Monday, July 29, 2013

In another little cabin/stuga

I am currently staying in a little cabin in the backyard of the parents of the young woman who was an au pair in Seattle, another part of this marvelous extended family in Sweden. This family visited in Seattle last summer, so we know each other well and now even better. Two teens still at home; the other two are off in Norway because jobs are plentiful, salaries are higher, and Norwegians appreciate Swedish people's work ethic. Yesterday afternoon, we went for an afternoon boat trip, including a typical Swedish summer snack: syll (pickled herring, which I love), dill potatoes (which I love), cucumbers, tomatoes, and knäcka bröd (which my grandmother called hard tack--thick, flat, cracker-like bread--which I love), and a sauce similar to tartar sauce, except with added caviar. Snack was followed by a swim. Although Lake Vänern is Sweden's largest lake (and third largest in Europe), it is fairly shallow and, therefore, warm enough for swimming. I paused to make certain Staffan and Eva didn't scream bloody murder as they dove in. Thankfully, after several minutes of psyching myself up for cold water, I jumped in. AAAAHHHH!!! I grew up swimming in lakes--just nothing like it. The water was fabulous.The sun peeked in and out from behind white puffy clouds, we laughed and paddled like children. Just one fabulous moment in a day filled with many such moments.

For example, teens Per and Stina tutored me in Swedish vocabulary. Both speak fluent English and will take a third language before graduating gymnasium (high school) next year. Per is a history buff and regaled me with fascinating facts both historically and mythologically. He wants to be an engaging teacher. As his first pupil, I concur with his vocational choice. Stina is an accomplished shutter bug; she will pursue photography as a vocation. When they were in Seattle, Stina was most recognizable from behind her camera. Following their Swedish vocabulary quiz, the following words are now part of my Swedish lexicon, but can i work them into sentences?
    Hästsko = horse shoe
    Inlägg = orthotic
     Växthus = plant house/greenhouse

I am trying out more and more Swedish sentences, and Swedish words pop into my head. I truly adore this language.

Happy in Sweden! Hej då for now.

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