Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sweatpants Across Europa: Sweden

A decade ago, I applied for a work visa in Britain and used it to work and travel for several months. This is that story.  To begin at the beginning, go here.

Gothenburg, specifically. We quickly found out that our “all inclusive” EurRail ticket actually meant that we still had to pay up to half of the price of a regular ticket plus a rather large “reservation fee.” EurRail was still a pretty good deal, but not quite the bargain we were expecting it to be.

Once again we were in a new city without a place to stay. We tried a couple locations that looked close on the map but turned out to be a hearty walk from the train station. Gothenburg was a very hilly city so bargain hunting with all our personal possessions on our back was not a good idea. We walked up and down a steep incline of hostels until it became clear that cheap lodging did not come easy in Scandinavia. The hostel we chose was white, square, and very sterile-looking. It had a public kitchen and a lobby with a television showing reruns of Golden Girls dubbed in Swedish. Good enough, we decided.

Gothenburg turned out to be another city we zipped through at lightning speed. Most of our sightseeing centered on the Maritime museum, which was a collection of ships and submarines in the harbor. We walked through Hage, the oldest neighborhood of Gothenburg. It was full of red and orange-painted wood buildings with exterior support beams resembling lumber exoskeletons.  

Gothenburg was a fine city but not dynamic enough to slow down our attention-deficit disorder tour, so it wasn’t long before we grabbed the next train out of town in search of…