sábado, diciembre 30, 2006

Arjeplog Trip - Day 1

During the last 4 days, we (Michele, Therese, Sasha and me) were in Arjeplog, a little village of Sweden. We had a lot of fun, as you can see in this small journal. That is the first day:

26 December

10.31
Local Bus from Andreaskyrkan (Bjorskatan) to Prästgatan (Luleå bus station). 7 minutes.
11.05 Regional bus. Line 31 to Älvsbyn busstation
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12.05 Stop in Älvsbyn. In the same bus, the number of the line changed from Line 21 to Line 31.
13.10 Stop in Arvidsjaur. We went for a walk around the village
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14.00 Departure from Arvidsjaur to Arjeplog in Line 200.
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15.00 Arrive in Arjeplog
15.10 Arrive in our new home, the Hostel Fjällgården. Wonderful place!!!
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16.00 Lunch
19.00 Went to a walk around Arjeplog and saw the stars
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20.30 Chat, dinner and Italian lesson by Michele.
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martes, diciembre 26, 2006

Merry Xmas to everybody - God Jul och Godt Nytt år!


All the planns for that days were changing. No time in my room, a lot of wonderful Fikas, great Xmas dinner, crazy sauna and a travel ....

On Friday: Fika, crazy dinner (Macarroni with popcorn) and Cleo
On Saturday: Fika+Chat until 05.00
On Sunday: Shooping (why Swedish shops close at 13.00??), Xmas dinner (with presents) and Sauna
On Monday: Fika again

What is a FIKA ??? The answer is ...

And my present goes to .... Romain !!!

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More news in 4 days ;-)

PD. When I was shooping, I heard some people talking in Spanish. I said them "Feliz Navidad" (Merry Xmas in Spanish). They smiled. I think that we were more happier after that.

miércoles, diciembre 20, 2006

Dance Of The Sugar Plum Fairy

While I was watching the new trailer of the movie "The Simpsons", one song was in the music background. I remember the song from the midis of Windows 98, but I couldn't remember the title. Finally, I found it: Dance Of The Sugar Plum Fairy of the fairy-ballet the Nutcracker from Tchaikovsky. Do you know this song ? Childhood...



Note: Yes, I'm trapped!

lunes, diciembre 18, 2006

Xmas is coming ....

And I am going to spend my first Xmas out home, and I will be in Sweden. Any advice for that days ??

I will talk in the next posts about Christmas Tomte, Gävle goat ...
Do you know any Swedish traditions???

jueves, diciembre 14, 2006

St. Lucia.


What is St. Lucia ?
It is a traditional celebration in Sweden. Saint Lucia is honoured annually on 13th December (One of the shortest days of winter). The total darkness of the Lucia early morning is broken by the glow of the Lucia figure dressed in a flowing gown of white and afire with a wreath of candles upon her head (Lucia means "light", with the same Latin root, lux,). Sankta Lucia, as she is known in Swedish, is a creature of goodness and light. She is a shining angel illuminating the way to the Christmas season.

Who is St. Lucia ?
Saint Lucia was an Italian christian who lived in Sicily in the 4th century. As final torture, her eyes were gouged out. She was miraculously still able to see without her eyes. To this day we see pictures of St. Lucy holding her eyes on a golden plate. She is the patron saint of blindness.

How Sweden celebrate St. Lucia?
Girls in Sweden dress up as Santa Lucia wearing a white dress and a crown of candles . Boys carry a candle and wear a kind of white pyjama. They wear hats that are pointy with golden stars on them.

There are also special foods for Lucia's Day like Lussekatter and Pepparkakor (spicy gingerbread biscuits).

Lussekatter

Pepparkakor


Why Sweden celebrate St. Lucia?
On the 13th of December there was a special day for "Lusse" celebrated since ages. Lusse was the name of the devil and on the longest night of the year - everyone was afraid of him. This day was also the last day before the Christmas fast. People then ate a lot and of course there was a lot of drinking. It was "Lusse-night".

Something new happened in the 1920-ies. A Swedish singer was on a holiday in Neaples. He saw all street- names, restaurants and hotels named after Lucia. He also heard a special fisherman' song and he now, thanks to the song, got an idea to make the Lucia- celebration more respectable. The song got a new text in Swedish- connected to Lucia. In 1928 a newspaper announced a competition "Who will be Santa Lucia of Sweden?" This was the starting point for a new annual celebration.

