Paddling, chilling, and sunbathing.

Wait, yet, where am I?

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I am not gonna say I feel already at home at Åland, or maybe I should. The thing is that now, as long as I have a place to stay and a roof on my head I do not longer need too long time to feel myself comfortable in a new place. For some months ago, starting a new activity I would feel the need of meeting persons in that group, but now I just panic and stress a bit before arriving in a new place though I know I will meet people quite soon after approaching that new place. Åland – talking about this – has been kind of a surprise to me. I knew I would meet someone during this month and that I probably would not have that much time to meet people because of shifts at the restaurant, but the thing is that a lot of things just happened from the very beginning of my stay here.

News of the day
Meeting this girl yesterday at the lake was one of the things that made my routine rolling faster than I would have ever imagined. Together with one of the sisters we went to the lake this mornign around 11.00 and laid on the platform sunbathing a lot, drinking coffee with the sound of the water and talking very much. Later Linnea – the girl from Karlstad – and me took a kayak and paddled up to Kastelholms slott. There are so many images I would like to share with you but as long as I do not find the camera cable that will not be possible. Everything is pushed into my trolley, the only thing is that right now I just have everything there and things are not as easy as it may sound 😀 So, patience and I will publish images soon 🙂 🙂 Btw, as I was saying, the castle is close to the restaurant, and after the kayak part we bought a ice cream and sat in the sun, and later again we visited the little prison in the old village. Intresting and cheap! We canoed back home with a bit of head-wind but it was ok. In the evening I was invited for dinner at their place, and crap what a nice house they have, together with the view from the terrace. For those who  already follow me from my exchange year in 2013, you maybe remember the images of Carl Larsson’s family house, full of colors and really particular architecture inside – besides, those furnitures ispired many IKEA furnitures! And if you do not, sure you can check here and here don’t you? 😛 Sorry for that, I just saw it is in Italian, but sure you can use a browser translator right? 😀 Well, the house I visited today was not much different from that, incredibly nice. We ate a traditional Swedish summer dinner I would say, on the balcony eating grilled meat and sallad, finished with sitting on the sofas outside drinking coffee – is there something sounding wrong with all that? At least I am sure I will have energy to keep finishing writing the post and maybe uploading images!!! 😉

I am so happy to be familiar with the Swedish way of living. If a thing does not work at the moment, it will. If something goes wrong, it will surely be better. There are no bad weather conditions just bad clothes. If you learn how to experience every season of the year you will never get depressed during winter. Feeling bad about one thing will not make things any better. And drink coffee for God sake, that surely will help any pain!

I am developing my Swedish as I ever could imagine, Åland is much more similar to Sweden than it may seem, it is actually the same, and products are being imported from both Sweden and Finland, it is very incredible to be here 😀

When I move from Sweden I often keep with me that part of cultural background I learnt about Sweden and which I made mine. It works just like this, I meet people and Imost often behave as a Swede than everything else, still keeping by deepest Italian cultural background. But ways of greetings, of feeling comfortable at almost strangers’ places, being able to see silence as a pause between talks and not just as a miss, always still stay with me when meeting at least Sweds and others from Scandinavia – often just no Italian people. When I speak Swedish I am often a bit more relaxed, while with the English I speak very fast and let me Italian accent flow stronger 🙂
Another curious thing is that when I speak with Sweds about Sweden I always see myself – a bit of course, not directly and completely – as one coming from Värmland, and I find this very interesting. It was actually very interesting how I could feel linked to Värmland and Karlstad when today I spoke very much about Karlstad with Linnea who has been living there all her life!

For those who are EU-citizens and can speak any nordic languages, I really recommend Nordjobb, since I think is an enormous opportunity to take the first steps in the working environment and get some experience, as get as having a work place in some of the nicest and most relaxing places in Europe 🙂 More info will come later in next posts 🙂

See you soon, I’ll crush in my bed watching a film!

First days, Swedish feeling

Hi again! Quarter past eleven in the night here at the Åland islands, still very tired as it was 1.00 a.m., I guess my brain is still processing all the things happening here!

