It’s been a while since I’ve kept you all updated. Everything has been pretty hectic here (for the reasons I shall explain below) so this edition is going to be a bumper blog!
In the last couple of weeks, I’ve travelled to Copenhagen and Helsingborg, been to numerous Swedish parties, embarked on a treasure hunt, had an exam and finished my first assignment.
Good news – I passed my Swedish introductory course and am now taking a further course to hopefully fit in with the Swedes. The academic year is divided into quarters rather than just terms like we have in the UK, so it is normal to take only 2 courses at a time for a duration of around 2 months. I think I actually prefer this system as you can focus on these courses. Due to the availability of the courses I want to take, I’m taking 3 courses this period and thus am very busy and I’ve already handed an assignment in (before most of you have even started freshers week). In November and December, I’ll only have 1 course so I should have lots of free time.
The university organises lots of trips that I’m hoping to get involved in. There are numerous trips to Russia and Lapland (YES, LAPLAND) as well as trips within Sweden to Stockholm and Gothenburg.
I have embraced the Swedish cuisine while I’ve been here – I have made meatballs myself and have been to a ‘Taste of Sweden’ event where I tried meatballs with jam. It is delicious! Also on offer was pickled herring, chocolate and coconut balls, and a variety of Swedish yogurts.
Many of you have been asking about the nightlife here in Sweden. It’s safe to say that it’s a lot different to nightlife back in the UK. Nights out start pretty early with clubs opening at 10, and due to the expensive drinks and entrance fee (even with a studentlund discount), we end up starting pre-drinks very early, and often they turn in corridor parties lasting the whole evening.
However, if you do make it in to one of the student nation clubs (nations are basically big student societies that have their own buildings and clubs), it is hectic and the dancing is a lot more adventurous and outrageous than you would find in Exeter. This weekend I even found myself at a church party which was a little strange…
I have also had the chance to explore some of the region. The weekend before last I went to Helsingborg which is about 45 minutes north of Lund. It is a nice little city and a great place for taking photos. You can see Denmark in the distance and we took the opportunity to take the ferry over to Denmark and visit Helsingør. The main attraction is the Kronborg castle, made famous as the setting of Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
Before I finish, I must mention the Lund carnival. It happens every 4 years (like the Olympics I guess) and luckily this is the year it comes to Lund, and as I am here all year, I will be here to see it when it comes in the Spring. Apparently, the whole city goes crazy!
So that’s what I’ve been up to. The next few weeks are likely to be equally busy as I have two assignments due and a few of us are planning a trip to Malmö this weekend.
Until next time…