Summer traditions, Stockholm

There was so much fun stuff to do this weekend, it felt almost like vacation. It was time for three of Stockholm’s annual traditions. Each had a different flavor and I would have a hard time if I had to compare one with the other 🙂

First-up on Saturday, there was the Stockholm Zombie Walk 2015, an annual cosplay event where you can register to walk as a zombie. For those who do not want to be smeared with ketchup or other fake blood replacements, you can always track their route and get a good look at the creative make up. There is some gory imagery to be seen, some of the work is so impressive, it must take them a while to get the whole costume ready. Some make it a family outing, with kiddy zombies in tow; they are simply adorable! Photographers, both professional & amatuers, have a field day. I got some great shots from last year’s zombie walk, and was able to top it up with more ‘killer’ shots this time.

In the evening, there was another annual Stockholm tradition – the Midnattsloppet, or Midnight Run, a 10km run which hosted nearly 38,000 runners this year. That’s massive, no?! Mr.A made me super proud by being one of them 😉 Before you ask, no, I’m not much of a runner myself, so I was one of the bystanders, cheering for those who did the real job! The atmosphere was carnival-like – different bands played at every kilometer milestone, onlookers cheered along the full circuit, there wwas even a masquerade team that ran in costumes. The night reminded me of a college festival where the air would be charged with energy. It was also very heartening to see the spirit of the runners, as they encouraged one another to keep going, some even slowing down their own pace and hold hands to spur a friend or partner.

Then on Sunday came the Bokbordet, proclaimed as the World’s Longest Book Stall. All along Stockhom’s busy Drottninggatan street,  booksellers line up tables and vend books of any genre under the sun. Still better, most of the books are really cheap, starting from 10 Sek, that’s €1.06 or $1.18 by today’s rate. Now, find me someone that doesn’t think that’s awesome! Although most of the books are second hand, I never complain since they are always in good condition. English or other foreign language books might be rarer than those in Swedish, but I have managed to find a handful of interesting titles every time. It’s been a tradition for Mr.A & me to check out the book stalls every year, ever since we arrived in Stockholm, so that’s four years in a row for us. The book fest does own a special corner somewhere in my heart ❤

That was my fun weekend, how was yours?

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Keep your cool!

Keep your cool this summer with some infused water. I gave it a shot with bits of strawberries and strips of cucumbers, allowing the fruit to sit in a bottle of water for a few hours to get their flavors out. Super refreshing!

I am surely going to try out a few more flavors. Perhaps lemons, oranges, basil, mint, or a combination of these. What’s your go-to drink this summer?

Runner, runner

Mr.A has signed up for a 5 km run next month & it’s about time he started preparing for it. Yesterday, while he ran, I biked alongside & we found ourselves at the Ulriksdal Slott (palace) which is a stone’s throw away from our home. I have never been inside the castle per se, but the grounds are great for rides or runs or walks with paths running around the pretty flower gardens and around the placid Lake Edsviken. The grounds also house several neat little out-houses and a couple of beautiful chapels. The castle and lake can be reached by a short 10 min ride on the pendeltåg (commuter train) from Stockholm T-Central (the central station) to Ulriksdal station, followed a walk or a bus ride from there. 

Glad Midsommar!

Glad Midsommar to all my Swedish friends! For others, Midsommar is the celebration of the summer solstice, the longest day of the year in the northern hemisphere. Today I met up with a bunch of cool people, thanks to Jocelyn from ‘TheDailyJoce’, to join in the celebrations at Vitabergparken. The maypole was set up in the amphitheater, there was food & drinks on offer, and some fun games for kids, too. But the parts I liked best was the flower wreaths and crowns and maypole dancing to cute & funny traditional songs. The weather threatened a bit of a downpour but thankfully held off. There was even some sunshine to accompany the song & dance for a brief spell. It might still be below 15°C in Stockholm, but it’s official now – Summer is here! Glad Midsommar!

The Maypole

Maypoles & hair-wreaths

Everyone having a good time, despite the spoilsport weather

 

Dancing around

Gathering wild flowers

Gathering wild flowers

Flower power!

With Jocelyn from ‘TheDailyJoce’