Yesterday was the first time I was at the restaurant, I forgot to write in the blog but I actually had an intro to the restaurant and then got the chance to work 18 to 21. Many things going on since I never worked in a restaurant before, but it looks very intresting and motivating to be there, so I look forward to my next shifts. Nice “colleagues” (makes me feel so old to say this word!) and very nice environment!

At home – Berit and one of the sons had picked me up at the restaurant – we sat watching a part of England-Island cheering so badly for the latest! I went to bed around 23.30 incredibly tired. Woke up this morning again around  10,30 and had breakfast. Lunch later and then sat in the sun for a while, as well as reading some papers I got from the restaurant yesterday. We had dinner outside and then I got a walk around to explore a bit the place. When I came back from the lake the all family was going to take a bath and I followed them there again. The funny thing is that among the family’s acquaintances is a family from Karlstad, and the daughter reached us at the lake. We talked a bit and tomorrow we’ll take a kayak tour. Things are happening just after some hours, always so exciting to travel!

When we went home I was actually planning to watch a movie on my own in the bed before starting to sleep, but I was very glad to be called from downstairs to help set the table before a “kvälls te” (an evening tea) with the family. I really appreciated that and had a pleasure time with them – everyone is very talkative which is so similar to my way of being. Feels like I will get along pretty good with the siblings!

I need to sleep now, I’ll see you soon!

Where am I? Of foggy (is)lands, boat names and new dialects.

Monday, 27th June 2016

Try to imagine my face when, finally arrived on the island of Åland, in the harbor of Mariehamn, I was welcomed by a tall, thin, super kind and nice woman – I had been talking to her with e-mail in the last weeks – who met me in a very warm way and gave me a very warm hug. The trip has been a long one yesterday. I left the campus in Karlstad after having breakfast with some friends and at 8,45 my bus was leaving to the bus station. I then took the first bus to Stockholm, and here the adventure starts. A police car was in front of us and someone from the inside told the bus driver to stop. Thee “old uncle” as it was later called by the woman driving the bus, gave her a alcohol test and told her that the destination on the screen should not be blinking. Well, for such a stupid thing we waited for 20 minutes, and the bus company had to call the train company to ask if the train from Örebro which many where going to take, could stop and wait for the bus passengers. Well, when the woman who was driving the bus told us what had just happened, she was very anxious about the consequences and a bit angry…so at the end she got a warm applaude! Rain, warmth and heavy luggages when I changed the bus. Arrived in Stockholm I was very tired after some hours of sitting in the bus. I had lunch in the station, went around a lot, took a coffee, had videochat and calls, reda and wrote on my blog, spoke with someone at the very end. I then took the bus to the harbor which would take a hour to be reached. The funniest thing is that the boat is called Rosella! Super foggy had been already in Sweden, but on the way to the harbor and all the way to the island it was impossible to see anything, so you can really imagine how boring the journey was!

On the bus to the harbor the driver was also very funny, he took the microphone and said something like “well welcome onboard, just say that I would have really liked not to be working in the Midsummer weekend but this is life…well, let’s drive on this (“rondella” in Italian, can’t find the word since I don’t have internet) just once otherwise they get angry!

Differently from what I was expecting, nobody here speaks Swedish with a very strong accent (or is, actually, a dialect) and I actually missed the thing that they are not at all bilingual in the Åland island, but the first language is Swedish, and when they grow up they start with studying English and then Swedish. Berit is the name of the woman who came and pick me up, and since I will stay here for a month and I have already lived with a host-family for a long time, I definitely feel part of the family – as long as they tell me I can do so, and she did! Since we were going to pick up one of her children to another harbor at 1.00 a.m. (Finland is a hour more than Sweden) she drove me everywhere in the island to show me things a bit, even though unfortunately it was incredibly foggy, which was a nice experience anyway. Brit told me a lot about everything, including the thing that one-hundred-fifty folk dancers from Sweden will come in this week for the Nordic Fold Dance festival, and that she is managing a lot of things related to that. Moreover, they will eat on Thursday at Smakbyn, the restaurant where I will start to work today.

When we went and pick up the daughter at the harbor in the other side of the island, it was not at all cold but very very foggy – around 14°! I can just say that Berit is Finnish from the strong “r” she has sometimes, but the eldest daughter sounds completely Swedish!

