Differences between Americans and Swedes

Differences between Americans and Swedes

Today I am feeling good. I slept a little better last night, and day 2 of school went great. I started off with gym in the morning. The gym is not in the school though like here in America, but, rather, about a 20 minute walk from where I live. The mornings are rather depressing, it is pitch black outside which I am used to from America, the quietness is what really gets to me. I am used to morning news in the background, Dakota going crazy and chatting it up with mom and dad. I really miss listening to the Today show. I tried to find it online, but I cannot watch it because it is prohibited when outside the USA. Oh well, I will get used to it I am sure.

The other classes that I had today were Leadership and English. In Leadership we talked about Female vs Male Leadership, it was really quite interesting. It also was nice because the teacher spoke near perfect English so I was able to understand what the heck was going on. After that I went to a quick lunch with my classmates. Today we went to a café that had all sorts of foods. Ordering is still a problem for me; however, today was a small victory because I was able to pick out the words “ost” and “skinka” which mean cheese and ham. I ate quickly and then went home to relax for a while because we had a whole 2 and a half hours between classes. I relaxed on the couch by the window, my new favorite hangout spot, while Bea worked on her blog. It is nice she only works part time so she is home a lot. Right now I am watching Americas Next Top Model in Enlgish! Ah highlight of my day right here! It has Swedish subtitles though which I read and try to pick up on words. I an tell I am getting a little better, it is just a slow process at first.

Alright, now after boring you all with my day I will get to the point of this post – the differences between Americans and Swedes. After being here only a few days I have already noticed a few key ones. For example, here people do not use dryers, they hang dry everything. There are entire rooms dedicated to hanging clothes to dry actually. Also, the washers are very different, they take over 2 hours to complete a wash! Here it is all about Eco-Friendliness. The lights are kept off almost at all times, and when they are on they are very dim. Most of the lights are on timers as well so if anyone forgot to turn them off, they will turn off automatically.

Recycling is also a crazy part of Sweden life. They recycle EVERYTHING! There is even a compost so I have to put all of my banana peels, apple cores, tea bags, etc into a bin that will later be turned into compost. There are also giant recycling bins around town, not just garbage bags.

Let’s see, oh yes the heating! (Mom you would love this one) Unlike in America where our heat comes from vents, in Sweden they heat the houses from the floors. So your feet are always toasty warm.

The cars here are also a lot different, some of the brands I do not even recognize. They are way smaller and compact and drive at super slow speeds as to be safe. The best part is that they ALWAYS stop for pedestrians.

We are suppose to get snow this weekend. While I am not a fan of snow, I do hope it snows this weekend because then we can do fun things like cross country ski (which is free here)! Although here in Varberg they do not use salt at all. The reasons being that it is damaging to the cement, waste of money, makes the snow ugly, and most importantly it hurts the dogs feet when they walk. I told Bea about how we would just put booties on Dakota and she was appalled. Here they care much more about the dogs, probably because they walk them so much.

I promise to do a blog post soon about the Biblioteka which means library and is the Swedish word of the day. They are spectacular here. Although I do wish they had a little bigger English section.

Ta Ta for now,


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