1st Journey: Stockholm
Longevity: February 28th-March 5th.
Location: I stayed near Duvbo in a big blue house in the suburbs which is occupied by five awesome 20-somethings.
One Word: "Lagom." This is the most Swedish of words that has no exact English translation and it gives insight into the Swedish psyche. It means something like "just the right amount," which contrasts to the American psyche of more is better.
Traveling alone makes you take pictures of yourself like these:
Creepiest bathroom lighting ever, or maybe I just couldn't translate how to turn the light on:
- Finding my way to the big, blue house with google-map instructions late at night, walking through the Swedish suburbs, and it looking like a fairy-tale.
- Staying in the big, blue house with the 20-somethings. They are renting this house while the owners are on a year sabbatical in America. Apparently, their son is a famous swedish pop-star!
- Fika (coffee break in Swedish): I love the cafe culture in Stockholm. There is always a side bar, with serve-yourself everything (which is more like America and not at all like France). So that made me happy. It was so cozy and a great break from the cold.
- Trivia night at a bar with other couchsurfers: Thankfully, it was about pop-culture trivia, my area of expertise (if I can actually claim any area of expertise). I met so many amazing people, especially the Russians, the German and the F'ing Canadian.--his words ,not mine.
- Couchsurfing meet-up Friday, discussing Nike Drake and other great music with the Swedes and the Belgians. Doing tongue-twisters in 3 languages (French, English, Swedish).
- Eating a Chocolate and Cheese-Cake Muffin that almost sent me into a sugar coma @ the Muffin Bakery with Chanti.
- Coffee and a bagel with Feather, a Chinese exchange student.
- Observing the ubiquitous, beautiful blonds with super-hip, yet uniform Swedish style.
- Observing and hearing about Swedish distant behavior and non-confrontational culture. Everyone avoided eye contact. No one stared at you (so refreshing after being in France!).
- The extremely friendly and polite customer service (again, so refreshing after being in France!).
- Hearing perfect English spoken with so many bizarre accents.
- Eating Swedish butter. I liked it so much I had to post the picture twice. The best butter one can buy in a supermarket.
- Going to Design Torget (as mentioned in Anthony Bourdain's episode) and drooling over all the cool little gadgets. Then going right next door to Granit and drooling over all the minimalistic yet stylish storage and organizational products.
Wow, so many words and pictures. Next post will be Copenhagen!