Thursday, April 19, 2012

Mysterious Steps in Stockholm

Have you seen these footsteps in Stockholm?

I first discovered these mysterious footsteps outside my apartment almost a month ago. Then they were on the cobblestones down the street from my office. The ones pictured above appeared by the tunnelbana (metro) station in my neighborhood. And now they're all over Stockholm - coming from the lake, across bike paths, along sidewalks. 

My question is: why? And where did they come from? 

Perhaps building anticipation for some major event on the horizon? Or supporting the local AIK football team, whose colors are black and yellow? Trying to make a statement of sorts? Or is someone just bored?

Any info, please share tack!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Påsk i Riksgränsen

Riksgränsen=one of the most beautiful places in the world

My shins are still a bit sore from my ski boots, but it's a sore I don't want to go away. It reminds me of our incredible Easter holiday in the Arctic Circle, in a tiny place called Riksgränsen. Just next to the Swedish-Norwegian border, you can't get much further north than this beautiful oasis of winter wonder.

The tiny town of Riksgränsen, where only half a dozen people live all-year round, is not easily accessible - it's an 18-hour train ride from Stockholm (which turned into 22 hours for us). But that's exactly what makes it so great: it's off the beaten track.

just a few reindeer running around the slopes, totally normal

Imagine skiing in complete powder on a mountain of your own. That's how it felt, there were so few people. At least, when it was snowing. But even on the sunny days, it was easy to feel secluded on one of the many off-pistes.

We stayed in NS' aunt and uncle's charming cabin, where we had a stunning view of the mountains and the cozy warmth of a sauna to come home to after a full day on the slopes. It was heaven.

the whole crew, just before we said goodbye

And how nice it is to actually come home from a holiday feeling more healthy than when you left! Although now back at my office desk, the effects of skiing all day are slowly wearing away...

Thank you Syks for a fantastic Easter holiday! Jag saknar det redan och hoppas att komma tilbaka snart : )

the Swedish Easter tradition: feathers in trees

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Squeeze Risk

This may look like an April Fools' Day sign, but in fact, it is not,
and can be found on many elevators here in Sweden.

This "squeeze risk" comes from not having a door as part of the elevator, so you can reach your hand out and touch the wall as you go up or down. Unfortunately, this missing door can wreak havoc if you happen to have a large item, say a trash can, with you in the elevator. Don't become the victim of this unfortunate calamity - take the stairs!

On that note, I'll leave you with the Swedish April Fools' rhyme>

April April din dumma sill,
Jag kan lura dig vart jag vill!

which literally translates to>

April April you dumb herring,
I can trick you where I want!