Last Wednesday, my parents -- now both fully retired and loving it -- drove us to O'Hare Airport, where we boarded flight 946 bound for Stockholm.
We had a mostly uneventful flight, though there was a little turbulence that caused me to grip on to David as though the end were near. He laughed, of course.
It was nice to have a small television screen in front of each of our seats, on which we could watch a movie (new and old releases alike), play a video or card game, or guess at some trivia. We watched Definitely, Maybe, which was cute and passed the time nicely.
Upon our arrival at Arlanda Airport, around 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, we got our tickets for the express train to Stockholm, which takes a swift 20 minutes -- much better and less expensive than the alternative: a 40-minute cab ride.
We did take a cab from the central train station in Stockholm to the apartment we were staying in, just so we were sure to get to the right place right off the bat. Thanks to our friends Derek and Carin, we had an adorable place to hang our hats for the week, and it was a short two-block walk from the train station. Very nice for making our way in to Stockholm each day.
After arriving at the apartment, we fresh-ened up and got our bearings before making our way to Stockholm and Gamla Stan (the old town).
Not really having any goal other than keeping ourselves awake until at least 9 p.m., we just began to walk. We walked through the winding, shop-filled streets of Gamla Stan, taking a few pictures here and there, and trying to find someplace to have a little lunch.
We saw many things we knew we'd see again later in the week, so we held off on photographing or stopping in to see them.
One thing I thought would be fun to do would be to see the Vasa Ship Museum, which I saw 15 years ago when I was last in Stockholm, on the island of Djurgården.
David was up for it so we made the walk over. It's a very long walk, which I hadn't remembered, but well worth it.
The Vasa was built in the early 1600s and sank upon its maiden voyage in 1623 -- before traveling one nautical mile. Beginning in the 1960s, she was salvaged, and the museum was begun in 1987. Work continues on the ship today.
After leaving the museum, we took a ferry back to downtown Stockholm and headed back to the apartment, stopping at a small pizza place in "our" neighborhood for a light dinner. We then called our parents to let them know we had arrived safely, and were in bed by 9.