December 27, 2012: Took two buses a few towns over to Lund and explored the old culture and beautiful city. Definitely worth another visit.
From our cozy little carriage house near Staffanstorp to the city of Lund wasn’t far, but with the bus, it seemed pretty far. In comparison to distance and transport at home, it wouldn’t be much more different than driving versus taking the bus from Northampton (Massachusetts) to Amherst. Our day started before sunrise as usual, but that’s not hard to do in Northern Europe during winter, and began with a ten-minute walk through the silent hamlet, we were staying in. The traditional stucco houses with clay tile roofs, enclosed by cute garden fences only 2-3′ tall, the little village was surrounded by fields for miles. Continue reading →
With no other real reason to get up, I decided to attempt a Christmas breakfast; I had secretly bought gluten-free pancake mix the day before with the hopes of conjuring home holiday spirit. Although it was nice to have something homey, the gluten-free blobs were extra tasteless without syrup or jam or home, so we made do with crunchy peanut butter, courtesy of Mrs. Fancy. The day wasn’t anything special, filled with hot chocolate, Christmas movies, relaxing, and a wonderful walk through the countryside before sunset around 3. The whole experience was surreal. We’d look at each other and say, “Can you believe we’re in Sweden? This is wild.” Continue reading →
Christmas Eve Day I got going early and rode the three kilometers through the beautiful countryside to the supermarket. It felt like Little House on the Prairie leaving Ashton home alone in a one-room cottage, while I ventured out into the unknown wild. It was about 45 degrees Fahrenheit, bright, high clouds, and everything was muddy; it was like an early April Sunday in New England. I wheeled the old bike out of the yard and through the gate with my messenger bag, navigating the oddly paved driveway that combined large flat rocks cemented two inches apart with small pea gravel strewn all over the place, and hopped on the bike. I teetered on the oversized bike, staring at the muddy dirt road and telling myself I had enough skill to stay on. I wasted no time as my pavement-pounding mentality set in- regardless of my winter boots, jeans and cross-over-commuter bike, I zoomed through the countryside of southern Sweden. Continue reading →
We got to our cottage in the dark cold and left early the next morning in the cold dark. Already in Sweden, we decided that it was worth it to take a four-hour high-speed train north to Stockholm; because, the chance of us coming back to anytime soon was slim. Drinking coffee at the Malmö train station, Ashton and I looked at each other and said, “What are we, nuts? Who are we going to Stockholm four hours away?!… Nah! It’s worth it.” And it was. It was the best way to see all of beautiful Sweden: the snowy countryside, evergreens, flat south giving way to rolling hills, all complete with falling snow. Continue reading →
Snowing and blowing in Hamburg, a Christmas trip wouldn’t be complete without a delay and running to catch your ride. I guess we Americans aren’t used to trains, because, unlike planes, you don’t have to arrive two hours before for security, check-in, and baggage check. So we were early, and in typical holiday travel fashion, our train was delayed. Continue reading →