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Monday, September 19, 2011

Britt Sommar

The chill arrived a bit early for me in mid-August but alas, Mr. Warm Sunshine showed up for a couple of more weekends in September.  Saturday, September 10 was the only Saturday in September that we were free from church obligations so we were thrilled when a sunny forecast came our way.  We called some friends, planned a picnic, grabbed the dog and headed out for the Finnmaster.  In my heart, I knew this could be our last good day on the Stockholm waterways before we put her to bed on the 8th of October.  If it was our final outing, if proved to be a real stunner.  Warmer than expected, calm water, beautiful skies, gorgeous picnic perch.  We headed south to Saltsjöbaden because the southern canal is beautiful and narrow and our friends had never been that way via water before.  We love that area.  Once you hit the open sea, the entire southern archipelago opens up to you and there are countless places to tie up and enjoy a fun afternoon.  The island we ended up on quickly became a favorite.  I was wondering why we hadn't been there before and then I realized that it is likely a very popular place to tie up so often, the good spots were already taken!  In fact, as we pulled out, another boat was waiting in the water to pull into our spot!On this special Saturday, it was ours to enjoy.  We unpacked the goods, fired up the grill, and soaked in every moment of warmth and sunlight.  While the men worked on the grill, my friend and I took a short walk and found a small sandy beach and it was so warm that one could've swam, but once again, it was only Tanner who ventured into the chilling waters.  Soon the delicious smell of bratwurst being grilled lured us back to the picnic where we feasted on a bounty of food.  We ended our time on the island with a quick walk where mushrooms abounded and all manner of tundra and foliage surrounded us.  We took a spin around Saltsjöbaden and saw these awesome bath houses with decks in the direct, warm sunshine with access to the water.  The clientele seemed to be mostly Swedish Seniors and a strictly nude policy was firmly in place. I loved seeing them sunning themselves like seals, enjoying the natural environment in their natural environment! Quite a way to spend the afternoon.  The autumn color had not quite yet begun but the rich green of a fruitful summer dazzled.
One of our friends had to be at work in Gamla Stan in the late afternoon so we decided the best course of action was to simply take the boat downtown and drop him off!  While heading down the Djurgården kanal, we saw the Duck Sauna boat!  This is a sauna/boat you can rent!  It is always hilarious when you see it floating by.  Dropping William at work extended our outing and gave him a different way of getting to work!  Everyone enjoyed driving boat, finding the fastest speeds and taking in the scenery.  We were out from 10.30-18.00 and when we finally docked, we all felt a great sense of satisfaction and beauty filling our souls.  Soon enough we'll be walking on the ice covered waters that our boat traversed and these wonderful days of summer will be a lingering memory until next spring. I always miss the open sea and this wonderful way of enjoying the breathtaking beauty that surrounds Stockholm when the Finnmaster makes its way to land and takes a break from the joy it provides us.