Saturday, June 7, 2014

Sverige, Min Sverige

True to my last post, the Squashist did indeed go to Sweden, a/k/a Sverige, and had 8 great days poking all around Stockholm, which is a beautiful, glorious city. If you have never been there and have the time and wherewithal to make the trip, make it.

Above, a view of the Storkyrkan -- the big church.... 

I decided to not bring my squash kit because I realized I was going to be walking around all day, literally for miles and miles. I did spy two typically gorgeous Svenska girls with squash rackets sticking out of their backpacks, so they play the game in Stockholm for sure. 

Squash does have a way of following me, though. I went to the Army Museum, which tells the amazing tale of how Sweden, a once warlike country that got into numerous wars with its neighbors -- particularly the Danes, who were responsible for the truly bloody "Stockholm bloodbath" -- eventually realized all that fighting wasn't really getting them anywhere, and as a society they have renounced war ever since. It's been 200 hundred years....

The museum exhibition talks about the role of the Swedish military in keeping the peace in trouble spots all over the world, and those missions have sometimes put their military in some very hot spots indeed. 

But they had a section towards the end where they mentioned that peace-keeping can be either very exciting -- being shot at, for example -- or boring as hell, and so they mentioned a few of the ways these overseas Swedish personnel tried to amuse themselves. In this exhibit, I spied the following: 

Hard to see, I know, but this is the picture of the winning cup for a squash tournament among UN emergency personnel. It seems Sweden beat Malaysia for the title (date unknown). 

I hope to be back next year with my family, and this time I'll take my squash stuff.