Next stop, Sweden. We’re going to spend about 18 days up here in Scandinavia in part to, well, see Sweden, but also to see our friends Lars & Shideh up in their mountain home.Our first stop is in Malmö, Sweden’s third-largest city, down on the southern tip of the country. To get there we flew to Copenhagen and then took a train across the Öresund Strait that separates Denmark from Sweden. Strange but true, a train across the sea. Even stranger … we were prepared for the worst at the Naples airport. We’ve never before flown into or out of Naples, but let’s just say that Italian infrastructure isn’t always what it should be, and Italian efficiency is never what it should be. We were leery.
To our enormous surprise, though, it was about the easiest check-in ever. We’re always mystified when you get to the check-in counter and the clerk types and types and types. What can she be doing? Don’t they have all that information in the computer already? This one was just key, key, and *bam* there’s your boarding pass. It took seconds, as it always should but almost never does. On top of that the flight was on time, security was quick, and the bathrooms were clean and modern. It was as though we were in a first world country. Strange.
And finally it was off to Sweden. I think I’d forgotten just how far north this is. Malmö is nearly as far north as Juneau, Alaska and – at least from our three-day stop – about as rainy. At first we liked the fact that it was 30 degrees cooler than Naples, but after a couple days I’d have enjoyed something a little above the mid-60s. And something a little drier than intermittent rain.
Still, we had a good time. The food is expensive and wine and booze is even more expensive, but we had a really nice hotel for just $111 a night; not sure how we managed that. There was a museum that included everything from modern art to 19th century stuff to an aquarium and a natural history museum. There were some pleasant parks and it was even the start of Gay Pride week, though all we saw to confirm that was a lot of rainbow flags. There is one building of architectural pride that was easy to find. And of course the people and the weather and all made it all feel as though I was back in Minnesota.
That was stop one in Sweden, the 62nd country we’ve been to since we started this strange adventure. We have four more stops in Sweden so we should get a reasonably decent view of the country.