Note: In a marked departure from my normal verbose manner of blogging, I will endeavor to keep y’all informed of our travels by copying excerpts of my personal journal. As I will be typing these up on my cell phone as quickly as possible from a written page, please forgive any errors of grammar or punctuation.
Well, here it is, the first full day in Sweden. I just finished my first breakfast; a terrific spread including pickled herring, spicy bread, cold cuts, yogurt, and “sour milk”, along with various granolas and cereals. The herring was a real treat; chewy-er than being smoked or cooked, and pickled in what I believe to be dill, bay leaves, black peppercorns, oil, and a mild acid.
Last night was quite rad; despite being hosed after 24+ hours of travel, Sammie, John, Mike, and I tramped through a small forest near our hotel (Best Western) to reach a downtown area in search of food. Of the several restaurants available to us (including one simply called “Burger!”), we chose a green lit, nightclub-like establishment called “Vinyl”. Inside, despite a cave-like discotec vibe (complete with inspirational posters lining the walls, such as “Live. Laugh. Party!” and “Y.O.L.O. But if you party hard, once is enough.”), we had some killer food. Sammie got a Caesar salad, John and I had a curried chicken pasta, and Mike, of course, went with the burger. We paired the meal with tall “Falcon” beers, and by the bottom of my glass it was clear to me that my first night in Sweden would not be a late one. Back at the hotel I choked down one “Eriksberg” beer in the spirit of new adventure and then called it a night. This morning the sky is a mottled blue gray, casting everything around us in a sad, soft light. First gig tonight!
It’s cold here in Stockholm, warmer back South
My mile marker mind finds milk in my mouth
You swore we’d never make it, look at me now
Sipping on fine ambrosia, spoiled juice of the cow
The liquor too bitter, though sometimes I wish
To pickle my liver like slivers of fish
You may be in Knoxville, dressed in finer silk
But you’ll taste sweeter Swedish Sour Milk.
– a poem by Bowman Townsend