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Home July 9, 2007

Posted by thebigswede in Uncategorized.

Wouldn’t you believe my luck. Travel, in theory, seems like an easy enough endeavor. You take your things, board a plane and it takes you from point A to point B. In reality this is never the case. Why do bad things have to happen to good travelers? Sigh. Not one, not two, but all three of my flights from Stockholm, London and Vancouver respectively were delayed. I got no sleep during my 16 hour layover in Heathrow. Only one of my bags made it out of London. The other bag is still sitting somewhere thousands of miles away as I write this, so the nice people at British Air tell me. I had the distinct pleasure and honor of sitting next to a 400 lb Samoan beast who seemed to think the seats beside him were reserved for his massive, b.o. reeking arms. I almost prayed for a mid-air collision or something to end the suffering, after 9 hours in the air. The nice people at the Vancouver customs office decided to detain my bottle of Mintu because apparently Finish peppermint liqueur is a threat to national security. Whatever. Oh, and we had a flat tire on the runway leaving from Vancouver, just minutes before takeoff. That tacked on an additional 3 hour delay to the hour we were delayed already. The cargo I shipped out of Stockholm is finally on its way to Seattle today, 5 days later then what the company promised. I could go on but you get the point. That said, it feels so good to be home. It is, however, quite shocking. Americans are a breed all their own. Loud, proud and conservative, the culture of America is a free-for-all melting pot that can’t help but ruffle anyone with European sensibilities. Not to mention folks here have no concept of how to dress themselves! Wouldn’t survive 5 minutes in Stockholm. I guess this isn’t exactly shocking news to anyone, but still its shocking to see on a day-to-day basis. People around here smile when they walk down the street. They may even wave to you in passing or even say hello and strike up a conversation. Coming from a repressive regime of unspoken social “dos and don’ts” in Sweden, this sudden freedom and friendliness is almost overwhelming. Every once in a while I pinch myself just to make sure this isn’t all a dream.

The last few days have been filled with reunion after reunion. Friends who I just assumed would forget about me are calling to get together and catch up. I had this picture in my head of how different things would be when I got home and how much things would change. It turns out that nothing has changed at all. Sure the house they are building next door obstructs my view of the lake (fy fan!) and yes a few people have moved around but Seattle is more or less how I left it nearly a year ago. I love this city so much. The weather is clear, warm, sunny and when you set your eyes on Mt. Rainer, or on the city-scape from Gasworks Park, it simply sends chills down your spine. Starbucks is back, good Asian food is back, my piano is back, the lake is back and nearly everything feels right in the universe. Medical school applications are hanging over my head like a 10-ton gorilla threatening to crush me into oblivion. They are my first order of business. However I am also actively seeking out a new apartment, a part-time job and involvement in my beloved church. Sweden, while worth every penny, was a very expensive year and its time to replenish the coffers. More on that to come. I should get going and back to work straightening out my life but rest assured more updates are on the way. I leave you with a picture of my best two buds, Mark and Joe, with whom I have spent many of these last days with.



1. Mela - July 9, 2007

Hej Big Swede,
good to see that you are back in Seattle safe and sound and that you are spending such a great time with your good old friends 🙂 ! Miss you here in Sweden – come to Germany soon! Can´t wait to drink good German beer with you on our vast veranda…
PS: “Wouldn’t survive 5 minutes in Stockholm” – incredibly funny 🙂 !

2. Brendan - July 10, 2007

Welcome home, traveler. I’d give you a call if I had your phone number… maybe I’ll go check and see if you put it up on Facebook.

3. marcovinicio - July 10, 2007

I want to drink good German beer with you and Mela on her vast veranda too….

What’s really funny is that the comment you made about Americans, and their tendencies et al–you’re back to one of the most EU type cities here–Can you imagine if you came back to Houston or something? LOL I get a big kick out of that idea.

4. Mela - July 10, 2007

Hej Mark,
you´re always welcome to join – That´s understood 🙂 !

5. J.Skaff - July 13, 2007

nice returning home blog entry, but i look like such a douche in that picture…

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