Sweden: Day three

It was the Fourth of July, and we were in Sweden. If David hadn't reminded me of our own country's holiday, I would have forgotten completely.

We pulled together a duffel bag of clothes for our two-day trip to Jönköping, Ulricehamn, and Växjö, and made our way to Södermalm, where our rental car awaited us. However, we didn't know exactly how to get to Avis on foot from the train station. A nice young woman attempted to give us directions, in English no less, but we ended up going too far out of our way, wandering for a good half hour. I finally asked a newspaper-store owner how to get where we needed to be, in Swedish no less, and actually understood his directions. We were there in a matter of ten minutes.

The men at Avis got us to our car, which ended up being manual, so David asked that I start out driving. Initially nervous about driving in a foreign country, my fears were quickly alleviated, thanks to David's amazing navigation skills.

We enjoyed our three and a half-hour trip to Jönköping, taking in the beautiful farmland and fields full of bright yellow flowers. As we drew nearer to the city, the waters of Lake Vättern came into view. Unfortunately, there were too many trees in the way of our passenger's window to get a good shot from the moving car.

We did, however, make a pitstop in Gränna, the home of polkagris (peppermint candy). Knowing our nieces and nephews would enjoy the sweet treat, we picked up a stick for each of them, as well as one for David and a black licorice lollipop for me.

They were just finishing up making a batch, so we took some pictures of that, too:

We then drove to Södra Vätterbygdens Folkhögskola (SVF), where I studied 15 years ago. It was good to be back on the campus, which looked pretty much just as it did then. Shortly after arriving, though, we had to make our way to Ulricehamn to meet my relatives.

Anne-Louise met us in downtown Ulricehamn and drove us to a park overlooking Lake Ätran . . .

. . . and then we followed her to their farm for dinner with her mother, Ulla-May, and brother, Bengtson.

The farm at Varnum

The American flag was flown in our honor

The main homestead, built in the late 1600s

With Bengtson and Anne-Louise

David with Ulla-May and Anne-Louise

After a delicious homemade dinner of two quiche-like meat-and-cheese dishes, salad, and rolls, we were on our way back to Jönköping, talking about what the next day would hold for us.


Melissa said...

JEALOUS! SO HAPPY FOR YOU! JEALOUS! SO HAPPY FOR YOU! This is the running discourse in my mind...sigh. :)

simplicity said...

I am loving these Sweden updates. So fun. Keep the pictures coming too! I'm sure you have a million!

Stacy & Jonathan said...

So fun! I remember that drive from Stockholm- it is beautiful! I visited friends at SVF in 2001. Loved Sweden- I have always felt like it is "close to home" even though I am not Swedish AT ALL! The Swedes are very different from my boisterous Italian roots :) I just know so many people who are Swedish I kind of feel like I am part Swedish- and then I ended up a Peterson, go figure, right? :) Looking forward to your posts......