What are the lyrics of this song?

Natten går tunga fjät,
runt gård och stuga.
Kring jord som sol'n förlät,
skuggorna ruva.
Då i vårt mörka hus,
stiga med tända ljus,
Sankta Lucia, Sankta Lucia.

Natten var stor och stum.
Nu hör det svingar,
i alla tysta rum,
sus som av vingar.
Se på vår tröskel står vitkläd,
med ljus i hår,
Sankta Lucia, Sankta Lucia.

Mörkret skall flykta snart
ur jordens dalar.
Så hon ett underbart
ord till oss talar.
Dagen skall åter ny,
stiga ur rosig sky,
Sankta Lucia, Sankta Lucia.

Download the song from: http://www.mennonitemission.net/Resources/EducationVBS/2005Sweden/audio/lucia.mp3

Further information:
http://www.internet-at-work.com/hos_mcgrane/holidays/nora.html
http://myeurope.eun.org/ww/en/pub/myeurope/home/misc/slucia.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St._Lucia_Day
http://www.thelocal.se/2668/20061212/


sábado, diciembre 09, 2006

Bye bye Kåren

Tonight, at 3 o clock in the morning, Kåren will close until February 2007, when it will open in the new place, the C-Building of the Luleå Tekniska Universitet. 4 bars, 3 dancefloors with a total of 24 hours of dance!!!! And the theme of the night is Beats of Kåren.

Kåren is the meeting point for students of the LTU not only in the Luleå Saturday Night. There you can take a tea or a coffee for free, and also take little cakes, sandwiches, meals ... And at night, there is a disco.

Why is so special? Because there is a place for students manages by students. The staff in Kåren are students without salary, only the tips.

This night, the name of the party is Botten upp.
New:
"Botten upp" means literally bottom up, i.e. drink so the bottom of the glass is up. Thank you, Peter

miércoles, diciembre 06, 2006

Older means more holidays!


In Sweden, the Annual Leave Act currently gives all full-time employees 25 days off work. But collective agreements in the public sector currently stipulate that employees should have:
  • 28 days until the age of 29
  • 31 days until the age of 40
  • 35 days from the age of 40 onwards

Further information:
http://www.thelocal.se/5715/20061206/
http://www.scandinavica.com/culture/society/working.htm

lunes, diciembre 04, 2006

Snus, the Swedish tobacco

Snus


What is Snus?
Swedish snus is a ground tobacco product dating from the late 1700s. Even at that time, Swedish snus, which is used orally, was distinctive from the nasal snuff products used in many other countries.

How consume it ? The most usual way to consume snus is to place it beneath the upper lip, and keep it there for a time varying from a few minutes to several hours



What are the ingredients in Swedish snus? Swedish snus consists of ground tobacco, water, salt and additives. In Sweden, snus is regulated under the Food Act. All additives are approved for use in food. Swedish snus contains the following additives:
  • Salt, which adds taste and acts as a preservative
  • Sodium carbonate, which is converted into bicarbonate
  • Food approved humectants, which preserve moisture
  • Flavor additives, which give each brand its unique character

What are the main types of snus on the market ?
  • Original snus or lössnus is a loose, moist powder which can be portioned and rolled into a spherical shape with the fingertips, or using a prismaster tool.


  • Portionssnus, is prepackaged powder in small bags made from the same material as teabags. It comes in smaller quantities than the loose powder but is considered easier to handle (and expectorate) than the loose powder.

More information:

sábado, diciembre 02, 2006

Fly on the wings of love ....

"Fly on the wings of love
Fly baby fly
Reaching the stars above
Touching the sky"

Some weeks ago, When the Spanish, French and Hungarian team were returning home by Karaoke-Taxi, our fiend Magnus put the song "Fly on the wings of love". The last time that I had listened this song was maybe 4 years ago!!!
Surfing the internet, I know now that this song was the winner of the Eurovision Song Contest 2000, performed for Denmark by the Olsen Brothers. There is the video:





Do you remember the dance version ??? Yes!!!!
Who was the group??? XTM feat. Annia
Do you have the videoclip ???? Of course. Here.