For as grey and dark as the Fall has been, December does seem a little nicer just as all the Swedes promised it would be. It is still getting darker (sunset at about 2:30), but December usually brings snow, which helps reflect the light and makes everything look ‘cleaner’ and less grey. December also brings advent and the adventsljus (Christmas lights.)
We don’t have any snow in Gävle, but we have Christmas lights in full force. There are lots of lights along the pedestrian marketway, and of course on Sunday is the ‘opening ceremony’ for the Gävleboken. We will of course post some pictures of that as well. Outdoor Christmas lights are not so common in town where there are mostly apartments, but almost every window has adventljusstakar (a pyramid of electric advent ‘candles’) or stjärnalampa (Christmas star lights). This is part of the seasonal celebration, and reminds me of my mom’s tradition of putting a candle in the window on Christmas.
Putting lights in your windows help brightens everyone’s day as you can see them from the inside and the outside, so to be good citizens, we have a couple of stjärnalampar as well. One we got from Clas Ohlsen, the ubiquitous and omnipotent Swedish hardware/houseware store, and one was a gift from our Canadian friend Jennie who was visiting. Thanks Jennie!