Category Archives: Sweden

Visit to Sweden

A frosty heritage fence at Hemlingby, taken by Graham
A frosty heritage fence at Hemlingby, taken by Graham

Graham found a great KLM flight deal to Europe with a free multi-day layover in Amsterdam, so we went to visit
Sweden! I did a little work at CBF and gave a seminar, but mostly it was a social visit catching up with our Sweden-buddies. We visited Divya and Shyam in Uppsala, and got to visit with Divya’s parents and their new baby, Sahana. We stayed with Hasse and Elja for some great meals and tour of sandviken, then visisted Jennie and Richard and their little girl. We also went to Julinvigning to see the fireworks and then visit Camilla’s new place for glogg afterwords.  It was a bit short as visits go, but so fun!

We went for a walk at Hogbo. Warm whether and no snow fall is not excuse for not skiing!
Warm whether and no snow fall is no excuse for not skiing!
Decorated table for a raclette night
Decorated table for a raclette night
The most massive gingerbread house - about 7 feet tall
The most massive gingerbread house – about 7 feet tall
Hasse and Elja's house is so cute and looks like an Ikea photo!
Hasse and Elja’s house is so cute and looks like an Ikea photo!
Elja's collection of antique linen prints which she gets from the thrift stores.  Mom and Bernie take note!
Elja’s collection of antique linen prints which she gets from the thrift stores. Mom and Bernie take note!
The piano corner with a moose head
The piano corner with a moose head

Christmas Research and a Birthday

I missed this when it happened, but my former supervisor Svend Erik was profile on Swedish National Radio on Christmas day.  You can check it out and listen to the report here.  Even if you don’t speak Swedish, I think the authority, expertise, and pondus shines through in the interview. 🙂

Svend Erik had a big birthday this week, and today may be resting up after having a party with lots of family and friends.  Happy Birthday SvE!

Lussekatt 2013

Glad Lucia!

Here are the results of this year’s lussekatt contest, including video.  

Groddan: described by owner as "stubborn and self-important".  Just as nice as he looks!
Groddan: described by owner as “stubborn and self-important”. Just as nice as he looks!

I am surprised about the winner, but I don’t know why since I have never picked a winner yet.  Perhaps my taste is not that Swedish after all (Hasse always seemed to pick the right ones). Groddan (“frog’) is a bit squashy-faced, but won the preliminary beauty contest at his house since he is the only cat with two eyes.  I think he looks like a feline Wilford Brimley,  which might be why he celebrated with a meat pizza and not a cream cake (you know, for die-bee-dus).

Maybe next year, Moses.
Maybe next year, Moses.

Dags att rösta på Årets Lussekatt!

Time to vote on the Decemebr 13th Luciadagen official cat!  The finalists are here.  You might also want to see previous winners and an explanation of this whole thing.  Ceasar is super cute, but for this year I like Moses:

He is cute and scratchy.
He is cute and scratchy.

I have a very poor record of picking the winning lussekatt, there`s no accounting for taste (smacken är som backen).  Vote for your favourite in the comments!

Lussekatt 2012

Ida looking fluffy out in the snow.

This year’s finalists are available online now! You can see the pictures and vote for the cutest kitty here.  My favourites are Stöddiga Sumpen, Herr Nilton, and Ida… which Graham points out are all skogkattar.  (Especially Stöddiga Sumpen, who is clearly hunting owls in the forest).

If you are a new reader, you can read more about lussekattar here,  here, and here, and  check out last year’s winner.

The Cold

Was I built to endure this kind of weather? Stockholm cold maybe, but Saskatoon cold is another thing entirely. They say ‘its a dry cold’ with the kind of humour coal miners use when they talk about cave-ins in the elevator. The cold and the wind are starting to set in now. It is totally tolerable at this moment, but I can’t shake the dread of the complete-fucking-uninhabitable-antarctic wasteland in store. 🙁
I’m generally not a country fan, but I like this mournful first aid kit song that starts off bitching about the weather.

Home away from home

The cozy new reading nook in the solarium

On my August trip to Sweden I was really fortunate to stay with Camilla in Valbo, about 10km from my old apartment. I have visited Camilla here a lot and she and Oskar and Vilma are really welcoming, so it really felt like home.  Looking back fondly!

The outdoor veranda, where we ate breakfast and fika
The awesome sauna, complete with acclimatizing couch.
The solarium’s dining table, location of many great meals.
LT’s guest cottage… another place to visit, maybe on the next trip.

Lillyhammer

While visiting Camilla I watched a really awesome Norwegian show called ‘Lillyhammer’. It is a new show staring one of the actors from Sopranos, extending his gangster role into new territory. The show is about a mobster who informs on his syndicate and is relocated by the witness protection plan to Norway. He takes NFI, struggles to fit in, and tries to operate mostly as he would have in New York. I am hoping to be able to download it… and I see from the youtube trailer it is on NetFlix.