Friday, January 29, 2010

Everyday Life: When in Sweden ...

Have you met Jenn from a Blonde in Sweden? She, too, agreed to guest post over here during my crazy busy week at the business. I very well could have not posted this week, but I thought it would be much more fun to ask a few friends to come on over because, well, I love introducing my friends to each other even via blogging. It's my thing and part of the reason why I love owning a Curves. So won't you show Jenn some love and please assure her she's not a nerd but actually quite hilarious?
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What a week. First I get my very first blog award and then I'm asked to write a guest post for Hyacynth. I thought guest bloggers were like guest hosts, like famous people. You know, when Joy Behar fills in for Larry King or Ryan Seacrest takes over Dick Clark's New Year's Eve. So shouldn't a guest poster be like a MckMama or something? Apparently not. Apparently all one needs is a blog to qualify. And not even a pretty blog or a popular one (I have 12 followers). I'm like the nerd that gets picked first for the softball team in gym class (like some Hallmark movie). I'm looking around thinking "that popular kid could not possibly be pointing at me?"!

But here I am, wondering what on earth I could have to say that's so darn important. What are my options? I could stay relevant and talk about Haiti. I could be safe and blubber on about how motherhood has filled my life with gladness. Or why not dial it up a notch and take on abortion or healthcare reform in the US or why on earth they put poor Dick Clark on television to ring in the New Year.

Since Hyacynth has, with her request (which she is likely very much regretting at this point) put me on par with REAL bloggers, why not use this opportunity to introduce you to a country I'm an expert at being a foreigner in...Sweden. Hence, the SwedishJenn handle. I'm sure at this time of year, Sweden is NOT on your list of Top 100 places to visit but hey, I know stuff about it so here goes:
Top 10 Things About Sweden (for the foreigner)
1. The weather sucks. Seriously. It sucks. The winters are cold. Summer? Let's just call it a long ass Spring. Oh and try sleeping in June when it's sunny all day long. Or try summoning the will to live in the dead of winter, when it gets dark at 2pm every day. Then there's November, where I saw the sunshine for a total of 1.5 days.
2. They have more public holidays than almost any country in the world. It's great. Also, want a minimum of 6 weeks paid vacation/year regardless of whether you work at McDonald's or for the Federal government? Move to Sweden.
3. Both you and your hubby are entitled to a minimum of 1 year parental leave. That's paid. Sick leave? You have separate sick days for yourself and separate ones for your kids.
4. Sweden follows Denmark as the highest tax country in the world.
5. They have a royal family and they're all pretty darned beautiful.
6. Yes, this country is, indeed, home to some of the world's most beautiful people. Seriously. Moreso the women, though. It's brutal. Blonde, legging-clad, scarf-wrapped, Ugg-wearing bombshells everywhere.
7. There is no such thing as a Swedish massage. Sorry boys. The Swedes actually laugh when you mention it.
8. Södertälje, a city in Sweden, has taken in more Iraqi refugees than the United States and Canada combined.
9. The only thing colder than the weather in Sweden is the people. Swedes are notorious for being closed off and reserved (though I have been told that once you're "in", you're in). As a foreigner, making a friend in Sweden can be as challenging as attempting to get Giant Pandas to mate (which I've read is next to impossible).
10. The candy here is awesome. They even have a special day set aside for the consumption of candy: Saturday. The grocery stores all have row upon row of bulk candy goodness and on Saturdays, the Swedes line up with their buckets and start piling it in. And just like the people, the candy is cheap!
So there you have it folks: Come to Sweden to eat cheap candy while wandering around by yourself in the dark at 3 p.m., or the light at 3
a.m. and be sure to plan your daytrip during your Government-given 1 year of parental leave in Södertälje to avoid the beautiful people who pay just as much tax as you do.
Thanks for taking the time to learn about another country,
Swedish Jenn
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Seriously, Jenn should be the head of tourism for the lovely country of Sweden, don't ya think?

4 comments:

  1. Wow- I'm not sure if I love Sweden or hate it?

    Weather...bad
    Vacation...good
    Benefits...good
    taxes...bad
    beautiful people...bad (how would I possibly measure up?)
    massages...bad
    locals...bad
    chocolate...good

    OK, Sweden is GOOD. How can you not love a place that celebrates chocolate one day every single week?

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  2. Come on, Julie, if we had that much vacation, we'd be that hot, too. Don't you think? ;)

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  3. I feel you Foursons. I have a love/hate relationship with the country I currently call "home". Let me tell you about the chocolate. You'd be more than happy to give up your favourite brand in America for a taste of the chocolate here. So far, I'm not getting any hotter Hyacynth but I have every faith in your theory and Year 2 will be my year ;-)

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  4. Jenn, you always make me chuckle :) I would have trouble if people didn't get me when I'm looking to make a friend. I hate when people are too uptight. That would probably drive me crazy. The vacation sounds awesome. I would sign up for that. All those bombshells walking around, I bet you feel like you're at a James Bond girl convention or something?

    Great guest post, Jenn!!!

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There's nothing better than good conversation ... but not while talking to myself. Will you play a part in this discussion?

AND will you pretty please have your email linked to your account or leave it for me so I can respond?

Thanks for taking the time to make these thoughts into conversation.

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