I’m happy to have the opportunity to call myself a (temporary) Canadian expat. For me, the travel bug has always been more like a chronic syndrome, so I’m thrilled to have the chance to see Scandinavia and learn about its people, places and cultures.

The move to Sweden that inspired this blog came about when my husband, Scott, was offered a five-month design internship with IKEA. We packed up our lives, found someone to watch our cats (thank you Tiana!), and jetted off on this strange and wonderful adventure. Our new home is Älmhult (otherwise known as IKEAtown), a Småland village of 8,000 people, most of whom are employees of IKEA and their families. I’ve never lived in a small town before, so the rural-ish lifestyle is almost as much of a change for me as the new country and language.

I don’t speak any Swedish, which puts me way outside my comfort zone. I usually power-study the language of a place before traveling there, since mime is not my forte. The suddenness of this move caught me unprepared, language-wise , and so I’m looking forward to learning Swedish so I can figure out what this is all about.

Likewise, I know next to nothing about Swedish cuisine, other than what I could glean from the web and visits to the IKEA cafeteria restaurant. My experience living in France taught me first hand that regional dishes, ingredients and food customs can provide deep insight into people and their culture. I’m certain that there’s more to the Swedish table than meatballs, so culinary exploration is a big part of this blog.

Over the next five months, you can also expect observations and stories on an assortment of subjects. Music, design, history, and any other remarkable things I come across during my time here.

If you want to ask me a question, or if you’re a seasoned Scandinavian traveler with info or insight to share, leave a comment or write me at sarah-at-swedely-dot-com.

Ta hand om dig själv.

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