It took a hour to go home after the harbor, so we were at home at 2.00 local time. The house is very nice and big! They have vegetables and fruits cultivation and the house is just in front of a forest and close to the water. The son works in a bike shop and we will have to try to find a bike for myself, since I am very short compared to the people here! So, this is gonna be funny as well! Berit showed me the house and when I went upstairs some animal skins where just hanged close to my bed! But I was so tired I got asleep very fast!
Berit’s husband I have heard works in the forest! and that really makes me feel of stories about trolls and fairies in the north, I know that’s stupid, but it just does!

I am totally surprised about how many things I have to tell after less then 5 hours awake here in Åland.

Funny thing? Meeting people from the Åland is making me feel very Swedish! And I guess many thinks that I am a Swede with Italian background!

Another funny one? The word “tatti” – my surname – means a kind of mushroom in Finnish!

They just asked me if I wanted to put something in the laundry starting now, that’s not really Italian is not it? I mean putting your clothes in almost strangers laundries, but as said, here in Scandinavia people really welcome you as a part of the family almost right away, then it stands to you to accept the invitation or not! So, I really got used to this and I like it!

Well, I got breakfast with porridge, strawberries, apple mousse and smashed raspberries! I will have a little lunch later, but first I will need to study the menu of the restaurant and got used with the different ways of preparing the table for new guests. If there will not be any new work shifts for me in this week, I will start to work on the 1st of July which is this coming Friday, and for the following three days, including serving at a wedding on Saturday the 2nd!

I will see you soon, and sorry to my family and friends if I cannot answer but I do not have internet, maybe I will not buy it either, since it is just for a month! Maybe I will just use a bit from the house’ internet to publish my posts 🙂

See you soon and have a nice start of the week!

Varmt och fuktigt

Sitter i centralstationen i Stockholm. En kopp kaffe bredvid mig och jag väntar att den ska kyla ner. Skjol och kort armat tröja gör mig inte känna mindre stressad och kallare än luften är. Regn och varmt har det varit under hela resan som jag började i morse från Karlstad till Stockholm. Trafik under sista delen från Västerås, och i början fick chaufforen stanna då destinationen blinkte på bussen och enligt polisen var inte det o helt ok, antagligen. Blev 20 minuter försenat men ankom i Stockholm ändå i tid.

Åt en macka på Subway och lugnade mig lite en stund innan jag gick och satt mig på stationen. Backpacking verkar vara top resstil just nu. Ser fram emot och göra en sånt trip igen, utan att boka tak över huvud eller annat.

Ska dricka min kaffe nu, och läsa Solstorm av Åsa Larsson. Kl.18 ska jag ta bussen som åker till hamnen och åka då båten till Mariehamn, på Åland. Där ska familjen där jag kommer att bo på en månad hämta mig.

Har introduktion imorgon på restaurangen och ska faktiskt ta mitt första passet imorgon. Märkte att på lördag blir det bröllop på restaurangen. Ser faktiskt fram emot att jobba den dag 🙂 😉

Ses snart och ha en bra söndag! 😉

Frammenti di lacrime

 

 

Sono seduta su un autobus giallo diretto verso Karlstad, lasciato Uddeholm venti minuti fa, arriverò tra circa un’ora.

Stamattina mi sono svegliata e scesa in sala dove tutti stavano finendo di guardare un film con Julia Roberts, che dopo qualche minuto ho scoperto essere Eat, Pray, Love dal momento che il titolo in svedese era abbastanza diverso! Mi ricordo di aver visto l’inizio deö film qualche anno fa rifiutandomi di continuare a vederlo dopo il suo viaggio in Italia e le scene troppo stereotipate delle vie romane. Questa volta invece ho visto la fine, commuovendomi sorprendentemente nell’ultima scena, sentendo l’audio in inglese ma soprattutto leggendo i sottotitoli in svedese. Riporto le parole qui…quelle nel nuovo paragrafo sono quelle che sento molto vicine alla mia esperienza. Buona giornata e a presto!

