Fascinating Things About Swedes

There are many fascinating things about Swedes. Here are a few.

When the Sun is out they find it irresistible to lift their heads and point their nose to the Sun, even if it is freezing.

Swedes walk very fast. Twice as fast as I. And they do not slow down when walking on ice-covered sidewalks. I hate walking on ice because I have slipped and fallen more than once. But Swedes are fearless, and apparently sure-footed.


Converse All-Stars

Converse All-stars are considered sub-par shoes in the US, but here they are almost a fashion essential for high school and college age girls, and some guys. And very expensive Ray-Ban sunglasses are all the rage. I’ve seen them advertised from 2,500 – 4,500 SEK (divide by 6.8 for the dollar equivalent).

When I was in Sweden 28 years ago I was impressed that at bus stops folks formed a single line and entered the bus in an orderly manner. Forget that now, it is chaos. It is more like Chicago’s pushing and shoving to get on board.

It is a solid rule that all cars must yield to pedestrians at a marked street crossing. Don’t trust it because most cars do not yield. And on the main street in Valdemarsvik the 30 kph speed limit is a mere suggestion – more like 50 – 70 kph.

Swedes are fairly long-lived, which is amazing given the excessive salt content of their food. Even Marie was amazed when we came back here.