Monday, October 02, 2006
Top 10 Interesting Sweden Things Not Interesting Enough for an Entire Blog Entry
10. There are not drinking fountains anywhere. I, of course, learned this the hard way, over and over again. When you visit me, bring your own water.
9. When I first learned of the possibility of this life adventure in Sweden, I had to make sure that I knew at least one city name in Sweden and I guessed "Stockholm?" Fortunately, I was correct. Another very important city in Sweden is one you've never heard of. It's called "Gothenburg" and it's on the west coast, the main shipping port for all of Scandinavia. You should be ashamed of your geographical ignorance. Thankfully, you have Linköpinglivin.
8. Roundabouts are a beautiful thing. How we on the west coast of the U.S. live without roundabouts and subways, I will never know...
7. No one reading this is unaware of my love for playing and following sports. While my attention to the American sports scene has hardly missed a beat (good 'ol internet-Go Dodgers!), my sports outlet in Linköping is the Linköping Lions Hockey Club. We're off to a bit of a slow start, but you too can follow their season at: www.linkopinghc.se
6. "Röd är röd!" Red is red. You may NOT turn right on a red light. Period. However, traffic lights do turn yellow before they turn green, which I take it to mean they want you to fire off the line as quickly as possible, so I comply...
5. The closest eatery to my apartment in Linköping is McDonalds, actually about a two minute walk. McDonalds are everywhere in Sweden, sigh. Okay, perhaps the occasional indulgence a fry or two or 80 gives one a sense of home, which I am not above.
4. The Swedish alphabet is exactly the same, except for three more letters at the end:
Å is pronounced "aw" as in raw
Ä is pronounced "ai" as in rain
Ö is pronounced "ir" as in girl
For a real fun time, we'll do accents someday...
3. Swedes love nature. Lakes, forests, rivers, endless meadows, canals and countryside (but not mountainous until you get way up north). Water and forests dominate the Swedish topography. There is a forest about a two minute jog from my apartment, which has a 5 km. wood-chipped trail for running, biking and walking. I love this trail and run it twice three times per week. So, I have established a routine of running 21 miles per week. This in combination with no longer living on an American campus with college dining halls at my fingertips has helped me lose 15 lbs. since I left Seattle in mid-June.
2. Some famous Swedes are Alfred Nobel (Nobel Prize(s) is awarded in Stockholm every December 10), Ingemar and Ingrid Bergman, Greta Garbo, Björn Borg, The Swedish Chef from the Muppets and Tiger Woods' wife, Elin Nordegren.
1. Garbage. You read that right, garbage. Virtually all residential garbage is thrown into handy chutes located on every apartment building level or a street corner of houses. The garbage is deposited, then promptly vacuum sucked underground across the city to the dump. The only garbage trucks you see in Sweden are commercial. Pretty cool, yes?
Sorry for the lack of pictures. I'm really trying. Google Blogger is just too powerful. Keep checking back for the exciting conclusion to Sean vs. Google Blogger. Until next week...