Södermalm is the cool, hip section of Stockholm. You know the “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” series? (Of course you do, it’s one of the most read series in the world.) Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomqvist spend most of their time hanging around Södermalm, just like their author Stieg Larrson. Anyways, it’s a totally awesome place to go wander around.
I’ll get back to my Sweden recap on Friday, but right now I want to point you all in the direction of personal favorite, astronaut Commander Chris Hadfield. Commander Hadfield signed off a five month stay at the ISS with a poignant and frankly impressive rendition of David Bowie’s Space Oddity. In SPACE.
Welcome back to planet Earth, Commander Hadfield. I’m going to miss your life-in-orbit updates.
So, as it turns out, I found the Nobel Museum to be incredibly fascinating. I’m a sucker for a decent science story. The Nobel Museum is one of the more famous places in Stockholm – the Swedish Academy of Sciences is located on the second floor of the building and they host the Nobel Prize Winners every year.
Alfred Nobel’s probably one of the most famous Swedes ever. He invented dynamite and was a consummate businessman, making him fabulously wealthy. Nobel never married or had children, so he dedicated his fortune to fund the awards that we know as the Nobel Prize. His one page will stipulated that a prize be given in physics, chemistry, and medicine/anatomy each for eminence, a prize in literature for work “in an idealist direction”, and a prize in peace for the person who gives the greatest service to international fraternity, reducing standing armies, or initiating peace congresses. Interestingly, in a time of severe nationalism, Nobel said that the prizes would be given regardless of nationality.
Gamla stan is universally recognized as the original site for Stockholm, dating back to the 13th century. Many of the buildings date back to the Renaissance and even the Medieval period (which was 1100s-1500s for Sweden), making it really freaking cool looking.
For some reason, I’ve always wanted to go north. Scandinavia always held something that caught my interest. Was it the Vikings? That super cool Danish friend I had in high school or those awesome Norwegians I met in university? When I was looking at families that needed a nanny, I specified three cities – Paris, Stockholm, and Copenhagen. I almost went to Denmark instead of France, if you can believe it. I’m grateful for the past year in Paris, don’t get me wrong. But I wanted to see what it was like further north.
I’m glad I waited until spring though.
Wanderlust and Lipstick is a site that I’ve been rereading for years. They cater to the “solo lady traveler/ lady who dreams of solo travel” market, but it’s got a lot of really useful and practical advice. Plus, their newsletter kind of spurred me onto my latest foray into international travel. I mean, it’s been a while since my last adventure, which was the UK back in November. (I really don’t count in-transit as a legitimate adventure, unless I end up somewhere cool for several days at a time. *cough* Bangkok *cough* )
So when I decided to actually do something with my spring holiday, I bought tickets to go to Sweden.
For the past few days I’ve been enjoying the lovely city of Stockholm. I’m still away on vacation, so I figure I’ll leave the Movits here as a nice little placeholder until Wednesday. I can now say with some certainty that their music video was shot in Gamla stan, the old historical district of Stockholm. It’s actually a really cool place and you’ll see a lot more of it in my next few posts.
Today marks a major milestone for In the Country of Heaven. Somehow, against all odds, I’ve managed to keep updating this thing and reach a grand total of 200 posts. I’m just as shocked as you are. I don’t know how much longer I’ll keep this blog going, but I’ll keep posting if you all keep reading.
To celebrate, here’s a picture of me looking ridiculous in front of the Eiffel Tower.