It’s wild waking up in a windowless room, as it could be any time and it would look the same. Our next hostel was also windowless, but as big as a classroom with 6 bunks in it. It’s very basic; the kitchen grosses me out a little because someone was cooking with tuna and it still smelled like it. There’s no stove or heater for a pot; just a microwave, sink and frig. There are 2 toilets for all the rooms, maybe a dozen like ours? We bought “Stockholm cards” at the airport, so we have free transportation to just about anywhere, and lots of free entrances to museums and other tourist attractions. We decided to go take a ride on the boat tour, but the one then was sold out so we got tickets to two down the line. In the meantime, we visited the very center and seed of Stockholm.
|St. George and Dragon|
|...from the other side|
|Les soaks sore ankle in ocean|
We then went to the photo exhibit as our last thing of the day.
He’s from China, and he paints himself into a scene until you can’t see him very well. It started in protest to the government tearing down a place where artists met and lived. He thought that though the place disappeared, the artists’ spirits will remain. Camouflage protects animals from danger. This is his version. It’s pretty amazing; maybe we should get him to do a series in front of the library/Snell/Dietel areas, or Tangeman Apartments on our campus before they are destroyed. (By the way, I’ve seen a lot of old ‘50’s flat-roofed buildings that are in great shape in this snowy cold place.)
When we got back to our metro stop, we didn’t recognize it, and it was barren. We almost went back down in the metro to get our bearings, when we walked up the hill and found it. We talked with our new young Hungarian friends about theatre and their lives ahead of them until late.
We found the proper bus and went on a tour of the grounds and then one of the old 18th C theater (check out www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdRUdoKfPvo ); it shows some of the workings of behind the scenes. Valerie, you would love this place; the architect was also the director. That’s the way to make sure your theater functions as you wish! We had a chance to buy a $100 ticket to see Don Giovani in that theater, but thought it was too steep. The place is made of quite delicate wood, and has not been renovated, so it is still fully functioning as it was way back when.
Thanks to Gustav III’s mother, who came from Prussia to marry the king and thought that Sweden had very little quality culture. She made this castle to help raise the identity of Sweden, by showing that it cared about the Arts and Sciences. Since the king had died by the time she built the palace, much of the imagery was feminine. It was quite striking and fun to imagine little Gustav III playing in the theater and eventually acting himself. It was apparently shocking that he presented plays in the common people’s language (Swedish) rather than the usual French, but he wanted to unify the people with the court more. The castle tour contained a wonderful history lesson for me.
So we went to a park where they have Nordic animals and historic buildings. www.skansen.se/en/ I was charmed by all the animals, though a couple really did need more space (owl, seals, wolves). I loved petting the farm animals and elk moose.