1. The ability to take a long shower without running out of hot water.
2. Getting to be back on my BICYCLE!
3. 18 Smakar (ice cream parlor) around the corner. Just knowing it is there comforts me.
4. Grocery stores in walking distance and only five minutes away at that.
5. Did I already mention getting to ride my bicycle?
6. It is still, or rather, finally summer here in Stockholm. Good for swimming, bad for sleeping, but overall it's awesome so I'll take the hot nights and stop complaining.
I got a haircut today, which is one of my favorite ways of being pampered. I love going to get my hair cut. It is so relaxing to have someone else wash my hair, and one of the added benefits of my salon is that I get a wonderful head massage at the end of the wash. I may have started blowing spit bubbles, I'm not completely sure, but my eyes were closed and I may have even jerked slightly at one point. Did I fall asleep? It wouldn't surprise me after having to get up so early today. It is always difficult getting up early on Monday, after sleeping in all weekend, and it was especially difficult today after a lovely week of sleeping in until I woke up, with no alarm going off or cat pouncing to wake me up.
The weather was also really nice today so I was able to ride my bike to work and to my haircut appointment. The salon is located in one of the more hip and trendy neighborhoods around S:t Eriksplan (Saint Erik's Square). I left the office fifteen minutes before my scheduled appointment. I hate to be late but I didn't want to be too early either. However, It only took me five minutes to get to the vicinity of the salon so I decided to browse the neighborhood just a bit as I made my way there. I spotted out of the corner of my eye a tiny bakery called Bröd och Salt (Bread and Salt). I was so excited because I have bought their bread before at their location in the new MOOD Stockholm shopping center, located in the city center, and it was amazing. So I parked my bike to go in and pick up a loaf of their specialty, appropriately named, bröd och salt. It is a dark bread made with dark syrup, giving it a rich, slightly, sweet flavor, and then it is sprinkled with flakes of sea salt over the top. Quite heavenly, I assure you.
The icing on the cake however was another thing that caught my eye while I was in the bakery. Are you ready for it? You might want to be sitting down. I spotted a jar of rhubarb jam. I had seen this particular jam before in the grocery store and apparently I misread the price (thankfully) and thought it was 350 Swedish kronor, which is around eighty U.S. dollars. I thought it was completely ridiculous so when I asked about the price today and the sweet girl said fifty kronor I said, "I'll take one." Yes, I know, fifty kronor is still around ten dollars but it is rhubarb and having tasted it before I can say that it is definitely worth the price. Plus, I think ten dollars is a fair price for a jar of happiness, don't you?
Just for fun, here are a few of my favorite vacation photos, not in any particular order:
Beautiful pink and white stock roses along the side of the summer house...
This guy, and about a hundred others, was crossing the street one evening after a heavy rain... some of them unfortunately had gotten splatted.
My husband's dad fried us up some mackerel, caught by a local fisherman) one evening. Served with lingon jam and boiled potatoes. Delicious!
Some pretty wild flowers growing in the yard...
On display at an art gallery. I actually found a really old one once but my husband wouldn't let me take it home. The paint was all chipping off but I still thought it was cool. Next time...
I should have put something next to it so you could see the size. It was probably three inches across.
Someone getting bold...
On their way home. Funny, we were too but their car looked cuter.