Like the previous post said, we have now been in Sweden for nine months. A little background: I moved to Atlanta for a year in 1996, then I was back in Sweden fall 97. In January 1998, I went to college at Hawaii Pacific University in Honolulu, HI. I transferred to Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA in fall -99 and graduated in 2001. In 2003, I moved to Austria for work, but was recruited to Detroit, MI in 2004. In 2006 we moved to Graz, Austria where we stayed till April 2012.
So living in Sweden again is quite different I would say:
-It is cold. No shit, you say! I never understood the argument whenever I have said “I am cold” wherever I have lived people exclaim: what? You are from Sweden. Yes I am, and I am still cold!
-there is no post office here. That went out of business I think. You mail letters, drop off/pick up packages at your local grocery store.
-people bump into you all the time in the street without saying sorry. In fact they do not even realize they hit you with a bag or whatever.
-do not small talk to people you do not know. Think waiting rooms, bus, train, shop etc. People will take you for crazy.
-alcohol is still monopolized and can only be bought in certain stores with pretty strict hours. Hence all crazy Swedes getting drunk as skunks whenever abroad.
– if someone would have, lets say, their own schnapps brewery machine, that would be considered illegal. Just saying.
-Swedes are absolutely sun crazy. It can be -20c and the sun is out, people will sit out to tan. To our defense, the sun days are few… And in wintertime there is a lot of darkness as Sweden is so far north.
-Friday nights are holy and unless you spend it with your family eating Tacos followed by chips, you are most likely not Swedish.
-Fika, the famous coffee/cake break happens at least three times a day. Since September I drink coffee daily, before living in Sweden I had coffee once a year or so.
-there is no “ding-dong pizza” where we now live, that is how Vince explains pizza delivery, the door bell goes ding dong, you open and there is a pizza.
-the IKEA restaurant and the Sweden shop is a lot less attractive when you actually live in Sweden. Living abroad it seems so much more like a Mecca.
-if you are having friends spending the night, they always offer to bring their own sheet?!? (Wtf?)
– it rains a lot. And snows. And is wet. And foggy. And cold again.
– still, it feels good to be home!