Because my time in Sweden was so limited – barely a day – I have just a few observations to make:
• You’re probably all wondering if I agree with Sweden’s reputation for having the world’s most beautiful women. Well, based on my very brief visit, my impression is “no, not exactly.” While there certainly are some incredible head-turners, as far as I can tell there’s really no major difference between here and the rest of Scandinavia. Scandinavia as a whole, then? It’s good…but definitely not as extreme as Eastern Europe. So why the reputation? Peder’s hypothesis is that it started in the 60’s, when Swedish models began making their Hollywood debut. Suddenly they were thrust into the limelight, and a connection between Sweden and beauty was formed. Meanwhile, poorer parts of the world remained completely unknown despite what they may’ve had to offer. Keep in mind of course that I never made it to Stockholm, nor did I experience any Swedish nightlife – so you may take these observations with a grain of salt.
• Another thing Swedes are known for, oddly enough, is obeying crosswalks. Even Peder’s parents mentioned it. But I can tell you from experience: this just isn’t true. I have no idea where the rumor came from 😛
• Although prices in Sweden are similar to Norway and Denmark, due to its comparatively weak kroner, things on a whole were quite a bit more affordable. After weeks of traveling in Scandinavia this provided a much-needed break: suddenly I felt free to shop according to taste rather than budget, as foods I’d been avoiding due to outrageous prices were once again reasonable. Apparently this hasn’t always been true – before its economy crashed, Sweden was actually more expensive than Norway – but at least on this visit it was a nice little financial break 🙂