Tag Archives: Swedish culture

#seetheworld Twitter Chat on Sweden is coming up!

#seetheworld

Join the Twitter chat on Sweden Aug 14! The community of #seetheworld will share and learn about Sweden! Whether you have already been to Sweden or not, live here or don’t, know something about it or nothing at all – come join us! This is a nice opportunity to chat about Sweden with fellow curious twitter friends. And, to connect with new friends! We all want to #seetheworld!

To join the conversation log in to Twitter and follow the hashtag #SeeTheWorld.

You can also follow

me, the co-host, @globatris

the founders @theCultureur and @RovingAltruist

and of course @SeeTheWorldChat

https://twitter.com/thecultureur/status/365212764148473856

Learn the Swedish language by listening to music

Learn the Swedish language by listening to music

Learning a language it is beneficial to listen to and sing along to music in that language. You learn new words but more importantly you get a sense of the rhythm and intonation of the language, as well as learning pronunciation.

Below is a link to a popular summer song in Swedish, by Tomas Ledin. It is called “Sommaren är kort” – summer is short.

video with sing-along text.

To learn the Swedish language by listening to music you need to pick up the words in the song. I have made a Sommaren är kort – glosor translating Swedish into English.

Sing along!

Red and ripe and Swedish lesson

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Swedish strawberries.
Svenska jordgubbar.
So sweet and longed for. We Swedes always claim Swedish strawberries are the best; special. Grown in the open, taking their time to ripen they are a must on Midsummer. As almost every day during summer. Is there a better snack really? I love having them for breakfast too. On top of the muesli and sometimes on a piece of freshly baked bread with cream cheese.

Sometimes I pick my own strawberries; living in Switzerland a Swedish friend and I hired a babysitter to take the babies on a walk along the fields so we could introduce the toddlers to strawberry picking! Not price smart, however that was not the point.

Swedish lesson:

en jordgubbe – a/one strawberry
två jordgubbar – two strawberries
den jordgubben – that strawberry
mogna jordgubbar – ripe strawberries
Jordgubbarna är söta. The strawberries are sweet.
jordgubbssylt – strawberry jam
jordgubbssaft – strawberry juice/squash/cordial
en jordgubbstårta – a strawberry cake
att rensa jordgubbar – to rinse strawberries
att snoppa jordgubbar – to hull strawberries

Are merry-go-rounds culturally different?

The other day I learnt that merry-go-rounds in Sweden, as well as in the rest of Europe, generally turn clockwise whereas they in North America run counter-clockwise! A search on Google confirms this. Reality? Even though I’ve been an expatriate in both locations I must admit I don’t know; I never thought about it. What are your experiences? Comments please – let’s solve this expat problem!

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En karusell (a carousel)

Expatriate life in lyrics

Today I’ll provide a link to one of my favorite musical songs. It describes the life of an expat mother, but an expatriate life of past times and of much hardship. Expatriating today can be tough too, but hopefully not on all the levels Kristina experiences.

Listen to Kristina

From the musical “Kristina from Duvemåla” by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulveus (the Bs in ABBA).

Why I love my coffee cold.

This time of the year us Swedes grab our mugs,

sit outside on a bench,

wrapped in blankets,

faces turned to the sun like sunflowers,

enjoying the first warm rays of light.

We are all probably side by side in a row,

pressed against a house wall sheltering us from the wind.

The coffee is long cold.

It doesn’t matter,

as long as we can take our fika outside we are happy!

Soon the grill will be out too.

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Fika the Swedish way

Fika is the Swedish soul.

Fika is coffee/tea/juice/whatever-except-alcohol.

Fika is our daily excuse to savor cinnamon rolls/pastry/cake/cookies.

Fika is a daily routine at our work places. Twice a day actually.

Fika is when Swedes are not taciturn.

Fika is #fika on twitter.

Fika is at home. At the office, at a café.

Fika is at the playground, in a park and in our gardens.

Fika is for business and pleasure.

Fika can be just a cuppa.

Fika is always right.

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Forget about the past – or?

Is the future more important to Swedes than the past? We make plans and dream about what we will do in the future. Travel, new house … The past however is … in the past. What do we know about precedent generations for example? How much can the general Swede tell about the great grandparents – their maiden names, where they were born, which schools they attended; what a day in their young lives looked like? In other cultures this might be unthinkable. It´s not that we don´t care about family; we do; but we might not necessarily spend a lot of time together. It could be the distance, but also I think full time working mothers and fathers leave less time to share with extended family. Another possible reason is that many families have lived in Sweden for numerous generations – it´s not a big deal; no need to search for the roots.

I can only hope that we are all also taking time to enjoy the present. Are you?

Swedish small talk – or big. #14

Want to adopt Swedish culture? Talk about the weather.
Want to adopt Swedish culture? Talk about the weather.

What about it?  – read on here!