The turtle and the strawberry were two of the first Swedish words we learned. We made them the title of our blog because they signify how esoteric and incomplete our knowledge of Sweden is. We are going there to live for a year and we have no idea what to expect.
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Alla hjärtans dag = All Heart's Day
Alla hjärtans dag. All Heart's Day (aka Valentine's Day).
Though the Swedes seem to love holidays, Valentine's Day isn't much of a holiday. It seems to be a day to buy chocolate and flowers, maybe to go out for dinner. There are signs of it around, but unlike something like Santa Lucia Day, this seems to be a much less celebrated day around here.
Apparently commercial marketers (I think flower sellers) sought to promote it somewhere around the 1960s, and it's slowly been catching on as a holiday across the Nordic countries (I'm not saying Scandinavia deliberately- another post on what countries are actually considered "Scandinavia").
The kids could buy lollipops at school, but no need to bring in cards, exchange candy, or anything else.
In my family, Valentine's Day means its my brother's birthday-- happy birthday, Josh!
Chris and I usually avoid celebrating our relationship on Valentine's Day... but we did inadvertently by him giving a talk in Uppsala in the geography department today, so we romantically took the train to work together. Does that count? I attended his talk and managed a couple of photos.
I also normally don't come to Uppsala on Fridays, but another PhD student defended her dissertation today: "Settling the Scales: Justice in International Environmental Negotiations and Beyond" by Annkatrin Tritschoks. She rocked it in front of an audience of about 60 people. She's hosting a dinner tonight that I'm actually going to attend... perhaps a report on that later.
Some scenes from my wandering around Uppsala. These are from inside the Uppsala University's main administration building.
Also a highlight: it was sunny today (dark now at 5 PM), but the light was gorgeous. Lots of people standing or sitting in different puddles of sunshine.
Random building in Uppsala, followed by scenes from along the Fyris River through Uppsala.