One of the things I miss the most since I moved to Sweden is driving a car. The country is offering endless possibilities for day trips, road trips, family outings…and without a car I sometimes feel trapped. Well, not having car also has its upsides..I rediscovered the joy of walking and in the process even lost some excess kilos:)
When Gabi started planing her visit we decided to rent a car and explore Dalarna/Sweden together. When the day came to pick up the car I could hardly hide my excitement. I drove out of that place the minute I signed the papers and disappeared into the open road. I love the roads in Sweden. No police, reasonable speed limits, beautiful scenery… I cannot wait for our summer road trip that is supposed to take us through the Baltic states, Finland, Sweden, Norway and only God knows where else.
As I was driving towards Nyköping airport to pick up Gabi a sense of happiness kicked in, the one that only a road trip can give you. It is a totally different mind set. The one in which you are totally open minded, alert, able to notice the little things and let the road lead you and not the other way around. Endless roads, endless lakes, endless possibilities. I took detours, tried to find the smallest roads possible and try to explore as much as possible in that short time frame. I was happy like a little kid.
The road took me to a little village called Huggnora where I admired idyllic houses and unique piers. The name of the village caught my attention because at my Swedish language class I met Noura, an energetic and a bit crazy (good crazy) Libyan and I simply had to stop and have a look.
The beautiful roads led me along countless lakes and forests to the World Heritage site of Engelsberg (Ängelsberg). In 17th and 18th century this tiny village was one of the most important early-industrial ironworks in Europe. Its state of the art technology (for those times) blast furnace and forge are still in working order. Nearby I caught a glimpse of Oljeön, oldest preserved oil refinery in the world.
Near Eskilstuna I stumbled upon Sigurdsristningen – 3m long Viking age rock carvings that illustrate the story of Sigurd the Dragon slayer that inspired Wagner’s Ring Cycle and apparently The Hobbit and Lord of the rings also borrowed from it.
The day ended with a beautiful sunset fika at the shore of the Baltic sea with one of my favourite people in the world, eating my favourite food that mom sent for me:)