I’ve been busy lately, but I’ll post a quick note about the last few days I spent in Sweden after I returned from my trip to the Balkans.
After arriving back in Uppsala, I wrote a thematic paper then prepared a thematic presentation to go with it, then presented said presentation. On the 23rd, after I got my room cleaned up, stored some stuff in my storage closet, and packed my stuff, I caught a train to Göteborg (Gothenburg).
I spent Friday night, Saturday, and Sunday there, and flew out early Monday morning to Vancouver via London, arriving here in Vancouver May 26th, 365 days after I left (not including my 10 day trip in March for the knee stuff).
Current plans are: fly out of Vancouver August 13th, land in England August 14th for a 4 week internship in Oxford; fly home to Sweden in late September to get my act together there, then fly out sometime in October for Thailand where I hope to do my thesis research; fly back to Sweden at some point to actually write the thesis, submit it, then head off to wherever I manage to find a paid position to kick off my career. Other than the internship, all plans remain fluid, since I never really know what might come up to change them.
A few photos from the last days in Sweden:
On my last trip out to the student bar, I carried my passport as ID as always. And yes, it is real. Note that it opens ‘backward.’
On May 23, I trained across the country to Göteborg and met up with three friends who lived in the same set of flats with me in New Zealand – Karin, Vania, and Ratana – and one new friend who was there the next year, Henrik. Vania and her sister Sonia both work at Liseberg, which I visited just before Christmas.
This time, on Saturday, we went so the ‘kids’ could go on all the rides. I’m too old for rides, so I volunteered enthusiastically to be team photographer for the day.
Before the rides, Vania had to pay for parking. So while she walked to the nearest functional machine, we stole her car and drove it to another part of the lot, then hid a few metres away.
She spotted the empty stall immediately and found us (we accidentally wore ridiculously bright colours that day) pretty quickly…
Ratana, Henrik, Vania just before they got on the rainbow ride:
Can you see them?
I have no idea.
This one is made entirely out of wood (I’m pretty sure there are some metal bolts, but the structural stuff is all wood).
A city tram outside the park, seen from a super high viewing tower at Liseberg:
Crazy jukebox car ride:
That all-wood rollercoaster, with the three kids on it:
That night we went out to a dance club, danced a bit, and eventually went to bed very, very tired.
Sunday, among other things, we had a barbeque! Vania’s parents are terrific hosts; I highly recommend Hotel Ranjbar if you’re ever in Gothenburg! Mohammad and Jinus cooked us up some terrific Iranian style shishkebab stuff, and it was delicious!
To eat it, you have to hold the bread in your hand a bit folded, then take the skewer and pull it so that all the food stays in the bread – much harder than it sounds! Then add salad and special Persian spice mix and voilà! Instant awesome.
Right near Vania’s parents’ home there’s a lake so, on Sunday evening after Henrik caught his train home to Lund, Ratana, Vania, and I went there to chill for a while and eat candy.
It’s a very pretty little lake!
Vania drove me to the airport early in the morning, and after a short flight to London I was airborne once more en route to Vancouver, where I landed safe and sound in the early afternoon of the same day.
I then went to my friend Helaine’s apartment for a Settlers of Catan party, during which I played my second ever match of the game and beat the veterans I was competing against. I put that here purely to brag :-)