“…I’ve come to believe that there exists in the universe something I call “The Physics of The Quest” – a force of nature governed by laws as real as the laws gravity or momentum. And the rule of Quest Physics maybe goes like this:

“If you are brave enough to leave behind everything familiar and comforting (which can be anything from your house to your bitter old resentments) and set out on a truth-seeking journey (either externally or internally), and if you are truly willing to regard everything that happens to you on that journey as a clue, and if you accept everyone you meet along the way as a teacher, and if you are prepared – most of all – to face (and forgive) some very difficult realities about yourself….then truth will not be withheld from you.” Or so I’ve come to believe.”

Of dancing frogs, about sleeping on flowers and midnight baths

..and the ****** (*) on its way…

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…which is probably or for sure not what every Swedes is thinking about right now about the Midsummer day celebration, or is, Midsummer evening, which is actually the day before Midsummer day. For those who do not know about this very typical Swedish tradition, this happen every year between the 20th and the 26th of June, and the really celebration part is to be done in the afternoon of the Friday (Midsummer afton) and during the night. As Swedes seem to like this way of partying, the morning, afternoon and evening of Saturday they will likely lay hungering somewhere, eating rests or starting to drink again depending on how old they are. The second Midsummer in Sweden I am experiencing the Midsummer celebration with the host family, which includes chilling really much, eating very traditional food, being celebrated for the turning 20 years on the 22nd, dancing around the Midsummer pole and sleeping, staying in the Sun, eating rests and planning the Midsummer Midnight bath.

I woke up by myself around 8, turned in the bed for a while and got the best shower of this week after being done with moving, being helped by friends and the host family. Then I put on me a very summerish dress, ‘cause it does not matter whether it was going to be cold or not, today it is Midsummer and Summer has to be cheered! Well, little breakfast ‘cause food was not really gonna be missed today. The mother of my host father came and had lunch with us, after we ate a strawberry cake – or is a very traditional Swedish cake made for Midsummer or National Day on the 6th of June, called jordgubbstårta in Swedish. Sill, potatoes, meatballs, salmon and ham and more was served around 2p.m. and we sat outside drinking coffee and eating strawberries later. At 3 we went to the Midsummer pole in the park in Uddeholm and sang traditional songs such as like “The little frogs” and “the fox in the winter”. Maaikee, a Dutch girl I knew from my exchange year, was there with her sister and we had a very nice chilling time. She was an exchange student as me but in the USA, went back home but had felt in love with USA and moved there for twenty-one years ago. We talked very much and then invited them at a midnight bath to take today at the lake in front of the house.

Well, I’ll tell you about the presents I got from the host family today for my birthday. I had a necklace with the symbol of the region of Skåne, where Malmö is located. Then a present card from Ikea and a very nice card made by Rebecca, the host sister. Got also other very super presents from family and friends. My dad thought about my love for traveling and got me one of those books with a lot of images you have to paint, color, and which help you to relax a lot – which I definitely need after this last stressing and fast-mode weeks. The drawings are not just flowers but they are a lot of city maps to be filled with color. I already imagine how my room in Malmö will look like with all this drawings hung on the walls. I got from my mother the premium update for wordpress, so that I can upload way more photos on the blog – coming soon, just have to activate it!

In the afternoon I made a Midsummer crown but it did not work out as two years ago since flowers have flowered a bit earlier then it had been then so the crown did not look as nice as that one. By the way, applying to girls the tradition says that seven kinds of flowers have to be put under the pillow where you will sleep on during the night to Midsummer day. Then you will dream about your loved one. Pretty romantic legend right? After the midnight bath I guess I will be tired enough to sleep as deeply as I did in the afternoon – gosh, I thought I was on another planet when I woke up after a two hours “nap”.

I will not spend too much time reminding that the 20th of June has been the Summer solstice and soon – usually a few days after that the length of the days is the same – days will get shorter and shorter, which inevitably reminds of Winter if you live in Sweden. Just saying, since April, if I just said the word winter, cold, snow, or Christmas, Sweds used to look at me nasty and almost get angry to me! I got enough Winter I could live without snow for ten years now on, but that will come back inevitably and every Swede will have to deal with it. But in Malmö Winter will likely be a bit easier and not as dark as it gets here in Värmland.

