I come from the warm tropics of the Philippines so when I first came to Sweden, I felt like I was inside our freezer every single day on a 24 degrees Celsius summer day. It was not easy. This temperature is how I set my air conditioner in the Philippines with a thick, cozy blanket on me. When I saw people almost naked or wearing sleeveless shirts and short shorts, I was feeling like an alien wearing pants and a jacket. I remember one day at the park seeing everyone, again almost naked sunbathing on a real sunny day when I showed up wearing pants and a thick jacket under a bright pink umbrella. I was so afraid of my skin getting dark since I kinda used a powerful whitening lotion from the Philippines.
Then winter came, I was feeling horrible than ever. I didn’t want to go out because I felt like the coldness was biting the inner core of my bones. And oh, I freaked out noticing almost only gray skies with slight rain showers and wind nearly everyday. Then darkness comes at 3:00 o’clock! I mean, c’mon! Seriously I felt like this was insane. Somehow I have realized how traveling can be so good as a way to educate yourself. I had no idea before that somewhere on earth there’s a place as crazy as this. I remember one of my grade school teachers was telling us that there is a place like this on earth but I had no idea why I did not ever believe her until I came to Sweden!
Well, time goes by. I went home then came back then went home again and came back. Wait…. Why do I always come back? Certainly there is something about Sweden that makes me just wanna stay. Surprisingly, the last time I went home, I could hardly breathe because I felt like 24 degrees Celsius was too warm for me. I do love the cold temperature in Sweden now, but I’m still trying at the moment on accepting the darkness in the winter.
Surely Sweden has its own charm that we haven’t just discovered until we really go through the entire process of total acceptance and that there is a little heaven in this darn cold and dark country.