18 April, 2013

Finns in Sweden

Well technically, Jessica is not a Finn. Technically, she is American - and I only know this because I knew her from age 12 when we met in 7th grade... in Utah... of all the places in the world. Well now she's in Finland with her Finn husband, Herr Finlandia, and they came for a little more of an extended trip than last time.

You'd think that, as a photographer, I would have come up with better photos but alas. I was much too caught up in the fun of having them with me than to bother with lugging around a 5kg camera. Instead, I opted for iPhone use... deal with it.

We hit the ground running on Friday. I met them at the airport, and from there we had all kinds of adventures in public transportation.

Jessica & Herr Finlandia waiting for the T-bana
We went all over the place, in an attempt to visit things in order from Airport to Home... since it is a long way to Tyresö from Arlanda, we saw many places.
Among them was my favorite second hand shop, located in Skarpnäck, where Jessica found a set of chairs to die for (seriously, this place has furniture for pennies) - and I found this:

Anyone attending an ugly sweater party anytime soon??
 The next day, was full of board games and food. We stayed home for much of the afternoon playing Herr Finlandia's newest acquisition, King of Tokyo.

Following hours of gaming fun, we all made our foods for the International Food and Game Party held at our friend Max's house. Realizing that the time was upon us to leave, we all rushed out the door to the bus stop (V followed in the van an hour later when his cake was done) and on our way! I've never travelled to Max's house by bus so it was a bit of an adventure.

 Once there though, fun commenced. All the attendees somehow managed to descend upon Max's house at precisely the same time - quite a feat considering we left an hour before V... haha

We played a very fun version of Jenga, and before we knew it - all the food was ready and it was time to eat!
I had a little of everything, but I think the shining star for me was the authentic Greek souvlaki (commonly incorrectly called simply "gyros"- which I've learned is actually the word for the meat that goes inside), prepared and served by our Greek friend Alex!

We all went around the table explaining the food we brought. Six countries were represented and at the end of the night I was very full. We followed dinner by playing Werewolf and Dixit, and much fun was had by all.

The following day, our Danish friends came to us on an impromptu gaming party, bearing SIX pizzas to share with the 4 of us. We spent much of the day doing this:

 ... and of course stuffing our faces.

The final day, V had to work, sadly, so Jessica and Herr Finlandia and I decided after much deliberation to go to the Skansen open air museum. After checking the websites, we realised that most other museums are closed on a Monday so we were very pleased that we'd get to go see Skansen as they boasted being open on Mondays.
We braved the rain and set out! 2348298736 bus transfers later, we were there. We saw the glass blowers:

...and we saw the general store and the book-binders' houses - but as we walked through the park, we realised that 80% of the exhibits were closed

We continued to walk around a bit, hoping that it wasn't true - but in the end decided that if we braved the rain and walking around in the wet April showers - it would be much more enjoyable if we could actually see the things we came to see! Even the main "market street" was completely closed and boarded up. Sad.
When we left, I politely reasoned with the entry warden for our ticket fee to be returned to us, and it was. We had only been in the park for 20 minutes before we decided to leave again. I'm very glad that we were refunded.
Instead, we chose to visit some places that Herr Finlandia was secretly hoping to visit and hit up some touristy shops for gifts for Jess' family and friends.

The last morning, we all rose at 3:00am to get to the airport on time. I saw them safely to the very last stop before they had to walk to the airport (if I left the station I'd have to pay an extra fee to get back in) and said our farewells.
It was such a pleasure hosting them here, even though things were a little cramped in our 40sq metre home. I am super excited for my turn to visit them in Finland, though we are unsure of when that will be as of yet.

Well, I have one final day on my bus pass so I'm off to use it! Have a great day!

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