My birthday celebration was just what I was hoping for, or is smiling faces, a lot of dance and much laughs. In the morning I had gone to Ikea with Veronica, and ate a very big Swedish food-made buffet brunch together. Then went to but some boxes for packing and went home. I started to prepare for the party in the night and so. The only thing that did not really go as planned was the weather – sounds a bit Swedish right? – since it started to rain exactly when we started to move things outside at the barbecue place at campus, so we had to go in and eat dinner there. We had speakers and the girls from Germany made a lot of food, and I made pizza and a cake with berries. In the middle of the dancing we sprang out and started to dance in the rain, with It’s raining man!, singing later some of the songs we sang in the choir, since Elisa and Veronica were there – soprano and alts on place! At the end it was time for goodbyes which always make me a bit sad of course. I am trying to make the best of it leaving always a smile on my face and on the other’s, but this time it was a bit hard.

This was the resume of a big part of this year Midsummer day, the start of the end of this wonderful adventure in Värmland. Some more days and I will be heading to Finland, work there for  a month while I will hopefully find an apartment in Malmö. Then again to Värmland, then Italy and Malmö, finally to start the International Migration and Ethnic Relations program. I am very excited and looking forward to it but I need to experience and enjoy every single day here yet.

I just got to know that I will be able to work in the restaurant in Finland from Monday, very excited for this!

Finish to see P.S. I love you, and preparing for the midnight bath soon! See you later and goodnight 🙂

* -> Winter

Sul bordo dell’età adulta

Sole ancora sopra l’orizzonte, mobili sparsi nella stanza, odore di pulito, pareti bianche lavate da poco. Sono le 22,10. Legalmente sarò ventenne tra meno di due ore, tecnicamente tra circa ventiquattro ore. Sono stanca, distrutta, ma puesto post non può essere lasciato non scritto, non si compiono vent’anni spesso in questa vita! Inutile dire che per me questi 20 anni saranno davvero importanti, anzi sento di ripetermi a raccontarlo di nuovo. Fine di un anno a Karlstad fantastico, e inizio di mille altre avventure, prima il lavoro in Finlandia, poi il trasferimento a Malmö per almeno tre anni!

Oggi sveglia alle 7 come ieri e tutto il giorno a impacchettare e pulire. The con un’amica ed il ragazzo che poi m ihanno aiutato con dei consigli super utili per pulire lavandino e cappa…insomma, alla fine sono stata fino alle 22 a pulire e per fortuna il cielo sereno e luminoso aiuta a non sentiresi troppo stanchi. Ma domani sveglia alle 6,45 – prontamente ho lasciato il telefono con la sveglia in cucina come avevo fatto stamattina, almeno sono obbligata ad alzarmi! Mi faro la prima doccia da ventenne ed uscirò con Veronica per andare ad IKEA a fare un tradizionale brunch svedese a buffet, poi giro a ikea per comprare altre scatole da trasloco, ICA per comprare gli ingredienti per la torta e la pizza (manca solo la farina!) e poi a casa.  Anzi no! Il salto al systembolaget è d’obbliigo! Diciamo che sarei potuta entrarci anche da più piccola senza comprare nulla, ma finora ci son ostata solo una volta con la mia famiglia ospitante…l’emozione sarà forte domani 😀 Più tardi mi incontrerò con due ragazzi al campus, un ragazzo e una ragazza tedeschi, per impacchettare dei cuscini che gli studenti hanno lasciato, in modo che si ricicla e si risparmia per i prossimi studenti! Quindi alle 13 andrò al campus portandomi tutte le cose necessarie per la festa…dopo l’aiuto per i cuscini prepareremo le varie cose per la festa, sperando che il tempo rimanga bello anche per tutta la giornata di domani, e verso le 18 inizierà il barbecue-chill evening. E a quanto pare anche dei ragazzi della scuola dove ero stata exchange student verranno! La playlist deve essere completata!

I miei ultimi minuti da diciannovenne, da piccola, da mascotte tra gli studenti internazionali, da “coraggiosa a lasciare casa così presto”, da teenager, da “ancora un po’ bambina, forse senza ancora troppe responsabilità. Ora vi lascio, tra meno di due ore mi sveglierò ventenne! Spero che stasera riuscirò a dormire e non pensare troppo a Malmö e alla Finlandia…ma si, dopotutto sono distrutta!!!

