It’s 3am and a symphony of snores here in the dorm room, so I thought I’d expand on yesterday’s post a little more. I’m really loving Sweden so far, and have been in this crazy state of excitement/nervousness/exhaustion nearly the whole time. Everything is so clean and beautiful – I keep trying to figure out with J where a city so giant puts its trash and homeless people! As we walk around, I find that we both get giddy over the huge historic buildings, the cobblestone alleys, and the cliche European postcard views of a waterway with a puffy clouded sky and beautiful bell tower. The nerves are really only based in our lack of knowledge of the language – it would have been nice if we studied as much as we promised ourselves we would because we both tend to freeze up with shopkeepers. I think we’ll be practicing a few key phrases over breakfast tomorrow. And I obviously touched on the exhaustion before, but it’s made my patience for taking pictures or stopping in random stores very small. If I sleep more after this post, tomorrow should be better.
The people have been a little different than I thought they’d be. Everyone seems to be an aggressive driver (my heart has leapt a couple times in the crosswalk), yet no one seems stressed about it – I think I only heard a car horn once or twice yesterday, certainly no one yelling. No one seems willing to make room while walking, so unless we want to run right into someone, we’ve been dodging pedestrians like it’s a video game. Is personal space an American thing? Everyone has been friendly but many seem a little impatient, perhaps not the biggest fans of tourists. We got an eyeroll when we thought we had to pay for beer in-flight and neither of us understand why that clerk didn’t give us back our 2 SEK in change.
I was pleasantly surprised with our food options on the flights. Though you have to pay for snacks on United, we were able to get some hummus on the way to Chicago – yay for healthier America!
On the Scandinavian Air flight, we received chana masala, salad, and fruit salad. We specifically asked for a vegan meal, and although it came with butter on the side, I enjoyed a very hearty, healthy, and tasty dinner. Not to mention, spicier than most Indian food in Portland, ha.
Breakfast was less of success (Greek yogurt and honey granola), but I was still full from dinner and just grateful for the orange juice and coffee. Oh btw, Swedish coffee is great everywhere, even the gas station.
I was really relieved to be fed so well on a 13 hour journey, and I’m less worried about traveling vegan in the future!