Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Where did it all come from?!



The big move down to Gothenburg begins tomorrow and every room in our flat has a big pile of boxes like this one, and we're still not even half way through packing!! I don't know where all this stuff keeps appearing from! We've got several friends roped into helping us load up the van tomorrow so hopefully it won't be too painful. Its a 4 days weekend (yay!) so luckily we've got plenty of time to go backwards and forwards moving things and cleaning the old flat. It was almost easier moving from England to Sweden than now having to move within Sweden, as when we moved here the removal company did all of the packing and unpacking, while we just sat around pointing where we wanted everything!

I'm not sure how long it will take to re-connect the internet, but hopefully it won't take too long before its up and running again.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

'Eu-eu-euro-vision Pardy!'

Saturday saw the return of our second annual Eurovision Song Contest Party! The rules are simple: pick a flag to choose which country you will represent while wearing the fur hat (don't ask!)...





...then watch the song contest cheering along your appropriate countries. When it comes to the voting round if your country has scored the top 12 points you have to vote someone else in the room to 'drink the drink!'. There are 38 countries voting so 38 rounds of 'drinking the drink!'. As we had 12 people this year it was much less messy than last time we celebrated Eurovision with only 6 of us!


Then end the night with some moonwalking!


Unfortunately neither the UK or Sweden won this years contest, with the grand prize going to Finland's death metal group Lordi.

As you can see they are not the usual happy, smiley, cheesy Eurovision winners so I think this result has upset a few people, especially the die-hard fans over here in Sweden! To watch their winning entry click here.

Swedish veteran Carola (this is her 3rd Eurovision final) came in 5th place and can be seen here. The entry from the UK was embarrassingly awful and hardly suprising that it didn't win, but if you really want to see it click here.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Parcels, running and crowns!

When Daniel and I took another car load of boxes down to our new flat this weekend and I was greeted by a big parcel from Connie. Inside was a wonderful housewarming present of placemats and napkins (which were put to use later in the evening), a great wine cooler which will definitely get used a lot and is perfect for taking out on picnics, plus a little scented pillow which Connie had made. Thank you so much for the thoughtful present Connie and for the card wishing us luck in our new flat - I'm sure it won't be long before it feels like home.



On Saturday afternoon we headed into town to watch GöteborgsVarvet which is a 21km half marathon through town. Below is a shot of the leader at the 18km mark, but sadly he didn't win the race as he took a wrong turn in the last 200metres and was overtaken! Oops!



Over 28,000 people took part in the race, but next year there might be 2 more as Daniel and I are thinking of entering! Watch this space!




From our kitchen and bedroom window we can see this building with a sparkly crown on top, so on Sunday we set off to investigate what it was...


After clambering up the hill to the building we found out it was infact an old miltary fortress called Skansen Kronan (Crown). The fortress was built in the late 17th century to protect Gothenburg from invading Danes, but is now used as a military museum. The view from the fortress was quite impressive and it was interesting to look back and see our flat...



Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Waterfalls and camping in the flat!



On Saturday we took Daniel's parents to see the waterfall just across the road from our flat. The waterfall is dammed up nowadays (photo above) and boats use the man-made canal instead, but during the summer the sluice gates are opened and the water is released down the falls again. It is mainly a tourist attraction but it also powers the local powerstation.
When the gates are opened over 300,000 litres rush through every second so it is easy to see why the canal and lock system were built!




While checking the times for the waterfall on the internet I also came across this video all about where we live if anyone is interested - we thought it was quite amusing they made a tourist film about such a small town!

After taking Daniel's parents to the airport for their flight back home we headed to our new flat in Gothenburg where we camped out for the night! We've not taken any of our furniture down there yet so we had a duvet on the floor as a sofa and slept on an air-matress with sleeping bags, but it was great to be there and start to plan where everything will go when we move in properly.

I had yesterday off work, so spent a nice lazy day in the sunshine exploring our new neighbourhood. Below is a shot of Haga Nygata which is a pedestrian street lined with interesting shops and cafes just 2 minutes walk from our new flat. It was so nice just to wander round in the sunshine planning which bars and resturants we will be visiting when we move there!


Friday, May 05, 2006

Smögen

Spring seems to have forgotten to come to the West of Sweden as we have gone straight from winter to full blown summer! Last week we were all wrapped up in big winter coats and hats with the very last of the snow melting, and this week there is suddenly baking hot summer sunshine and we're wearing shorts and t-shirts! All very strange but we're not complaining!

To make the most of our new summer weather we went to Smögen with Daniel's parents for a BBQ. Smögen is a beautiful little fishing village on the West coast and is one of our favourite places in Sweden. It is made up of small brightly painted fishing huts...



...and a wooden landing stage (apparently the longest in Europe!) which is lined by boats on one side and little gift shops and cafes on the other.




After a wander round the shops we settled on a spot right on top of the rocks for a BBQ and a spot of sunbathing!!




The rocks in Smögen are amazingly soft and smooth, which is due to the Ice Age glaciers melting and the water running down over the rocks for so many years. You often find a little stone in the middle of a big hole in the rocks - the holes are called 'Giants Cauldrons' and were caused by huge stones rolling round and round on the rocks as the glaciers melted.



(Marie - be sure to stop here on your trip up the West Coast!)

Monday, May 01, 2006

On the move!!


Hooray!! We have finally got the keys to our new flat and moved the first load of boxes down this weekend. We've got both our flats for the whole of May so we'll take down our furniture gradually and then properly move at the end of the month.

Everything was as nice as we had remembered - Daniel is excited because he has got a nice big kitchen to 'create' in and I'm happy because there are huge wardrobes and lots of cupboards - we're easily pleased! Plus a bath to soak in after a long day!

I think I needed an estate agent's wide angle camera in order to fit the rooms into the photo, but you get the general idea!




Daniel's parents are here to visit for the week, so it was nice to show them the new flat. We also spent a very wet, cold afternoon watching the Chalmers Cortège which is the graduation parade for students from Chalmers University. It was pouring with rain all afternoon and all the students looked a bit miserable marching round in the rain!