I am super excited to see them and for them to see and experience Sweden, not only because it’s where I live now but because its a beautiful country rich with history, tradition, and culture! Walking them through a few things and answering some questions made me think of being a tourist in Sweden. I decided to compile a little list to point out some culture differences between New York and Sweden, based on my personal experiences, stories I have heard, things I’ve seen when my family visited, and the questions my friends have asked in anticipation of arriving. **Some exaggeration and/or Halmstad specific examples might occur.**
How to spot a Tourist in Sweden
- The confused person standing at the crosswalk not sure when to go. A look of panic and frustration as they dash in front of your car even though you are already stopped in the middle of the intersection waiting for them to cross.
- The ones taking photos of ANY signs, trash cans, buses, cobblestone, etc.
- Enters your home without acknowledging that everyone else has taken their shoes off.
- Speaks slowly, expecting you to hardly understand English.
- Says “Hey” to everyone and wonders why it is not obvious that they don’t speak Swedish.
- Walks blissfully unaware while you are trying to cycle past them; they don’t seem to have the sixth sense of being able to hear your tires as you approach, nor the slight ring of your bell.
- Is more worried about getting hit by a car than a bike.
- Confuses your average Swedish hedgehog for a large rat.
- The one who is still bundled up while the Swedes are grilling and sunbathing.
- Is shocked to see any other ethnicity in Sweden – anything out of the blonde hair and blue hair stereotype is surprising.
- Wants waffles or pancakes (Snack food) for breakfast instead of open sandwiches, and “regular” sandwiches for lunch instead of full “dinner” meals.
- Laughs louder than everyone else in the room, usually at things you do not find so funny.
- Talks louder than everyone else, all the time.
- Insists on striking up small talk with every stranger.
- Expects stores to be open no matter what, at any time.
- Talk about Ikea, Abba, and the Swedish Chef non-stop.
- On the hunt for Swedish Fish.
- They are surprised to find H&M in Sweden.
- Tries to book a hotel room where smoking is allowed.
- Leaves the largest tip for dinner at a restaurant. Or any tip for a lunch meal.
- Doesn’t order a sweet pastry with their coffee, or even worse – doesn’t drink coffee.
- Orders water, then spits it out when the bill comes.
- The only one at the restaurant not eating plank steak.
- The only one at the restaurant not eating their burger with a fork and knife.
- The only one whose dish is not smothered in ketchup, cream, or sauce.
- Asks for a doggy bag to take home their left over food.
Any to add? Hope these were fun to read or relate to!
Being Easter weekend I would greatly appreciate some things for them to do in Goteborg that might be open/available this time of year! Any suggestions? Also #1 things in Stockholm if only visiting for one day!