Hej! My name is Kristin Lund and I’m gonna share this blog with Kate in September and then write it solo. Kate will post more about the transitions she is making in her life.
Like Kate, I am an American expat living in Sweden. Unlike the youthful Kate, I am in my forties, okay, late forties, so I bring a little different perspective to this blog. As I write this, I have been in Sweden for approximately nine months. For the first six months that I was here, I lived with friends in Uppsala. Now I live in greater Stockholm. I previously wrote a blog for Sweden.se about working in Sweden.
I hope to bring a unique perspective to this blog. I’m a little bit of a “one-off” you see. [Just looked that phrase up, ”one-off,” and it’s got an interesting provenance. Read more here.]
Where was I? Oh yes, my being odd. Here’s the thing, I haven’t met too many other expats who are here in Sweden for the same reason I am here. Nearly all the expats I meet came here for love. They fell in love with a Swede–usually they met in another country while both were on vacation–and then they moved to Sweden. I have met precious few who have fell in love with the whole country.
Blind Date with Sweden
That’s what happened to me and I basically had a blind date with Sweden in which I fell in love with it before I even got here. The short version of my unusual story is that I studied in Australia in 1984. While there, I met a few Swedes that had the effect of turning on a light switch in my brain that I never even knew existed. I probably didn’t even know where Sweden was before that time. Anyway, something about meeting these two people made me become super-interested in Sweden. I even began learning Swedish on my own, while still in Australia.
After that, I began visiting Sweden and found that I truly did love it.
Note: Although my name makes me sound Swedish, I grew up never hearing about Sweden. My last name comes form my mother’s side and it’s likely that there were Swedish immigrants on that side of the family but I have never met any of them and there’s very little information about that side of the family.
Cut to nearly 30 years later. What at first seemed like a phase is still going gangbusters. I began regularly visiting Sweden in 1986 and returned every few years. My dream was to move there permanently. Today the couple I met is no longer a couple but I am still friends with both of them.
Finally in 2011, the planets aligned and I was able to find a job and move to Sweden. I gave up a lot to be here but I feel that it’s worth it. I miss my family, the fruit and vegetables, the cheap prices, and sometimes, the sunny weather. But other than those things, I don’t often miss home.
Today I work as a Technical Writer in Stockholm. One and a half months ago my dog, “Rabbit,” a mixed-breed that I adopted from a shelter six years ago, joined me in Sweden. With her help, I plan to also blog about what it’s like to be a new canine “Svensk” as well as a human one.