Buonanotte! 🙂

Chi arriva, chi se ne va

Cari lettori, credo convenga abituarsi al fatto che ormai mi riferisco al passato scandendo il tutto in periodi di sei mesi, o meglio semestri. Da studentessa credo sia il modo più facile per orientarsi nel tempo, valutare cambiamenti e situazioni pre e post semestre autunnale, primaverile ecc. Almeno credo sia meglio così per i lettori italiani, invece che usare il conteggio delle settimane che invece viene usato qui. Non ho più la testa per fare brainstorming, anche se adoro farlo, quando scrivo i miei post. Italiano, inglese e svedese, sono abbastanza confusa, oltre a crisi di identità culturali che si sono manifestate particolarmente durante il match di venerdì (17!) tra Italia e Svezia. Vedere per la prima volta una partita in un ambiente completamente internazionale, con gente da tutto il mondo, la telecronaca in inglese, e un ragazzo austriaco che ha la maglia svedese di un giocatore metà italiano metà svedese che gioca per la “tre corone” (per chi non lo sapesse, sono simbolo della Svezia e simboleggiano le due proprietà della corona svedese che erano prima Norvegia e Danimarca). Per la prima volta mi sono trovata a sentirmi completamente neutrale al gioco – si intende molto più di quanto non lo fossi mai stata davanti ad una partita di calcio! – ma particolarmente felice quando l’Italia ha fatto il primo gol, ascoltando gli “insulti” molto divertenti della gente intorno. Insomma, è stato davvero molto divertente guardare la partita con loro, sicuramente una cosa da rifare in un ambiente internazionale, anche se mi sono mancate le chiacchiere ad alta voce e di commenti sui giocatori di entrambe le squadre.

 

Sono in cucina, tutto sembra molto diverso da come era poche ore fa. Il microonde È già in una scatola di cartone IKEA, tre cassetti del frigorifero stanno ad asciugare dopo essere stati lavati questo pomeriggio. Sul letto oggi ho rovesciato tutti i vestiti contenuti nel guardaroba, per decidere cosa andrà in Finlandia, cosa dalla famiglia ospitante per i due giorni in cui starò da loro per la festa di mezza estate, cosa dovrà rimanere li per essere trasferito a Malmö, e cosa potrei eventualmente portarmi a Roma ad agosto, oltre alle cose della Finlandia. Insomma, logica e pazienza a me! Non avrei immaginato che tutto questo sarebeb stato così stressante fisicamente e psicologicamente. Questo anno a Karlstad mi sono vista cambiare, un’esperienza decisamente piena di ostacoli da un lato ma piena di soddisfazioni dall’altro. Come mi ero trovata cambiata dopo l’anno da exchange student in Svezia, lo sono ora dopo 10 mesi a Karlstad. Ho avuto la mia rivincita su alcune cose che non erano esattamente andate come avevo immaginato durante il mio primo anno in Svezia. Ho migliorato il mio svedese e decisamente anche l’inglese, avendo studiato molti corsi sento di essere pronta per affrontare il tanto atteso e desiderato programma di laurea in International Migration and Ethnic Relations. So stare da sola e mi piace, ma so anche quali effetti la solitudine può avere – soprattutto tra i mesi di ottobre e febbraio, quando nuvole e buio ti rendono un animale in letargo forzato alla veglia e alla ricerca di luce, cibo, e caldo. Ho una conoscenza abbastanza ampia – o almeno interculturalmente accettabile – di diverse culture, tra cui generalmente quella Asiatica, Europea e Centro Americana, anche se di strada ce n´è molta da fare per approfondirle. Come già scoperto nello scorso semestre, gli asiatici sono persone affidabilissime e molte educate. Prima di venire a Karlstad ed incontrare così tanta gente non ero molto attratta dal visitare l’Asia, ma ora che mi sono davvero resa conto del bagaglio culturale che si può raccogliere, ed ora che conosco molta gente che potrei andare a trovare, ho decisamente cambiato idea. Ho promesso alle ragazze e ai ragazzi asiatici di rivederli al più presto in Asia (fra quattro anni credo sia la promessa più credibile che ho potuto fare, e allora sarà anche l’anno del topo, ovvero l’animale segno di chi è nato nel 1996 ad esempio). I tedeschi sono sicuramente le persone che ho conosciuto e sto conoscendo meglio durante questi due semestri. Solamente un mese fa ho iniziato a vedermi spesso con un gruppo di tedeschi e sembra che mi sono abbastanza integrata e che mi accolgano a braccia aperte – da non prendere letteralmente per una volta, essendo tedeschi! – usano molto sarcasmo e sono persone deliziose, leali e gentili. Insomma, da cosa racconto sembrerebbe che dovremmo avere un po’ più di fiducia in tutta la gente che ci circonda…ai tedeschi ho promesso di tornare una volta al mese a Karlstad per salutarli, anzi…ahimé abbiamo fatto una scommessa, che se non tornerò ogni tre settimane dovrò farmi un bagno gelato quando poi tornerò! Che dire, sarebbe comunque un’esperienza no?

