Short-range travels

Looking out at Björkö in the Stockholm Archipelago from the beachfront picnic table at colleague Andrea’s summer house

Classes started here Aug 24, and to some degree that has given the impression of dropping onto a moving treadmill. However, we have been able to travel around a bit and discover some new places, as well as some social time.

A charming mini-cabin at colleague Andrea’s archipelago summer house. This island is accessible by transit so we were able to head out for a Saturday afternoon.

More than most places we’ve been, Sweden seems to have foods associated with particular seasons, days, and events. Some (like waffle day) are a bit weird, some (like semla) are nominally linked to christian protocol, but many linked to nature and the seasons and pre-christian traditions. August is the time for Crayfish parties, where folks luxuriate in the late summer harvest of crayfish. Linda hosted a distance-acknowledging crayfish party in her back garden.

We have been going through the steps to legitimize our residence permits and social insurance numbers, which takes more appointments and visits to government offices than you might think. Graham wisely discovered than if you are willing to travel a bit, the wait for appointments is not as long in the outskirts of the region. So, we made out first visit to Södertälje, spending all of 2 hours there before catching the train back home

When we lived in Gävle, one of our most frequent places to visit in Stockholm was Gamla Stan or ‘old town’. Since coming here we’ve been on lots of long walks by the lake and through the forest. Still, even though it is only about a 30 min walk away, we were here a month before we ventured down to Gamla Stan. It hasn’t changed in most respects (not much in hundreds of years), except that there were almost no people. These days it is really a tourist area, and during Corona-times there really aren’t many cruise ship tourists coming into the city. I’ve got it on my list to head down and support my favourite vegetarian restaurant (with outdoor dining options, bring a sweater and pick a sunny day!)

Seen around town: the delivery bike. There are massive pedal-powered mini-trucks that will help you move between apartments – there’s only so much you can pack into a semi-furnished 20 -sq-m place so a bike-truck is fine (and climate smart!)