Monday, September 22, 2014

Stockholm, I'm coming back!!!

This is the view from breakfast on the cruise ship as we arrive into Stockholm, 
not bad to enjoy with your Eggs Benedict, eh?

Okay, this is a short post.
I just did NOT get enough time here.
It left me wanting, and planning for a return trip and that is not a bad way to feel about a place you’ve visited, right?
A couple of people others told us their favorite city was Stockholm.   
Favorite City in the world? 
That’s a tall order…. 
I’d be hard pressed to chose ONE… but now I know that Stockholm would have to be in the top 5 for me too.

We had only one day to enjoy the city, so unfortunately chose a “Hop On, Hop Off” bus in the city…. It was a dreadful mistake as the buses in were few and far between and the recorded commentary was, frankly, boring!  However, after deciding to ignore the droning in our ears and instead just sit and watch the sights of the 7 islands that make up Stockholm pass by us.
First stop?  Vasa Museum… 
Yeah, I struggled with pretending to be interested in visiting an almost 400 year old sunken ship. Yawn. However, my husband is unfailingly enthusiastic (or at least patient) about seeing what I wanted to see, so GO I went with a smile plastered on my face.  It doesn’t take long to gain excitement for the intact ruin of a Swedish “Titanic” that only sailed 40 minutes before sinking in a deep harbor outside of the city. It was designed too narrow and too tall for the king of Sweden, who insisted on the doomed dimensions.   

What makes this artifact so amazing is how intact it is after so many years.  The cold water that is not too salty off the coast (salty waters have more timber crunching microbes apparently) left his beauty in tact.  It has hundreds of ornate carvings befitting to a royal vessel and many cannons and other artillery.   Left- Is a reproduction of a dog and lion carving repainted in the original colors. We could see the real one still intact on the back end of the boat.  They found traces of paints still attached, so were able to recreate a wall of all the carvings.

Most interesting to me what the human remains, including bones and tatters of clothing (!!!) that had been recreated by forensic artist/scientists to show how they must have looked   

I also got some great pictures of the cooking arrangements for the ONE cook for the crew of 445!  What a job… I sure hope there were some scullery maids/dudes to help. 

Look at how cool these almost perfect dishes are, after almost 400 years in the cold water of a Swedish channel.


Outside the boat museum, we waited and waited for the bus, finally deciding to hoof it towards the city on our own feet,, at least we’d get to see something that way, right?

We walked and enjoyed the sunshine, churches and fountains, finally catching the silly bus at a later stop.  

We disembarked at the Old Town “Gambla Stan” and walked through the crooked, cobbled streets checking out the shops, the sights and maybe a pub too.   

Okay, so the pub shown below maybe a English, but it had the prerequisites for travel fun; timely, cute, outdoor seating on a beautiful day and local beer!

We didn’t see everything, but we enjoyed the sights and agreed that we needed to come back again to enjoy this city at a more leisurely pace.

One other thing about leaving Stockholm that day was the absolute beauty of the small islands as we left port.  It reminded me of the San Juan's in Washington State, so beautiful!

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