Jul 6, 2010

Actuals vs Planned

Aaaah yes! Variance analysis! A very well applied concept in my line of work and hence, I should have known, better than a lot of people actually, that things simply don't always turn out the way they were planned ;))

Such a promising day...... Over 30 degrees, sunshine, not a cloud to be seen, great friends with great moods, a "5-kamp" (which is basically being divided into teams and playing 5 games together....a Swedish classic if you will ;)) organized, neat booklets of Swedish drinking songs made by hand (by Emma! Thanks, they were so neat!!), picnic bags full of Swedish goodies and beverages AND a river Rhein that has finally reached swimmable temperatures. What could possibly go wrong??

Again.....coming back to my line of work. Forecasting! Now, here I should really be one of the specialists. So what is forecast by definition? "The process of making statements about events whose actual outcomes (typically) have not yet been observed." ....and yet, I chose to believe, without questioning or creating a back-up plan, the weather forecast that was online the day before. A forecast that, in my defence, to over 90% certainty promised those blue skies as described above.

So let's talk about actuals..... Everything was going exactly according to plan..... The pickled herring, new potatoes, "knackebrod", snaps, Swedish beer and jordgubbstarta had been consumed while songs and laughter loudly sounded in traditional dis-harmony and the first game, "Kubb", had been completed. Parts of the group went into town for a short break to watch Germany play Argentina to pieces (or was it really to take a break from the snaps? No one knows for sure....) and the rest of us were lazing in the sun and taking refreshing swims in the cool, turquoise Rhein.
Like heaven for any true Swede, celebrating "Midsommar".

Then the unthinkable happened!! At around 17:30-18, the sky opened up and out of what seemed to be absolutely nowhere, a flood of rain started falling down from the sky with such intensity that it literally hurt the skin (+ a thunderstorm!)! We had to grab whatever we could and make a run for it.........

OK so here is the sad part....the rain and thunder never seized that evening and neither of us had enough space in our homes to host all these happy, party-friendly Swedes. We had to simply let the anti-climax enter and surrender to the fact that sometimes, things really don't turn out the way you wanted them too......and go home and save whatever we could of foods and hang our clothes to dry.

Key learnings?? Always, ALWAYS have a back-up plan in place.
I must say though, it was an AMAZING afternoon!! Just a little bit too short....

Glass half-full perspectives:
- The "5-kamp" for next year is already done!!
- No hang-over on Sunday
- A lot of us still have a lot of Swedish Beverages in our fridges to enjoy this summer
- In the end, this was INDEED a traditional Swedish Midsommar in all its glory!! It rained! =))

Linda - Happy she wasn't flushed down the Rheinfall and that she at least got to celebrate Midsommar for a few, very precious hours ;)


  1. Tur att det är kräftskivedags snart... ;-)

  2. Haha! To me this sounds like a typical Swedish Midsummer where you suddenly desperately need to grab whatever you can and run for shelter... and after five minutes the rain has stopped and the sun is back again.... and once you and the food is outside again the rain starts and.... it's like tradition!!

  3. Emma: Absolut och da jaklar ska vi ha en back-up losning redo ;))

    Tanja: Hahahaaaa yes absolutely!! I wanted to add the "Abba sill reklam" movie here to explain what it really means, but it was nowhere to be found (or perhaps just disappearing in the multitude of ABBA videos??). But normally, in Sweden, your close to a house or shelter of some kind....this was kind of missed in our plan ;)

  4. Indeed, there was a strong rain and it came so fast ;-). It was a very nice afternoon though and I am looking forward to a Midsommar celebration in Sweden next year :).

  5. Me too Chris!!! I'm sure you'll love it nearly as much as I do ;)) xox

  6. Uhu Chris, there are a loooooot of swedish traditions to celebrate here in SH before next year's midsummer....


I read and treasure all your comments..... Thank you for taking the time! x