Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Velcommen ar Sweden

Or whatever it is they say here, I must admit to a distressing lack of competence with spoken Swedish (not that my reading comprehension is great either but it's easier to guess when I can see what words look like. I can pick words out of conversations when I know what is going on, but hurdy gurdy bork potato glemmestraan?

It's so frustrating being basically monolingual (and knowing that if you look blankly at people they will give up and speak nearly perfect English). No Maltese person in their right mind would assume I am a local so the problem doesn't arise so I don't feel guilty, but more people here speak swedish than speak Maltese in Malta, and a lot more tall people with blue eyes speak Swedish than speak Maltese.

Everyone's obsessed with it being cold, and I didn't mind wearing trousers, and shoes this morning... too much. The office has a great view over the old town and the harbour and stuff - central Stockholm is quite a pretty city. It's also just nice to be out of Malta (it's a nice enough place to live but feels so small and backwards sometime) and out of the office down there - the one up here is physically nicer, and I'm not involved in any of the politics and stuff and people seem less angry / stressed).

I am not sure whether tonight will be spent at the hotel (I have a couple hours laptop battery and can probably arrange internet if I care enough), or if a friend will be available for dinner (if not I might have to eat alone, which I dislike at sit down places - maybe I should wander the streets in the dark looking for a kebab shop - the Swedes in Malta rate the kebabs here, but a lot of that is probably just Swedish arrogance.

I've got a nice long shopping list for people too, so that will eat my saturday I suspect - it's good in a way, will give me a mini-taste of living here rather than just tourist / business stuff.

Anyway, the office is boring me, so it's "home" time. Haven't done anything touristy yet, might not do much, even this weekend, we'll see how I feel.

Kebabs in Stockholm doesn't seem very Scandinavian! I hope you at least found a raw herring stall or something, I thought the Swedes invented the smorgasbord, or was that the Danes? Anyway we expect the review, with recipes!
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