Monday, July 7, 2014

Our first July 4th in Stockholm

Hammarby Sjöstad sailboats from Skansbron  | Our first July 4th abroad on afeathery*nest  |
Being abroad for your home country's holidays is a little peculiar. Thanksgiving will probably be infinitely more so for me than July 4th, but still. Even though it was just a normal Friday here, it still felt odd that no one had the day off and planned to barbecue and go to a pool party or listen to patriotic serenades and see the fireworks that night. To claim a little bit of Americana for myself, I ironed out the flounces on a red summer dress and wore it around the city all day.

Riding my Stålhästen in red  |  Our first July 4th abroad on afeathery*nest  |
Stockholm stadsbibliotek kort (City of Stockholm Library Card)  |  Our first July 4th abroad on afeathery*nest  |
R went off to work (on his first Independence Day since becoming an American citizen!) and I went off to school, where I got a little extra red when our class took a field trip to the main branch of the Stockholm Library to get library cards. You know how I feel about libraries and in particular how in love I was with the NYPL, so leaving that afternoon with my shiny new red card red felt like a nice rite of passage. (I also came home with three books from the special SFI/"easy-to-read" section, but I may have been a little overexcited/confident/zealous with that checkout.)

Saturday we were both free so we headed across the bridge from Hammarby Sjöstad to Södermalm with my basket loaded up with a disposable grill, some korv (Swedish sausages/hot dogs), a blanket, fizzy water and some books (not the Swedish ones, though). We spread ourselves out in a park and got down to enjoying the summer weather that finally came back to town.

After a few hours at Tantolunden, we cycled back to our part of town but weren't quite ready to go home yet (and we still had two hours before the next round of the World Cup's semifinals) so we decided to finally check out Restaurang Götheburg, a little canal-side restaurant that we always said was so perfectly situated and kitted out and certainly seemed charming, but we hadn't actually had a drink there (just poked our heads in once when on a walk).

We parked our bikes on the cobblestone sidewalk and marched right over to perch ourselves in the sun with some refreshments. It was perfect: good drinks, excellent lazy summer Saturday music, and who doesn't love a place with comfy cushions on their wooden spectator-style benches where boats literally pull up at your feet and their riders disembark to join you for a cocktail?

Restaurang Göteborg in Hammarby Sjöstad  | Our first July 4th abroad on afeathery*nest  |
Restaurang Göteborg in Hammarby Sjöstad  | Our first July 4th abroad on afeathery*nest  |
Not too bad for our first 4th abroad, though if we can swing it next year, I've got my mind set on throwing a proper American-style backyard BBQ. Just need to get a backyard...

One year ago: A Dixie 4th


  1. It is strange here when nobody else acts like it's 4th of July or Thanksgiving. It's kinda like walking around on your birthday. You know it's a big day for you but few others do unless you break the news to them and give them cake... Thanks for this post.

    1. I can only imagine how the Swedes would react if I walked around our building's courtyard in the evening, when the parents/children mill about, proclaiming it's my birthday with offers of slices of cake. I think my right to be here would be revoked ;). We'll have to celebrate in silence.

      P.S. I tried to comment on your "lie of the land" (by the way—ha!) last night but the site kept kicking me out...not sure if anyone else had the issue, so wanted to let you know!

  2. It looks like you had a good 4th of July after all! And good weather too. That's not too common in the beginning of July here.
    It must be sad to be away for Thanksgiving when it's such a big thing in the US. But there should be enough Americans in Stockholm to be a good bunch to celebrate together?

    1. We seriously did, Susanne! So glad summer decided to show its sunny face last week.

      And I think you're definitely right—Thanksgiving here (especially my first) will probably be a little sad and since it's on a Thursday, I couldn't really even host my own dinner as I'd have to convince all my Swedish friends/family to take the day off (although, maybe that wouldn't be so hard!).

      Perhaps a hybrid feast with Americans (who I'm sure will make a point to be free that day) and any Swedes with a few extra vacation days (the latter shouldn't be hard to find!).

      Thanks for swinging by! :)

  3. Love your celebratory flouncy red dress and the red library card. Patriotic indeed! ! FM.


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