On the Way to Sweden

Leaving for Sweden today! The shopping is pretty much done, if I haven’t taken something, I’m sure I’ll buy it right there.

The flight to Stockholm by Belavia Airlines was very fast and comfortable; it lasted about 1.5 hours from Minsk, Belarus. I was lucky to have a seat near the window and could observe all the beauty of the country. It was dark green because of the thick pine forests and consisted of many islands. When the plane started landing, I was astonished by the view. The little red houses were drowning in bushes and trees and the buildings were so organized. This has given me an idea that people here live very close to nature. Everything at the airport was made out of wood, the stairs, the floors, etc., which has also drawn my attention. No wonder, everything is surrounded by trees here.

Then I took the SJ train and 2 hours later I was already in Borlange. The Swedish people on the way were very nice. I felt a little intimidated to talk to them first, because they didn’t seem very open for conversation. But when you have to ask for help or directions, you don’t have any other option. And the people turned out to be very helpful and kind.

In Borlange I took a taxi to my dorm. The taxis are outside, they have a device that counts the kilometers; everything is official, with a receipt, so you don’t have to bargain here 🙂  I paid 125 SEK, around $20, for a 10-min trip, so be ready to spend money here. By the way, I changed money at the airport and they take a 45 SEK ($7) commission, so it’s better to exchange a larger amount at once.

The adventures began upon my arrival at the dorm. It turned out the office was closed and I couldn’t get the key to my room! I couldn’t even enter the building. It’s surprising that there is no person responsible for the building for 24 hours, like everywhere else. I’d heard before that Tunabyggen offered quite poor service and I experienced it personally. However, even in this situation the hospitality of two Swedish students has compensated for these unfortunate circumstances. Two guys let me into the building and walked with me all over the place to find somewhere to sleep. We found a room with a big sofa and a bathroom nearby. That was what I needed at that point. And this is where I’m writing this post from 🙂

So, here is my first day in Sweden. Tomorrow I will hopefully get my room, and will write more about how things are going.

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