The good ship Urshult hits stormy waters

Stormy watersI was expecting to write this evening’s post from the comfort of my new home, but it turns out the universe had other plans.  Our move has been deferred until tomorrow because the bank did not have all its papers in order for today’s handover.  Having driven an hour to get there and bought Swedish semla buns to celebrate our first night, getting the call about the delay came as something of an anti-climax.

However, I took today’s disappointment in my stride because I have had such an amazing and wonderful time this week.  Sweden is so full of new and wonderful experiences that even driving to the bank seems exciting!  I love that about living abroad; everything seems like an adventure!

Here is a rundown of my top 3 ‘wow’ moments from this week, and by the end of it you’ll see why my internal weather has been sunny rather than stormy:

B1. Choosing a dog

Yes, dear readers my new country life-style would not be complete without a dog.  And not just any dog, but a lagotto.  Yesterday we met with a local breeder to road-test her lagotto dogs on a walk in the forest.  I fell in love.  With lustrous curly fur, bright inquisitive eyes, athletic bodies and a lively personality, I found the lagottos irresistible.  I saw my future self bonding with a cute lagotto pup, going for runs together around the lake with him, enjoying his company whilst doing the hotel laundry, watching him grow…  In short, I was sold!

lagotto

Walking through the forest or skogen with the dogs was very uplifting and I do not think I have ever visited anywhere so unspoilt.  There was no path, no signposts, just acres of lush green wilderness:  large moss-covered rocks, tall pine trees and small hills. The dog breeder said to me that walking with the dogs in the forest is like “free therapy” and I think she is right.  After an hour and a half I felt utterly refreshed.

2.  Choosing a new bike

Close friends will know that, sadly, earlier this year my 9 month old ‘dream’ bike got stolen from outside my flat in London.  She was sleek, black, silent and smooth…a dream machine with 21 gears.  It was the bike I’d always wanted and I was gutted to be without her.  The theft happened the same morning that I accidentally left the bath on and flooded my bathroom…now that was a memorable day!!

After an appropriate grieving period had elapsed, I decided it was time to buy a replacement bike here in Sweden.  We went to the local bike shop and I fell for a bike that was utterly unlike my last one:  vintage and girly with a shopping basket.  It seems a new Anna is emerging here in Sweden!  I rode the bike 10 km home to my in-laws house and I can confirm that I am very, very happy with my purchase.

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3. Swedish safari

Driving in rural Sweden is very different to inner-city London, where I am from.  This week, whilst driving hubby and mother-in-law to the hotel, a herd of 7 deer ran across the road in front on our car!   We slowed down to watch them run away, mesmerised by their white tails bouncing elegantly back into the forest.

Swedish deerOther ‘safari’ driving moments include seeing an eagle and a large flock of tranor birds.  These long-legged birds mate for life and are very graceful.  I saw a pair on this morning’s bike ride around the village and stopped to watch.

tranor

So, there you have it.  Despite stormy hotel-related events, the outlook for last week was decidedly sunny.  I wish all of my readers a sunny week!

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