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Published: December 8th 2013
This morning we resumed our efforts to travel to Stockholm. After a buffet breakfast at the Comfort Inn we checked out and negotiated the icy footpath and road between us and the station. Despite the treacherous footing we managed to reach the station without either of us slipping over and cracking a skull. At the station the departures board had trains for Stockholm listed to depart at 8.40am and 9.11am so we rushed out onto platform 5 to see the 8.11am train - departing at 8.40am - just as we set foot on the platform. Oh well, we were aiming for the 9.11am train anyway so nothing lost!
So off to platform 10 to wait for the 9.11am train. Woo hoo, there was a train at the platform and we could board it. Since we had been told pretty much, first in best dressed we secured ourselves seats with a table and a good view. But then, there was an announcement in Swedish which was not repeated in English and people started getting off the train. What the ... Once again, relying on a fellow passenger to translate, the deal was that if you didn't have a seat booked for
the 9.11am Saturday train, you had to get off and board the train set (seven wagons plus bistro car) that would be attached to the front of the train set currently at the platform.
Damn, we put our coats and hats back on and wandered off along the platform in the snow to wait for the train set for the passengers whose trains were cancelled over the last two days. The wagons arrived and were hooked up to the other set of wagons and still we waited in the snow for the wagons to be unlocked. Eventually the wagons were unlocked and we were able to board the train. Even better, at 9.20am the train pulled out of the station and we were on our way to Stockholm.
There was free wi-fi on the train so it was a good opportunity to blog a bit, read a bit and sleep a bit - in between admiring the snow covered Swedish landscape adjacent to the train track. The fir trees dusted with snow looked very picturesque. By the time we pulled into Stockholm Central Station at 3.30pm it was already nearly dark. We have been working our way gradually
north so that, combined with the fact that the days are getting shorter anyway as we approach the winter solstice, means that we are seeing less and less daylight each day!
We found the Tourist Information booth at the station and bought 48 hours Stockholm Cards that provide us with free public transport and museum access for the next two days. Then it was out into the cold (-3°!!) to find a taxi to take us to '4 Trappor' the accommodation that Bernie booked in Stockholm. We had to carry our bags up four flight of stairs where our host Elizabeth met us and showed us into our mini-apartment. Really, really lovely, what a shame that we have missed out on a night here due to being stranded in Malmö!
We asked Elisabeth if there was a laundromat nearby. Elisabeth said that Sweden doesn't really have laundromats, but we were welcome to put a load of washing through her machine - just ring the doorbell next door when we were ready to put it on. We sorted our laundry and I popped next door to put it on. Elisabeth asked if we had tried glögg, the Swedish hot
wine drink. I said no, but we had glühwein in Germany. She told be to get my husband and come in for a glass of glögg with her and her husband, Sven. While Elizabeth warmed the glögg she put out a bowl of raisins and a bowl of almonds. Glögg is traditionally enjoyed with raisins and/or almonds soaked in it. Although somewhat sweeter than glühwein, I enjoyed it more.
We ventured out in the cold to find an ATM and check out some of the local restaurants for somewhere to eat later on. There were so many places to choose from. Even if we stayed a week we couldn't sample all the restaurants! After returning to our room for a while to thaw out we decided to try the Greek restaurant, Faros. We both enjoyed a really, really good mixed souvlaki dinner made with New Zealand lamb!
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