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Monday, April 25, 2011

Stockholm is Springing to Life

We've had a string of warm, sunny days here in Stockholm.  The entire personality of the city and its inhabitants has changed!  I was able to wear shorts all weekend and I gotta tell ya, I'm a totally different person when the warm weather hits.  I have had loads to do over the past several weeks, being a pastor and it being Lent, Holy Week and Easter after all and on Saturday I had errands to run, preparations to be made, a dog to walk and friends to visit.  I woke up at 6.30 and hit the ground running.  Usually by mid-afternoon on days like these, I'm totally worn out and ready for a long winter's nap.  But the sunshine and beautiful air of Saturday kept me going and going and going.  I got a lot done and was ready to wake up to a beautiful Easter morning.
Yesterday was a public holiday in Stockholm and it was gorgeous.  Our boat doesn't go into the water until Saturday so we did something that we haven't done in ages...we packed a picnic and headed out to one of the city islands, Skeppsholmen, on foot.  (Holmen means islet.)  The city of Stockholm is actually made up of 8 or 14 (depending on how you count it!) different islands and it is so much fun to cross bridges, enjoy the water views and find a sunny spot to relax.  I do not grow tired of looking at this beautiful city with its amazing views on the water front.  What a joy to walk through a quiet city, with the sun heating us up.  Tanner swam, we found a sunny spot, and enjoyed a wonderful picnic from the leftover bounty of our Easter table.  After we had napped and relaxed and taken in a bit of people watching, we walked over to another island called Kastellholmen.  Beautiful buildings adorn this small island in the middle of the city bay.  Tanner was roasting in the afternoon heat...about 75 degrees (22C)  which is really, really warm even in the middle of summer let alone the end of April!  He had no problems jumping into the icy waters of the Baltic!Eventually we wandered back home, taking in the lovely flower pots that people had planted. 
The city is beginning to bloom...the moment when spring becomes complete however is when the cherry trees on Kungsträgården pop.  I am watching and waiting with eager expectation.  It is indeed one my favorite moments of spring in Stockholm.