As I sat on my flight to Stockholm I thought about the number of flights I had actually been on in the past 3 months. I counted Nineteen. Nineteen flights! Wow. Nineteen times I got to experience the most amazing thing in the world. Nineteen times I got to the arrivals gate, and had no one waiting for me. When I get home to Thunder Bay, having someone waiting there for me, will quite possibly be the best feeling in the world. Seeing people hug and kiss and reunite after an extended period of time made me nostalgic and homesick, nineteen times over again. Homesick? yes. Going to a place that not only looks like home, has the climat of home, but has someone from home living there as well helps with this homesickness? Not quite.
Sweden made me feel like I was in Canada. It was a bittersweet feeling. Sweet because Canada is wonderful and I got to feel as if I were at home again, even if it were just for the weekend. Bitter, well because it was cold.
Although I didn’t get to spend an overly long period time in Stockholm, I did get to experience its stunning views and chill vibes. There was just something spectacular about Stockholm that made you feel so relaxed and peaceful. I’m not sure if it was because of all the candles lit up in the windows, the gorgeous christmas lights hung between buildings, or the friendly faces smiling up at you as they strolled through the streets.
People were enjoying life and all the wonderful little things it has to offer. That’s something I’ve noticed about Europe, people here enjoy there lives. Now, I’m not saying that we don’t enjoy our lives back in North America. I’m simply stating that here in Europe they sit down and drink their coffee, they rarely eat fast food or eat food on the go, and they do not try to cram 100 things into their day to day lives. They enjoy every, single, day. It’s a completely different lifestyle. I see people enjoying the beauty of the world around them here and it’s wonderful. Everyone could do that more often. This was particularly noticeable for me in Stockholm. Despite the cold (okay, it wasn’t THAT cold – I was just being a bit of a baby), and despite only getting to spend a short period of time in the city, I definitely think Stockholm is being added to my list of big cities that I actually like and would enjoy returning too.
I got to spend the next three nights in Falun, Sweden with a good friend of mine from Thunder Bay. Falun is three hours north of Stockholm and has the population of 37,000. It’s an adorable little town that filled my heart with happiness and Christmas spirit. In the morning, we would wake and the ground would be covered with a thin layer of fresh frost. The city center was decorated for Christmas with lights and a tree and people shopping for gifts or sipping on hot chocolate and coffee. At night, just like in Stockholm, people would light their windows with candles. It was so incredibly peaceful and happy. I absolutely adore France, but strangers here are not as accustomed to make conversation with one another. Where as in Sweden, everyone was talking and smiling to one another, especially in Falun. Even if there was no stop sign, cars would stop and the drivers would smile at you as they let you pass.
Did I mention that I got to experience my first snow fall while in Sweden too? It wasn’t much, but it was enough to send me straight into winter wonderland heaven and Christmas fever. I left Sweden beyond excited for the holiday season to start and have been listening to Christmas music while dancing around in my apartment ever since. I have already watched elf three times.
I hope everyone is enjoying their December as much as I am.