Focus on Sweden

Continuing in the Euro 2012 travel series, today’s games are Sweden vs France and England vs Ukraine.

As I’ve already covered England and France (Ukraine is one of the host countries), that just leaves another trip to Scandinavia (we visited Denmark already, remember).

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Today’s spotlight is on Sweden.

Am I one of the few people who has been to Sweden and not visited the capital, Stockholm?

We had sailed across on the ferry from Grenaa (Denmark) to Varberg on our hitch-hiking tour from Scandinavia to the South of France.

Not only was the lift from Varberg to Gothenburg a little cramped in the tiny MG car, but it soon became psychologically uncomfortable too.

The driver seemed a little too casual driving with his trouser fly openly revealing, and one arm slung over the back of Andrew’s chair; to Danny, he kept glancing in the rear-view mirror.

Gothenburg Harbour
Gothenburg Harbour (Tom De Mulder)

As the boys had nowhere to stay in Gothenburg, the use of the driver’s flat was offered. Of course he said that he would hardly be there himself.

The man could well have been genuine, but the boys used the excuse of the long daylight hours and said they wanted to head up the coast.

This stuttered attempt at a diplomatic refusal turned out the light in the Swede.

Conversation ceased, he sulked in silence, and stopped the car shortly after; relinquishing any further responsibility to the youngsters.

Once out of Gothenburg, the lifts were short; the passing traffic local; and rides were peppered with plenty of exercise. It was supposed to be the main Gothenburg to Oslo thoroughfare, but the road was empty.

The only thing to do was to walk and admire the changing scenery; to turn a corner and find another hill; and climb the hill to be rewarded with another view.

Midsummer Eve

On our hitch-hiking adventure in the northern lands, we spent Midsummer Eve at a log cabin on a lake; somewhere near Kongsvinger, in Norway.

To be honest, I can’t remember too much about the evening apart from thinking I was seeing the sun rise before it had even set and that there was copious amounts of alcohol involved; before and after a boat trip on the lake.

The barn dance, deep in a forest, was joined by a group of competitive, vodka-drinking Finns and I’m pretty sure the whole event was livened up with a spot of rain; ideal for a little mud-dancing.

This Swedish Midsummer for Dummies video seems about right.

Next time I visit Sweden, my first port of call will be Stockholm, before venturing across the border to Finland and up to the lakes.

Visit SwedenVisit Stockholm:
Official tourist information for a visit to Sweden and (cough) the ‘Capital of Scandinavia’.

Short URL: http://tnot.es/SEfocus

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