I spent a little time over the weekend reading over this blog so far, and cringed at how negative and paranoid I seem! I guess you have no reason to believe me, but I promise I don’t usually spend my time obsessing about my life or past or relationship, much less whether or not people like me. If anything I’m more likely to be accused of floating through life with my head in the clouds! It’s been a rocky start to my new life, but really I think the problem is more that I underestimated how weird and hard and overwhelming everything would be, rather than it really has been all that terrible.
Either way, my last-week-in-July resolution is to, for this week at least, focus on the positive. I resolve to write only about the good, exciting, exhilarating parts of ex pat life and Stockholm… in fact, I resolve to only LIVE the good, exciting, exhilarating parts of ex pat life and Stockholm.
So: usefully given the resolution I just made, I’m happy to report that I’ve had a great weekend!
Friday night was date night with the Viking. He took me to a gorgeous little vegetarian restaurant that’s situated on a cliff near the apartment. We walked there hand in hand through the beautiful evening glow of the sun, and I felt the tension of the previous week completely dissipate and the talking of the previous couple of days do its magic. You know those whooshes of pure happiness you get sometimes, when you want to capture the moment and wrap it in a pretty box and save it for a rainy day? I got one of those and I suddenly flung my arms around him and hugged him and told him I loved him right there in the middle of the street, and he blushed. Did I tell you he blushes? He’s so chilled out and cool and Swedish, and also, so very blond, and every once in a while I make him blush and his cheeks and the tips of his ears and the back of his neck go pink and it makes me melt and want to eat him up at the same time.
The restaurant was so lovely, over looking the water. In one direction we could see the matchbox, brightly colored, crooked buildings that make up Gamla Stan (which means Old Town, it’s literally the oldest area of Stockholm); and directly opposite was the flashing lights and screaming teenagers of an amusement park called Gröna Lund. The zoomph of the rollercoaster and the squeals and shrieks provided a strange but excellent soundtrack to our dinner, as we kidded around and chatted softly about this and that.
Saturday he worked and the weather was beautiful, so I went to the little square I’ve talked about before, lay out in the sun and read and people watched. For some reason, watching families and groups of achingly fashionable friends all chatting away and laughing didn’t make me feel lonely for once; I felt relaxed and a part of the extended community, happy to enjoy the atmosphere in my own company. On Saturday evening I had this very weird, unlike-me notion to make cupcakes, and was actually pretty happy with how they came out, even if they wouldn’t win any awards for looks (I think something went screwy with the baking powder maybe, they rose in weird and wonderful shapes). I curled up on the couch with the freaky cupcakes and watched so-bad-it’s-just-what-I-wanted reality TV until the Viking came home.
Sunday was another amazing sunny day – every time I comment on how beautiful it’s been, the Viking says, “just wait for winter…” and I tell him he sounds like a character on Game of Thrones or the Lord of the Rings or something, “make haste my lady, for dark times are coming… “.
Today we took a little ferry across to the island of Djurgården (where the amusement park is) and walked around there and had lunch. Apparently some people do live on the island, but mostly it is parks and museums, and one giant outdoor museum called Skansen, which we talked about going to then decided it’s a full day outing for some other time. We dawdled along sunny pathways and the waterfront, had ice cream lazing on the grass, and paddled in the – surprisingly warm! – water. Of course this moron had to slip on the rocks and soak the skirt of her sundress and laugh so hard she nearly fell all the way in, but all in all a pretty perfect weekend…