Good morning beautiful friends. I am back!!!! You might not have realized it but I have been gone. While my blog was more or less on automatic for two weeks I was very busy traveling in Europe for a lot of work and a bit of pleasure. (so please forgive me for not visiting any of you these last few weeks, I am still trying to catch up with my blog reading).
Yep another trip abroad, this time my destination was Sweden. And again the bigger part of my trip was all work and no play. I went on a study trip to Sweden to study their health care system, since ours is modeled after theirs.
This part of my trip was spent in Vasteras a nice town in the country side. The trip was very educational but also exhausting. The discussions started at the breakfast table and went on until well after diner. But I won’t bore you with my work travel tales. Let’s look at some beautiful Swedish country living.
saw heaps and heaps of these beautiful red wooden houses. I would have loved to peak inside them, and see if I could spot some of that white Scandinavian living in real life, but alas I had to be satisfied with the outdoor look, which was great too.
Can you imagine living in a picturesque street like that…..
Ah well my hotel wasn’t half bad either….
This hotel room gave me a new meaning to looking at the world from a different perspective. And yes I am not kidding this is really a hotel room you can rent for the night.
But it couldn’t accommodate our whole group so this is really my hotel…..
Lovely digs, don’t you think…..
Ok, I know this is a former palace, turned golf club, but we did have the authentic Swedish meat balls here for our farewell diner…
After a lot of visiting all kinds of health facilities and listening to a whole bunch of presentations my work ended at the airport of Stockholm, where I picked up my best friend in the whole wide world to have a long weekend of girl time in Sweden’s capital Stockholm.
I’d never been to Sweden before, and Stockholm wasn’t really high on my radar as an European city you just had to visit. But it is now. We both fell head over heals in love with this town.
Lovely old buildings, wonderful atmosphere, lot’s of water (Stockholm is built on a lot of small islands), good eating, even better shopping and all pretty much in a walking distance.
Right in front of our hotel we had this quiet little cemetery around this big old red church. A bit of tranquility in an otherwise very live and bustling city.
I think any city that has water in it, has a big thing going for it. Water just adds a whole new dimension to city life (can you imagine Paris without the Seine or San Francisco without the bay?), and Stockholm had lots of water.
We took a boat to drive us around the harbor and to the museum on the other side.
And while waiting for the boat we played model and photographer a bit. So funny how the wind picked up that strand of hair. And don’t you think that me squinting against the sun gives me a mysterious look? (and what is up with that angle of my food I have no idea, but heck I never said I was a model).
Anyway we were waiting for the boat to take us to the VASA museum.
Here you can see it. Can you guess what it is?
It is a museum built around a boat!!
A boat that is around 400 years old, was lifted out of Stockholm harbor in the sixties after lying there for 333 years. And yes if you have done the math you will realize it can’t have sailed long. And you’d be right, it took them about three years to built it and then it sailed for five minutes and 100 meters before it sank right there in the harbor. Oops construction error…..
It looked very impressive though, as if captain Jack Sparrow himself could just be standing on deck and order it to sail right out of there. But alas no Johnny Depp in sight, just a beautiful old boot with a tragic history.
Speaking of history, in the making….
We also visited the palace. Built according to the architectural standards of Versailles (but not as big). This palace is still being used and can be visited in between working sessions.
It was stunning in its beauty.
And just in case you thought we blogladies have come up with a new idea, slipcovering everything, think again.
Since so many of this old furniture is really still being used everything was covered in these wonderful slipcovers. Almost all in a stripy fabric. I saw this pink and white, and blue and white, and red and white and yellow and white. I think I photographed them all, but I guess you don’t need me to show you twenty pictures of Swedish royal slipcovers.
But I am sure you don’t want to miss this one:
Handsome guys in uniform….
(and there even was a woman too with the royal guards. Go Sweden Go!).
On our last day, us two girls, went swooning over beautiful clothes.
There happened to be a fashion exhibition in a museum in the basement of the palace.
Lot’s of beautiful dresses that we would still wear in a heartbeat.
The exhibition was placed in a bit of the palace museum that also housed the collection of historical costumes.
I don’t think I would want to wear the next one….
But it was very beautiful nonetheless…
Sweden has caught my heart, and I will definitely return to Stockholm.
I was happy to return home to My Love too though, who was slaving away for his exam he took this Saturday (keeping our fingers crossed for a good outcome). And now everything is back to normal and I am about to get on my bike and go to work.
So see you later alligator…… I am glad to be back!