Thursday, September 13, 2012

International Delight -- Part II

FLASHBACK!  Me, Kyle and Samantha circa July 2007
July 2012 -- 5 years later and slightly less reckless
Our very first visitor to our apartment in Stockholm, was my best friend, Samantha.  She braved schizophrenic weather changes (sun to hail to rain to snow to sun in less than 3 hours) and we wrote all about her first visit here.  The timing of her second visit meant that she was also our first visitor to our new house in the "country."  Unlike her last trip
where we made newcomer mistakes, this time both Jon and I could be paid as tour guides for Stockholm.  (He admits that I am better at it than he is, but both of us know the details of what to see and where to go in the city).  We had also spent most of his parental leave exploring our new island running and hiking on the trails throughout the nature reserve.  We were moderately experienced picnickers (a mandatory skill in Sweden) and had a good sense of what to pack for various outings in order to be prepared for varying weather and activities.  This visit was all about visiting -- not really seeing Stockholm as much.

Our friend Kyle had escorted Sam on a drinking tour through Europe and he was eager to get to Stockholm to see these mystical beautiful Swedish women.  I think he had fantasies of Swedish women buying him drinks in the bars and being lured into his embrace with his American accent but none of that happened.  Instead, he and Jon had a fun day strolling through Gamla Stan, all decked out in their most European-cut jeans and button down shirts looking GOOD for a day in fashionable Stockholm.  They just so happened to time their maximum Euro-ness on the first day of Stockholm Gay Pride Week.  I couldn't help but laugh at their timing and sent them a text saying that maybe they could convince a guy to buy them a drink.  You know, just to remind them of Midtown Atlanta. Like in our old days.  On the other side of the bridge, Sam and I found a nice rock for Calvin to splash in the lake.  We enjoyed the beautiful day and Calvin loved throwing pinecones into the water.

Pinecone throwing is fun
Sam has to touch every body of water -- her fingers have never touched the Baltic before
We decided to brave a Full Swedish experience and take a ferry from our port (how cool is that?!) to the archipelago island, Grinda.
Beautiful boat ride on the way to Grinda
Relaxing Swedish style (on a rock slide)
Sam and Calvin have complimentary hats
Chasing Calvin is a full time job!
Story time with Kyle
Story time with Sam
It was really nice to see Sam and Kyle again and I know that Calvin loved all of the attention.  He can be particular about who reads which books and he has his favorite readers.  It was so nice to have friends (who are more like family) in town and we can't wait to see them again soon!

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