July 14, 2009

Coming Home

I love travelling. Love it! I love how it shakes things up, changes one's perspective, teaches, enlightens, stretches, entertains, challenges and sometimes brings one to a realization.
I remember so clearly the first time I visited New York City. I was 19 and came for spring break with a friend who lived in the suburbs. I was so energized and excited by the crowds, the noise, the grit, the pace and the diversity. It seemed so incredibly alive and was exactly what I wanted at that time. I decided right then that I would live here one day. Flash forward almost 20 years, and many of the things that I once found so compelling about New York now wear on me. I love living in Brooklyn and the neighborhoodiness of it, but when I leave my area and have to contend with loud people, slow trains, foul smells, crowds and hyperneurosis, I can get cranky.

Enter Stockholm:

Almost from the moment we landed, I felt as though I were coming home. Granted, this may be a result of the fact that I grew up and went to college in areas with large populations of Scandinavian-Americans, and so coming to Stockholm literally was like coming home. Or because Stockholm is a city of water and bridges, and I grew up in a river city.

Whatever the reason, it felt really right, much as New York felt completely right once upon a time.

There was lots and lots to see and do, and one of the first things that we saw near our little hotel, Tre Små Rum, in the trendy neighborhood of Mariatorget on the island of Sodermalm was this:

Knitting street art! I wondered if Knitta Please had been here or if this was an indie project. It says "varsågod", which translates as "here you are" or "there you are," and is used when offering something to someone.
That first find proved to be a bit of an omen, as we found several yarn stores around the city. I bought some linen, just as I'd intended, but I also picked up several skeins of local hand dyed yarns, some wool, some silk.

Stockholm is incredibly cosmopolitan with terrific shopping, and a ton of nifty second hand stores.
How can one not love crinolines? These were at Beyond Retro, where I could have spent hours had I not felt so destroyed from our flight (no sleep for me). And trite though it may be, clogs were most definitely on the agenda.
Cute, right? We each picked up a pair here (well, mine were picked up for me as a belated birthday present).
We took the train north to Uppsala one day, to see some sights, to be sure, but our main focus was Yll o Tyll, which I'd read of on Ravelry.
Many, many lovely yarns were fingered and I spent more money than I'd expected, but I don't regret a single purchase. I've already started working up a birthday present with some silk that I brought back. Fun!
Uppsala is a really cute university town, and we had fun wandering around, even though it rained much of the day.

Lest you think the entirety of the day was spent in Yll o Tyll, I should tell you that we also wandered the grounds of Uppsala Slott, visited the Museum Gustavianum, and ate lunch at a weird little Chinese buffet joint. All in all, it was a lovely outing.
Next installment: the wedding!


littlebirdbigcity said... Best Blogger Tips

I love your pictures. I'm jealous. It's so wonderful to see that knit graffiti in unexpected places.

Oiyi said... Best Blogger Tips

Welcome home! The yarn stores look amazing. I can't wait to see what you got.