Saturday, September 11, 2010

Välkomna till Sverige

My son just came in from riding his "new" bike, which a slightly older neighbour boy loaned to him. Before that, he was playing in the little park, which is about 50 metres from our front door. And before that, he was helping me pick apples from the big tree in our front yard. And this is just another Saturday in Sweden. :)

We moved here almost a month ago now, to a quiet neighbourhood in the southern suburbs of Stockholm. I'm working for a small Internet company named TestFreaks, which has an office next to T-Centralen, Stockholm's central metro station. It takes me just under ten minutes to walk to the metro station near our house, then 25 minutes on the train, then five minutes from T-Centralen to my office--not a bad commute at all.

We found a townhouse to rent, one of about 40 in a little neighbourhood that was built in the 60s. The house is 100 square metres, up from 75 square metres in Dublin and 50 in Tokyo. Kai has his own bedroom, with a full-sized single bed and wallpaper with aeroplanes! The kitchen / dining room, our room, and a spare bedroom that we are using as an office round out the second floor (AKA the first floor in Sweden, the one at ground level is called the ground floor, often labelled 0 on elevators). Downstairs is a large living room and one more bedroom, which we're planning to turn into a "gym" by putting an elliptical trainer in it.

As I mentioned, our neighbourhood has its own little park, which is situated in the centre of a loop of townhouses. There are lots of kids around, and they leave toys in the park to share since it is private to our neighbourhood. There are at least four kids almost exactly Kai's age, and many more slightly older. He is very excited to play with the "big kids", and his best friend is a six year-old girl named Mina who thinks it is very funny that Kai speaks English and not Swedish. Hopefully, he'll pick up Swedish quickly from playing with the kids. We're also signing him up for kindergarten so that Lyani can concentrate on finding a job. He's very excited about going after he and Lyani went to take a tour of the kindergarten last week.

We're enjoying a nice, long summer, which seems to be drawing to a close, but still gives us tee-shirt weather like today. Later on, we're going over to a friend's house for a cookout.

So far, we're enjoying life in Sweden indeed!