Andare in Finlandia per lavorare come cameriera, a Malmö per studiare, e diventare ventenne solamente tra tre giorni mi sta riempiendo la testa di cose a cui pensare, non solo da fare ma soprattutto di pensieri che girano senza sosta. Questi venti anni li vedo davvero come un traguardo, dopo un’anno di raggiungimenti, tristezze, risultati universitari e soddisfazioni. Ho molti piani per il semestre prossimo, la vita a Malmö, e magari a seconda di quanti soldi guadagnerò (perché riuscirò a trovare un lavoro per dindirillina!) per i viaggi. In lista per ora sono Irlanda con una mia amica, Repubblica Ceca da sola e al terzo posto l’Asia, che sarà declassata non appena destinazioni più economiche mi verranno in mente! In ogni caso, nonostante oia molto eccitata all’idea di questen nuove esperienze, la tristezza e la pesantezza nel lasciare Karlstad e la mia vita qui si fa sentire. Soprattutto perché come era successo prima di Natale, proprio all’ultimo momento sto incontrando nuova gente, ma per fortuna saranno a Karlstad anche il prossimo semestre e li potrò incontrare, e comunque la Germania non è così lontana da Malmö no?!

Mi inizio ad avvicinare al letto, devo mettere in ordine dei vestiti nelle scatole, e domani devo pulire la casa e chiamare il negozio di seconda mano e cheidere se possono venire a prendersi dei mobili. Avrò tempo fino a martedì per pulire e svuotare casa, perché mercoledì sarà il mio compleanno e non ho intenzione di stancarmi! Il programma è svegliarmi prestissimo per fare una tipica torta svedese alle fragole che viene servita per la festa di mezza estate (si chiama jordgubbstårta per i golosi curiosi 😛 ). Dopo andrò con Veronica a fare un brunch da IKEA, e che brunch! e prima gita da ventenne al systembolaget, il negozio che vende bevande sopra il 3,5 di alcool – gita d’obbligo! Poi qualche ora al lago e preparazione per la festa bbq che farò al campus, dove appunto c´è un posto barbecue con delle panche molto “cosy”. Il giorno dopo dormirò il più possibile ma dovrò pulire le ultime cose in casa e caricare tutte le scatole nella macchian della mia host family, dato che alle 15,30 verranno a vedere l’appartamento che dovrà essere pulito e completamente vuoto. Good luck to me!

Ora vi lascio, i vesitti aspettano di essere inscatolati! Buonanotte!

Of Scandinavian books, smiling faces before sad goodbyes and Asian dinners

I am in the strongest writer feeling I ever had. Sitting on my bed with the back against the wall, a pillow inbetween. A mug with hot camomilla was waiting to cool down dancing on the bed until some seconds ago. Now it is empty and I leave my writing flewing.

Yesterday, or exactly for forty minutes ago, is been the last day of my first week free from school/university. Definitely a very nice week very full of things, satisfactions and sport, and also a bit of Sun. Monday was the Swedish national day and I went with some friend to a city park where we got free coffee and sunbathed and talked. During the week I biked a few times to and back from the city, I went to the cinema with my Swedish friend Veronica and watched The Dressmaker (which I recommend, but be prepared for very depressing moments!). On Friday – or Thursday? – I went to the hospital ‘cause I was really not feeling that well, but then they told me just to take some paracetamol and to rest – ok I am probably getting paranoid about illness? I know there is a word for it but I really cannot remember which it is! Funny thing…when I was at the hospital I saw a girl which I would actually meet again at campus yesterday…never met her before but she has been staying here for the whole semester!

