Thursday, May 19, 2011


Malmo is only 20 minutes from Lund by bus, and the first city as you cross the bridge from Copenhagen to Sweden. It is the third largest city in Sweden with around 300,000.

I wasn't expecting much, which is perhaps why I did not end up visiting until nearly the last month here, but I was pleasantly surprised. They have a well preserved old town, and although it does not match the scale of the one in Stockholm, it is full of very old tiny cottage like houses and cobbled streets.

The most famous attraction is a tall building in the middle of nowhere called the turning torso. Other than that they had some really nice parks filled with tulips, some rivers, waterfronts, a few plazas, and a castle from the 1400s constructed as a stronghold for Denmark when they controlled this area.

Other than that, due to it's location, Malmo has been the first port of entry to Sweden for immigrants, and hosts a large population from Arab countries (Iraq, Iran, & Lebanon mostly), plus Poland. About 30% of the city is immigrants (probably the most of any city in Sweden). That certainly seems to be a point of political contention and media attention nowadays given the slow trend taking place in Europe that seems to be anti-immigratory.

I tried to blend in, guess it didn't work:

Part of Malmo castle with a moat:

Their main train station has videos and slide shows projected on to the wall. No fair:

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Blue and Yellow Furniture

Photos from an obligatory trip to a Swedish IKEA.

Excited and anticipatory:

The ingång...almost there...

Realizing in diappointing fashion that it is same thing except the language:

Got tired walking through that maze...mid-point nap in the bed department:

Thinking of offering them my couch testing services:

Possibly the cheapest meal you can find in all of Sweden. 8 meatballs, 3 potatoes, brown sauce, and lingonberry jam...$2. I'll take seconds.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Rhode Island Fire

Here is a first hand video of a fire that occurred in a club in Rhode Island in 2003. A good account of how humans may act in a fire and reminder or even first time lesson to learn how incredibly fast a fire can grow and become uncontrollable and deadly. 100 lives were lost.

(Here is a link to the video as well...

Monday, May 9, 2011


Walpurgis Night( Valborg in Sweden), is a day in Sweden and many other Northern European countries intended to celebrate the coming of spring, commonly accompanied by large bonfires and other traditions, on April 30th and May 1st.

Celebrations differ even within Sweden. Calm or traditional celebrations are found in Stockholm or non-University cities. The most pronounced celebrations are in the two main University cities of Uppsala, as well as here in Lund. Here in Lund, on May 1st, the men's choir sings on the steps of the academic building in the town center, and this has been broadcast for years to the rest of the country on live TV.

I guess, however, that if the men's choir singing is considered a big celebration, then we're in trouble. The celebration that really engulfs the city focuses around its university population and takes place on Saturday.

Essentially, groups of students from all over the University, thousands, plus people from neighboring cities (Malmo, Copenhagen), get up early, between 7 & 8am, and begin the day with some champagne and breakfast. Then, they drink some more, and then more, and well, for thousands of people it seems to amount to a whole day of intoxication. This is accompanied by picnics, barbecuing, and lots of dancing.

The whole event takes place in the city park of Lund. It was reported that a record 25,000 people were in the park. The pictures below show the massive crowds.

A sad part of this whole event is that the amount of trash created and wreckage left behind is unbelievable. The city had to pay 150 people to clean up after all these people. A little theme I've noticed here, university student's seem to expect other people to pick up after themselves.

The cleanup:

This photo is titled 'Stupidity Reigns'

Andrej, Dennis, Mark:

The bonfire pre-burning:

In the US these guys at the very least probably get kicked out. In Sweden, the police tell them to get down, shake their hand, and have a laugh:

People dancing to some electronic music:

The wreckage. I think the can collectors enjoyed this day.

An article:

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Really loved this city.

The waterfronts, boats, cafes, buildings, parks, restaurants....Just a great, beautiful city.

The old town is filled with tiny streets and fairy tale like buildings:

One of the many waterfronts:

The winter is long enough that you just want to sit outside when you finally get the chance, even if it means using the blankets the bar provides everyone!

Hanging out with Mathias, Samanthi, and Linda for the Easter holidays!

The architecture in all the neighborhoods differs and I found it to be one of the most fascinating things about the city!

A 3 story circular library:

Asparagus soup with sour cream in it. Damn good!

Reindeer wrap

This ceiling in the city hall is designed like the bottom of an old wooden warship:

Balcony sitting on a nice day!