The Wandering Swede

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Glad Pask Everyone! Easter break is coming up this week and we have been blessed with beautiful weather here in Uppsala. We had temperatures in the upper sixties which meant we headed for the roof of our building with the BBQ and football. Duncan, Jim, and I even threw on our shorts and flip flops.

A lot has been happening in the last month. I've been bar tending several nights a week and had a pretty intense Viking History course. But now the final has been written and I've got the weekend off to relax and finally update the old blog. For the month of April I'm taking a really uplifting course titled, "Genocide and Mass Violence in the modern world." Should be...fun, but I know a lot of people in the course, so at least we can all be miserable together! But there is no final exam, just a paper! So I guess that means I've taken my last test here!

We get a week off for Easter and we haven't quite figured out what to do with ourselves. Jim is heading to Italy to visit some friends from last term, so Duncan and I thought we might take the train to Oslo for a couple of days. Planning for the European invasion is coming along, though slower than we've all expected. Whew, I'm beat! Busy night at the bar! More to come soon.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Hey Everybody! Well the time has come. You've waited for it and heard rumors for the last couple of months and HERE IT IS: European invasion 2007. The plan is all coming together and the most key element, the plane ticket home, has been purchased out of Madrid on the 28th of June. The above map shows our route along with a black X for the cities we will be stopping in. So that is 21 days to see Copenhagen, Berlin, Munich, Vienna, Venice, Rome, Nice, Barcelona, and Madrid. We've begun the itinerary with the help of Fromer's guide to Europe and a couple of Lonely Planets. Speaking of which if any of you readers have ever been to any of these cities and know of any "must sees" please let me know. I'm really looking foreword to a whole list of things...and here is that list:

1. Attempting German, a language I haven't spoken since my junior year in high school.
2. It has been decided that our football will be accompanying us on the trip, so train football should be interesting to watch...and play.
3. Sauerkraut.
4. Beer. "Ich heter gerne ein bier, danke"
5. According to Duncan, Austrian women are the most beautiful in all of europe.
6. Neuchwanstein Castle
7. Saying "ciao" so much that everyone wants to punch me by the time we get to france.
8. Gelato "Gradirei il gelato, grazie."
9. Watching Jim squirm because we have forbidden him from calling the french "cheese eating surrender monkeys."
10. French wine. "je voudrais votre vin plus fin, merci."
11. The South of France in late June. Oh, I'm going to be so pale.
12. Bullfight. (Yes yes, cruel to animals, i know. But I've been reading Hemingway and it seems like a really important cultural experience. Not to mention we'll be in Spain during the siesta!) "uno cervesa, por favor."
13. The four days of straight sleep as soon as I get home. "A beer please."


We've got a huge list of things left to do such as obtain our train passes, read up on the travel literature, set up the itinerary, train Jim to not insult the french, throw my bike off of the roof, and the list goes on.

To be honest not much has been happening here in Uppsala since I last updated. I'm taking a course on Swedish history during the Viking period, which I find quite fascinating and I've been working at the pub a couple of days every week. We've still got a lot of snow on the ground but the temperature is slowly starting to rise, which is nice to be honest. I think the worst of the Swedish winter is over and now we wait for the thaw. Jim and I had a great conversation about how nice it will be to hang out on the balcony and grill steaks when it gets warm...so that's about one week before we leave on our trip. Ah well.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

We made scones. I lost control of the whipped cream.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Witness you nonbelievers! An actual entire meal being eaten by college students! I know, I was a little taken aback as well. Well, because Duncan and I had woken up around 2 in the afternoon due to the fact that we stayed up until 7 in the morning watching the Superbowl, we decided around 9 in the evening to make dinner. Half because we were hungry but also because we were bored out of our minds. So this picture provides proof that we cooked up some chicken tika masala with rice, fresh bread and brie, and the crowning achievement: we baked home made naan bread! That's right. I baked.

To be completely honest there is not much else to report. A cold front has come in so we're hovering just above zero these days and we have a fresh layer of snow. So Wednesday night sledding will probably continue unabated. Well, Jim is cooking dinner tonight, so I'm off! I hope everything is well at home!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Hello Everyone! I'm back in Sverige and we have SNOW! I had about 3 hours of dry pavement and ungraveled streets, then BAM! It now snows every couple of days so at least it is always white and beautiful. My bike is still locked up at the train station downtown because it is under a foot and a half of snow and I'm pretty sure the lock is frozen solid. So I've been doing a lot of walking.

This term begins with a class on political theory, which to be honest I find very intriguing! The professor is very knowledgeable and I can tell that he cares about what he is teaching. Unfortunately I don't have a whole lot of background in political science so I'm going to have to do a bit of extra work to keep up with everyone, but hey whats new?

The Super bowl is this coming weekend so my friends and I have a table reserved at O'learys pub. I'm going to wear my Seahawks jersey to spite the Stupid bears being there in our place. Other than that I don't have much news for everyone. I'd love to hear from anyone if you've got a free moment! karlpete@u.washington.edu

Friday, January 05, 2007

Hej alla! I hope the holidays went well for everyone! It was very nice to have the family visit in Sweden. We had a really great time both in Uppsala and Stockholm. Instead of coming back to Yakima right away like a good son would, I went immediately from the airport to the U district to see friends and celebrate the new year. Granted, I was not very coherent once we hit about 11 that evening, but hey, it was worth it.

I'm home now in Yakima hanging out with mom and dad which has been very nice. They keep saying that I'm bored but I'm really not. I've been doing a bit of reading, watching (beautiful) football, and (as you can see from the picture) I went skiing today by myself up at White Pass. It was great because all of the kids were in school and all of the people my age were working so it was Karl and the pensioners up on the trails this morning.

I'm going to be heading for Seattle over the weekend to visit with my advisor in the Scandinavian department and watch the Seahawks game with Seth. Its nice to be back, even for only a few days.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

We're having a good time as a reunited family! Can you tell?!? Just wanted to let everyone know that we've migrated down to Stockholm and are really enjoying ourselves. I've been trying to add new photos every day for people to see in my photobucket album. Check them out if you have time.

Yesterday we drove south for three hours to Ukna, a small town outside of Vastervick, to visit some (very) distant family members. It is quite humorous actually because both sides of my dad's family live within roughly two kilometers of one another. short trip. Unfortunately I was forced into using my Swedish in front of my family but I think it helped to convince my parents that their tuition money isn't going down the drain.

We're heading for the Vasa ship museum tomorrow morning and the national art museum in the afternoon. We head back to the states at 3am on Sunday and should be back in the afternoon. Seasons greetings to everyone at home!