During this week I also got the result from Linköping university, telling me that I actually passed the TISUS exam, which means that my Swedish is at this time on level C1 and that I could – but I want to wait a bit first – study at university in Swedish. Because now, for the 15 credits I have left in each semester  I will prefer to study extra courses in English. For example for this semester (the first one, the autumn semester) I subscribed for “Childrens’ rights” and “Creative Writing 1”, let’s see which one I get in! The other thing about TISUS is that it could be very useful to show it for job opportunities.

Another nice thing is that I completely fixed accomodation and travel to Finland where I will work as a waitress during the whole month of July! I will arrive there on the 28th o June and probably couchsurf for a night to see the capital (Mariehamn). Then the people who will host me – they are a family living just a 3-kilometres walk from the restaurant – will come and pick me up from the city to the little village.

One of these days I had a dinner with some girls from Hong-Kong sitting outside in the Sun at campus…very nice evening, followed by a very late walk to the lake to see the Sunset at 22.15)…we did not make it in time but the colors at the horizon were still amazing.

Yesterday morning I went with some people to IKEA to have the brunch they sell for 69kr. I did not eat it yesterday but it looked wonderful and very good so I will definitely try it on the day of my 20th birthday! Replacing the trial of KFC which will open exactly on the 22nd! Going out from the restaurant we went around IKEA and I bought a candle (a-must-to!) and some paper boxes to move from the apartment. So yesterday afternoon after a little siesta of JUST two hours more or less, I started to pack a bit. In the evening I went to campus and played Chinese chess with the German girls.

But what about today? I woke up around 8 and had breakfast, continued to pack a bit and then biked to the second hand market – I learned a new term today since this is called also flea market! I got lost a bit of course before finding the place…the market was pretty big and there were nice things and very cheap! I totally spent 30 kr – around 3 euros – and bought six books and a little painting with a Japanese girlturning to the viewer, very relaxing picture! The books I bought are from Swedish, Finnish and Icelandic authors, all in Swedish so that I can train a lot the language. I think I will pack them very soon since I still have other books to finish. Flea market are definitely good to buy cheap books! If you are interested about the books I read, you can just check my page on Goodreads here 🙂

When I biked back I passed by the museum in the city centre and I went in to visit some exhibitions, but unfortunately the historical part – the biggest and usually most intresting one – was closed so I jsut walked in very fast and used the bathroom! When I was unlocking my bike to go home, I saw how nice it would have been to just lay on the grass in the sun for a bit, and so I did for half a hour. When I biked home I was very tired and with a bit of headache and the last uphill is been as difficult as it never had. So I slept 2 hours – I am really tired when the Swedish summer arrives! – and had dinner later…and went to campus to say goodbye to some girls leaving tomorrow.They prepared food like spring rolls, sushi and coconut milk with some riceballs in it…very tasty! Something that really surprised me is that one girl from Hong Kong that I know is not good in using chop sticks! And most of the Asian people I know do not like soy sauce because too salty!

I am a bit excited to see Italy playing against Belgium tomorrow ( it is the first match), but especially playing against Sweden on Friday! It is very intresting to watch a match with people from different cultures…and yes, I am a real culture addicted-geek!

Btw…meeting all these people from Asia during these two semesters really made me change my mind about visiting Asia. Now it is in the third position of the ranking of places I want to visit…Ireland, Czech Republic and Asia! Mmmmhhh…just need the money, but I am very positive about finding a job in Malmö! So good luck to me!

Just a thing more about today’s day. I met a guy I know who is from Pakistan and is fasting right now, and what more? He is actually following the sweidhs time – I am surprised because I read that people were admitted to eventually follow the time at La Mecca if the days were getting too long in some part of the world – as it is in Sweden. But he actually told me that he is fasting for 20 hours – so 2.15 to 22.25 today for example. I really enjoy to get to know cultural and religious realities by really meeting people and not just by reading things on the internet orin books!

I am gonna get some sleep now, I’ll see you soon!!!!

Goodnight!