Fifty six hours in Sweden

Sweden 2018

I was long overdue to see friends and family so I headed home to Sweden for a quick trip.

When I travel the trips starts at the airport. I arrived early and I arrived with a book  bought a while back but haven’t had time to start reading. Before I could get stuck in to my book I had to go through security and for some reason I always get picked to go through the body scanner. It doesn’t matter how far away it is and this time was no different. I know the drill and remembered one very early morning when I was selected. I was having a fat day and wanted to make sure they wouldn’t weigh me, never underestimate vanity (!), and a very lovely customs lady assured me, and showed me, that they do not weigh you, or measure your height. It was very reassuring and I have never complained again.

Now it was time for a good book and a nice glass of ..

a glass of wine

I had some afternoon tea, one of my favorite English traditions. 

British Airways Afternoon Tea

It was so nice I had to take a photo, the habit of photographing food is hard to shake.

Once you get above the clouds the sky is always beautifully blue and the clouds create a fascinating landscape.

Blue sky

I got off the plane, got my bag and saw my friend who had come to pick me up within 35 minutes from landing. 

I saw my friend about a year ago so there was a lot to catch up on. We stayed up until we were both yawning and had to go to sleep but felt we had covered a lot in a very short time. 

 

I finally got to meet her cats, she has two and her daughter has one but this little one came in to my room for a chat and a cuddle, it is very talkative and totally adorable. 

 

I got up early the following morning and my friend dropped me off about twelve hours after landing at Avenyn in Gothenburg. 

It was about five degrees colder than the UK and pouring down with icy rain. Saying that it is still home and I love the view. 

Avenyn, Göteborg, Sweden

 

I couldn’t stay in  the rain for too long, I didn’t have any water proof clothes or umbrella. I pulled my bag behind me I realized I wasn’t going to make it very far as my jacket was getting soaked. I did what you do in Gothenburg, I went in to a cafe. I had a couple of hours before meeting my next friend and I was watching the city come to life. 

Coffee from Espresso House, Gothenburg

 

There has been changes in Sweden since I left. Most banks don’t handle any cash and you have to make an appointment to even go there, and not to withdraw any cash. My bank only has two branches where you can actually withdraw cash and with the Swede’s love of waiting in line it is virtually a race whether you will get to the till before closing, ok perhaps that long but you have to have a lot of patience and time.

There is no point saving your money in the mattress, cash is not king – plastic rules. 

There are no post offices, and all employers have to offer free massage. One of my friends once was told off for only taking four weeks of summer holiday, five weeks is an acceptable minimum but six weeks is better! The longer I live abroad the more I can appreciate the benefits, even if from a distance.

 

 

My friend arrived, we had another coffee, did you know that Sweden is one of the top three coffee consuming nations in the world? After a proper coffee morning it was time for lunch and I knew where I wanted to go. 

I found a Gothenburg restaurant on Instagram, Made in China, they do Asian fusion foods that look simply delicious and I finally had the opportunity to go. 

 

 

Lunch in Sweden is an early affair and we managed to get the last seats! Phew! If you want a guaranteed table and haven’t booked be there at 11.30 am or 2 pm.

 

I ordered from the lunch menu but realized I will have to come back one evening. I had Chicken Ssam Jang buns, filled with green chilli, shredded gochugaru carrots and pickled red onion, served with sweet potato fries, delicious. 

chicken ssam jang bun, Made in China
Sweetpotato fried, Made in China

 

I couldn’t resist a bottle of Daredevil Bulldog People’s IPA from Gotlands Bryggeri. It was perfect with the food and if I had more time I would have had another one. 

 

Daredevil Bulldog People's IPA

 

It was time to say goodbye to my second friend in less than twenty four hours. 

 

I went straight to see a friend I haven’t seen for at least five years. So much has happened we talked pretty much non stop.

She cooked an absolutely delicious salmon with garlic, fresh basil, sweet chilli ginger and spices.

 

baked salmon

 

We did eventually go to sleep for a few hours but got up early for breakfast and talked some more. 

 

My friend and her family also has a cat and she is such a cutie. She was very shy and very curious. I once read that if humans had the same size eyes as cats in proportion to our skulls our eyes would be the size of tennis balls. I think it looks better on cats.

 

Cat with furry feet

 

It was eventually time to move on and forty four hours after landing I met up with a friend I hadn’t seen in three years.

We started with a coffee and moved on to some tacos as we were both hungry, food has been a theme throughout our friendship.

 

tacos

 

After lunch we went shopping, catching up and eventually talking about what to have for dinner. We decided not to go out but cook together instead. My friend loves sushi so we got the ingredients. 

 

 

Making sushi together is very social and we talked about everything and nothing. A few glasses of wine and lots of sushi later we eventually had to give in and go to bed. We decided to get up extra early the following morning to get some extra time together. No matter how much time we spend together we never stop talking. 

 

Sweden is still home but so much has changed. The only thing that will never change are the friendships, so close it feels like coming home every time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Comments
7 Responses to “Fifty six hours in Sweden”
  1. That kitty has a great little face!

  2. Ginger says:

    Wow – you manage to put a lot into two days! Thanks for sharing, especially the food looked amazing 🙂

    • petra08 says:

      hello! It was a bit hectic but so great to see everyone and well, food is such a big part of our lives 🙂 Happy 2019! x

  3. JoAnn says:

    My grandfather was born in Sweden before he emigrated to the US 🇸🇪

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