Sweden Day 1 was actually a have breakfast at the sea, drive to Copenhagen, fly to Stockholm, cab it to the hotel, unpack, go get dinner, and go to bed kind of day.
We were staying at the Hotel Rival, owned by Benny Andersson of Abba, located in Sodermalm on a quiet and delightful park.
It was raining as we walked towards the second-hand and ceramics shops the suburb is known for, and we had so much fun window shopping. Then we had dinner at Restaurant Pelikan. We strolled home and sat in the park for a while before retiring to the room. One feature of the hotel is a huge video library so every night we watched a movie just before we fell asleep. We really enjoyed the hotel and it had one of my favorite features–the lights come on as you open the closet doors. Why can’t that happen at my house?
John and I are so excited to be celebrating our 15th consecutive year of visiting a new country together. We spent all weekend making our last-minute preparations and packing up the suitcases. It’s going to be a little cold in Denmark and Sweden–we’re looking at 60/70 in Copenhagen and 50/70 in Stockholm. So we made sure to pack pants, socks, long sleeves, and jackets.
How did we decide on Denmark and Sweden? Well, coming off the high of hiking Kilimanjaro last year, we had started to research details on climbing Mt. Elbrus and had corresponded with a guide and were looking at flights and dates. But then I got this FB message from our friend Kathryn:
I know it’s a long shot, but please think about joining us in Denmark next July because we will be celebrating Ole’s 50th birthday at some weird Scandinavian Long House/Compound on a remote Danish island (Lolland). Nothing but a cold ocean, 40 of your closest drunk Danish friends, pickled herring, and…well, not much else. Could be interesting…think about it! You can stay for free but the plane ticket is a bitch!
Now really. How does one turn down an offer like that! I’ve been wanting to go to Denmark with Kathryn and Ole, well, since I met them about 15 years ago. And I haven’t been to Copenhagen since 1991 but I loved it so much I’ve always wanted to go back and do it properly. I think Kathryn might have been a bit surprised when I wrote back 30 minutes after she sent her message and told her we were a go.
Since I’ve already been to Denmark, we needed to add the “new” country so we decided to spend a week in Stockholm, where John’s going to run an Ultra Marathon. I am going to run a few laps of it with him. We’ll also visit the Vasa museum, do an archipelago tour, and take a day trip to Uppsala. We’re really looking forward to the trip.