punkwalrus (punkwalrus) wrote,

Sweden - Journey to Sundsvall

Cloudscape from train windows
Originally uploaded by punkwalrus.
They say there's Internet on this train trip, but I can't get it to work, and all their support pages are in Swedish. It's not exactly clear if I have to pay or I get it free, but whatever I do, I get some error I cannot translate. Luckily, some little girl is here to entertain me when she pokes her adorable blond head between the seats. She's maybe two, and unlike the SJ support pages, she doesn't care I don't speak Swedish.

Today started with the roaring of construction equipment at 6am. This led to me waking up in a sour mood after only 5 hours of sleep last night. My stomach didn't feel so good, so I skipped breakfast. We checked out of the hotel at 10:00am and went to Rådmansgatan to T-Centralen, and then met Sven and Karin to go to the Historic Museum off the Karlaplat station.

We spent a few hours looking at Viking artifacts before heading down to the Stockholm train station. Museums in Sweden are very well done. We participated in part of an outdoor reenactment where we made bread from flour, water, and cooked it on a stone. We saw a lot of history, a child's grave, and many, many artifacts. Then we started off to the trains.

Look, I don't know about you guys, but all those stories about how great the European transportation system is? All true in Sweden. I am so jealous. The Tunnelbana is clean and well-organized like the DC Metro, but after that, it is vastly different. The trains are wide, fast, and quiet. The SJ Railway is comfortable enough that I went to sleep within minutes, so I don't remember the journey so much as a bunch of a lot of countryside that, while beautiful, didn't change much, and kind of hypnotized me to sleep.

There was a svartrocker sitting across from me who kept staring at me, which was weird. It was like she was scanning me as if she recognized me, but wasn't sure. If we made eye contact, she looked away.

Anyway, 3 hours later, the quiet, speedy, and soft X2000 train glided to our stop in Sundsvall, where we walked 5 blocks to Karin's flat, and I washed clothes and did some tech support. Then we headed out to Indal.

The stuga here is more like a house. We're sleeping in what used to be the attic, but it's been finished for our arrival. I gave Karin a gift of Kona Blue Sky, and we sat down and had a wonderful dinner made from celery root. I didn't even know you could eat the root, but there you are.

As I type this, my beloved and her sister are heading out for Las Vegas. I hope they made it out okay. Obviously, I have NO Internet access out here in Indal, although they want me to try dial up. Being as shitty as AOL dial up has gotten since they sacked my testing department, I don't have a lot of hope. When I lost Internet back at home, I couldn't even get ONE connection in Fairfax to work, and my friend BJ told me that he's having terrible issues as well. Will AOL Globalnet work in Sweden? Doubtful. But I'll try.

What you might find is that I'll backdate these once I get Internet back, probably when I arrive home Friday. But I am not in any hurry... I fucking love this country. If it wasn't for my family and all my friends in DC? Fuck it, I'd move.

CR is homesick, though. I am, but only for my friends.
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