Two silly things I did when I first got here

Just for fun, I thought I would post some of the silly things I did because I was new to Sweden (of course, I am still new, but a little wiser now).

The alphabet

I started taking Swedish lessons at SFI in earnest in October 2009, but prior to moving here, from April to October last year, I bought a variety of DVDs and took out some vocabulary CDs from the library, all of which I put on my Ipod. I was informally learning the language as I didn’t want it to become a chore. Being Canadian, I had to take French starting in the 2nd grade, but it was just another course, and a language I didn’t use outside the classroom. It is too bad. I think if it had been taught in a way that the culture, the food, the music was embroiled in the learning of grammar, I might have enjoyed it more.

Anyway, my approach to learning Swedish was that it would be natural, fun, and involve (guess what!) food, culture, music, and just living here. But I am a scholar at heart as well, so when I bought a little dictionary I started using it in earnest whenever I could.

One day I was trying to find a word that was written in the newspaper. Let me use äpple as a simple example (although that word is quite apparent as to what it is in English). I looked high and low in and around the letter ‘A’ at the beginning of the Swedish section of the dictionary to no avail. Then I started looking for other words that started with the new vowels, å,ä, and ö¶. Nothing! My first thought was….I have been given a faulty dictionary and these sections are missing!

Ha ha ha, you laugh, but these 3 vowels are found at the back of the dictionary, and they are quite short compared to the other letters. Even though I had figured out how to navigate (sort of) the order of words within the letters A to Z, I had just not clued into the fact that these three vowels come last. Yes, Amanda, the makers of the Swedish -English dictionary forgot to include 3 whole sections. NOT!

The roast

Just after Christmas, I went food shopping at the big COOP in Bromma. Lots of left over Christmas items were on sale and I eagerly looked for a good bargain. I saw this little round piece of meat, it was rolled up like a roast with herbs and tied up in string. It was cheap, and I figured it was pork roast. Perfect, C’s mother was coming for dinner at the cottage the next day and we could have this.

On Sunday, I took it out of the fridge and asked C what temperature he thought we should cook it at. He looked at it and laughed because apparently this is a special Christmas meat, with strange spices, and you don’t roast it, you boil it (YUCK). I can’t remember the name of it (I’ll try and find it somewhere).

I voted for just throwing it away (I do hate doing that, but boiled meat grosses me out). But C decided to boil it. I think it was boiled for about 6 hours with the meat thermometer stuck in it. It never reached the correct temperature. We did not eat it, and I think I made pasta for dinner instead. He and his mother (and the rest of his family) all still laugh at me.

That is all I have time for right now. More to come as I remember them!

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One thought on “Two silly things I did when I first got here

  1. Hey thanks! I stopped writing here for a while but thanks to a few people who have recently left me nice notes, I will come back and write more!

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