many times. She is a great big sister. She is very creative. She was very funny, she knew a lot of games and she made the greatest little huts you can imagine. She did everything she could for us.”
In the interview Victoria also talks about her time as engaged and the upcoming wedding, admitting to some bridal butterflies. “It’s great getting married, but I think most couples are a bit panicky about it.” It’s been an amazing time (the engagement) and it’s passed by so quickly. The support we’ve received from the Swedish people is wonderful, it has been touching, and we often think about it, Daniel and I.” What she has enjoyed most is the fact that she’s been able to share her work with Daniel. “It’s been so much fun to share everything, the two of us.” She is also looking forward to moving into the Haga Palace, both because of the wonderful environment, but also because her paternal grandparents, whom she never met, lived there. Living there brings her closer to them, she feels. Moreover Victoria talks about her interest in nature and her humor, traits she claims she’s inherited from the King. “And it’s hard for me to just sit still, another thing I got from him.” She has, she says, finally found a balance in life after her younger years when she felt too much pressure, pressure that led to a battle with anorexia. “I have found myself. And I realize that you don’t always have to know everything all the time.”
More beggars in Sweden.
Beggars used to be a rare, very rare, sight in Sweden. But recently they have been seen in increasing numbers, not the least in Stockholm. But who are they? Mainly citizens of other EU countries, it turns out. And according to Swedish police, the number has increased sharply over the past five years. “The trend is that it increases. And it is because we have new EU member countries where these people come from. It is about marginalized people living under difficult conditions," says Thord Modin, head of the intelligence division at the National Criminal Police. But despite the fact that begging is not illegal in Sweden, the police have increasingly begun to deport the beggars to their home countries - in most cases in Eastern Europe. In Stockholm, the police have deported about 30 persons per year. To date this year, the number is about 50. EU citizens are entitled to stay for three months in another EU country without permission. The police then use the Aliens Act to deport a beggar. This since the person is not considered to have sufficient resources or ability to support oneself in an honest manner. According to the police, some of the beggars are in real distress, but there is also begging that has been organized, sometimes by criminal elements with human trafficking involved.
ABBA-Benny donates money to FI.
“Money, money, money.” Remember the old ABBA-song? Benny Andersson invested some of his money in Gudrun Schyman in order to make it possible for her to make it into the EU parliament. And now he continues to support Schyman’s political ideas by donating SEK 300,000 ($38,981.06) to Feministiskt Initiativ (Feminist Initiative, a feminist political party in Sweden). Few of Sweden’s political parties, all of whom are now hard at work campaigning for the fall elections, can boast they have the help of an international star. But FI can. “I sympathize with Schyman’s unyielding fight for equality, so I decided to offer financial help for an ad that explains what you do when there are no pre-printed ballots available,” Andersson explained. Andersson and Schyman sometimes run into each other in their local Ica store (a Swedish chain of food stores), and Andersson has expressed his beliefs in Schyman earlier: “If we weren’t forced to live in a totally male-dominated world, then it would be much easier to solve all of our economical problems, all of our environmental problems, everything.” FI now hopes more people will follow the ABBA-star’s foot prints. “We’re very grateful to all our contributors and hope that more people will be inspired to give,” they write on their webpage.
Roaches take over Sweden.
It may sound like a horror movie, but it is true. Roaches are becoming more and more common in Sweden. Last year 600 cases were reported to the insurance company Trygg-Hansa, that’s more than double the number of five years ago. Roaches enter Sweden via luggage from abroad, when Swedish tourists return home after exotic vacations. And since Swedes travel more than they’ve ever done before, they carry more roaches home with them. Thus colonies of roaches are taking hold in Sweden. “They spread easily and they multiply very quickly,” says Håkan Franzén, Product Specialist at Trygg-Hansa. “Five females increase the colony with 200 new roaches every fifth week – that’s a lot.” It’s a myth that roaches like dirty, dingy places, however. On the contrary, they thrive in clean and organized homes, they especially like it when it’s humid and warm and where there’s a lot of food. They eat mostly food, but also leather, soap, and paper. Roaches aren’t just nasty to look at, they spread viruses and bacteria as well and they are very difficult to get rid of.
Cockroaches used to be an unknown phenomenon in Sweden, not so anymore. Swedish tourists unknowingly bring them back in their suitcases after vacations abroad.
Recently Crown Princess Victoria filled in for Princess Madeleine in Seattle during Sweden Week. But it isn't the first time big sister helps out. Says Madeleine in a televised interview: "She is a great big sister. She felt a deep responsibility for us."
ABBA's Benny Andersson believes in feminism. “If we weren’t forced to live in a totally male-dominated world, then it would be much easier to solve all of our economical problems, all of our environmental problems, everything," he once said. Therefore he has helped Gudrun Schyman (right) and her Feminist Initiativ in their political fight, by donating money.