(Video source: Victor Ehnbom)
neighborhoods draped in traditional Christmas lights • strawberry cheesecake at Ikea • a stunning view of lake Vättern • well-dressed men • tacos on New Year’s Eve • so much snow upon landing at Stockholm Skavsta • my friend’s homemade apple cake with apricot jam • gravel on icy roads • free wi-fi on Swebus buses • total dark at 3pm • chicken tikka masala at a friend’s new Indian restaurant • skiing at night • a guy from Uzbekistan who spent sixteen years of his life studying German • orange chocolate ice cream • small sailboats near the pier at dusk • discussing Russian movies from the 70s • fika, fike, fika • two former flatmates now doing their PhDs • carrot cake at Wayne’s Coffee • Hej! • familiar streets filled with memories of a semester abroad and many visits since
My trip to Sweden was absolutely wonderful, and I couldn’t imagine a better way to ring in 2013. I hope your start into the new year was just as lovely!
I’m in Sweden! WHAT. Hello love, I have missed you so! The moment I saw the endless forests and countless lakes and all the snow as the plane dipped through the clouds, I got teary-eyed. Stepping off the plane into the cold, clean air did the rest. This feels like home. It has for a while, and it most certainly does right now. I’m sitting at the airport as I type this, waiting for the long-distance bus that will take me to my final destination… There’s sports news on one of the TVs, and naturally it’s all skiing and ice hockey. And the weather map is, well, first of all, of Sweden – I mean, OF COURSE it is, but it makes me so happy – and the forecast’s all cold and snowy, too.
This country, you guys. I don’t know. I don’t know how I wasn’t born here. I love how reserved but kind and helpful the people are, I love the language, I love the typical Swedish pastries you can get on every corner.
Right now, I don’t know yet what it’s going to be like to see my friends again, whether we’ll just be bored, whether I’ll have to sleep on the floor and won’t be able to. But it’s already been worth it: all the money, all the organizational pitfalls, the distance traveled – everything for this moment of recognition, of feeling like I belong here.
PS – Update now that I’m at my friend’s: Her place is so perfect for New Year’s fireworks with a view over the lake, and the entire neighborhood is still decorated in tasteful Christmas lights, and I have a comfy place to sleep, and we have already made some lovely plans. THIS YEAR COULD NOT POSSIBLY END ON A BETTER NOTE.
I am looking at this photo taken in Bankeryd, just outside Jönköping, and I am listening to Portishead and The Civil Wars and Mando Diao’s new Swedish album, and I so badly want to just say fuck it and book a flight to Sweden; escape the dumb, forced who-can-party-hardest bullshit of New Year’s and hide away in sleepy Jönköping until it’s 2013.
(Photo source: /jkpg on Instagram)
I hope you are all having a lovely Sunday! I’m spending mine dreaming about Stockholm. The cold wind sweeping across the water. The peaceful Sunday silence in the streets. The cozy little cafés at the core of the city, smelling like cinnamon and coffee…
I spent a week in Sweden’s capital in September – many more pictures are posted in the Stockholm tag; these are the last ones – and have been under its spell ever since. It’s such a gorgeous, wonderful place and I can’t wait to go back. I’ll tell you all about my plans to move to Sweden one day in an upcoming post!
Do you have a favorite city?
International Food Market
at Sergels torg in Stockholm – taken September 3, 2012
MS EUROPA in Stockholm
taken on September 4, 2012
Luxury cruise ship MS EUROPA was maneuvering around the inner waterways of Stockholm when I sat at Skeppsbrokajen one morning, with my feet dangling over the water, seagulls keeping me company.
taken from onboard one of the Djurgården ferries