Stuck In Stockholm

Is that good or bad? As seen by an artist from Eastern Europe

Posts Tagged ‘things to do’

Drottningholm at twilight

Monday, October 29th, 2012

A quick trip to Drottningholm, the residence of King of Sweden.

A couple of days ago, on my way to town I got off the bus and walked back one stop to shoot a few pics – it was worth, wasn’t it? :-)

If you have time for a few more clicks, you can view them larger and have a breathtaking experience, enjoy! (On the photo’s page: Actions => View all sizes)

Drottningholm 2012Oct (19)

Drottningholm 2012Oct (17)

Drottningholm 2012Oct (14)

Drottningholm 2012Oct (15)

Drottningholm 2012Oct (7)

And if you visit Stockholm and you have 2 hours to kill, Drottningholm is a must see. To get there, you take the green metro line to Brommaplan (direction: Hasselby strand), and a number of buses go there, it’s only 3 stops.

Brought to you by Andrea’s Cash Machines – Pick Yours

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Thursday, September 6th, 2012

On Sunday a very non-Swedish thing happened in Viking Land: a party.

Our new neighbors threw a house warming party right next day after moving in. The usual story: ageing Swede got a beautiful young lady from Thailand. While this in itself, why it is a usual story for Swedish men to export women into a country where there are probably more single gals than anywhere else, would deserve a full essay, here I only wanna give you a little impression of how to let your hair down when you have a small, international crowd.


First of all, there was food, drink, food and drink. Mike, a Libanese man around 60, made sure that everyone’s plates and glasses were full, at all times. He himself mostly drank of the bottles: simply pouring the wine down his throat, without swallowing.

Then there was MUSIC. That’s quite something, for in the past one year since I am at this place, I heard music in the area maybe 10 times only. Of which 4 was some organized event on the next islands.

Here we had a couple of CDs from Dubai: Arabic music with modern touch. Actually I did like the one with 4 gay male singers, they sounded 100x more masculine then most of the straight boy bands of Western pop music…

So we had Arabic music from a JVC ghetto blaster, gotta hear Bedouine songs at the table performed by Mike who didn’t only have a huge potbelly but a great voice as well, we watched and learned a little belly dancing from a Libanese girl, a traditional dance from the Syrian-Turkish border from a guy from Syria, and of course I did a song or two – Hungarian folk songs from Slovakia which they loved.

Yeah, we had also a bit of bottle dance, which is normal for Hungarian female folk dancers except that this wine bottle was very narrow and tall, almost full.

All of us had a wonderful time – maybe except for the belly dancer’s gorgeous daughter who would rather hide in a car and read a book. For me personally (beside seeing how my little songs that no-one understood a word of, were touching hearts), the most wonderful experience was to see my landlord, his wife, brother and his wife, all four hearing impaired, having great fun, enjoying the music, the live songs, and dancing crazy! They have been saying all the time (perhaps in their entire life?), that they prefer to associate with deaf people, because of the barriers in communication with others.

Well, it seems that sometimes it’s much easier to jump over some borders, whether they be physical or only in one’s mind – I hope you don’t mind me getting slightly philosophical, even about a party :-)

Ps: yes, I do perform as a singer or dancer for private, corporate, community etc events, find out more on my website

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Vrångö Beach

Saturday, July 7th, 2012

Summer is here even in Sweden (not to be compared to my Hungary though where they have 40 degrees these days…)

Earlier I promised to go out to the beach in Vrångö island, so here you go, have a great time:

Vrangö Beach - 1. Photo: Andrea Gerak

More pictures here

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Gothenburg Southern Archipelago – 1

Monday, May 28th, 2012

Ever since in Sweden, I guess I had my most wonderful time…

Visited Göteborg (Gothenburg for you English speakers) for the very first time, and at the first impression, I liked the atmosphere better than in Stockholm.

One day my dear friend (who was an awesome host, tack igen! :-) took me to the Southern Archipelago, which is absolutely a must, if you are around the area.

And it’s very easy: you take a tram to Saltholmen, and a ferry from there, will cost you a tram ticket.

Let the pictures talk! Part 1 – before boarding

Click on this one for more:

Travel by Andrea Gerak: Gothenburg Southern Archipelago

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Winter on the lake – 2

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

After being a bit sick and dealing with a lot of other stuff, back here with my blogs.

A little more snow & ice, before it goes away – but March in Sweden doesn’t mean spring, it is normally end of April when I put away my winter coat…

Continuing from last time when I showed you one of my favorite hiding places by the lake (this is from my Nature photo blog), now we actually go out to the open “water”:


Some more gorgeous pictures, if you click on this one.

This is definitely one thing to do around Stockholm in the winter: walk on the frozen lakes – and even better, if you have a pair of skates…

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Bus trip to Björkvik – 1

Sunday, February 26th, 2012

It was such a gorgeous, sunny Sunday, although cold and also windy at times.

Originally, I thought I would go out to the Archipelago ang get some sea breeze, but instead I decided to take a shorter trip only and discover Viking Land a bit more.

So now I went all the way to the farthest tip of Färingsö island, to Björkvik. By the way, in Sweden there are 57 settlements with this name… you can identify this one by that it belongs to Ekerö municipality.

It’s a nice trip if you want to see more of the Stockholm area than just the city. Take the blue bus 176 from Brommaplan to the end station Stenhamra Solsidan, then change to the red 317. That one doesn’t have a busy schedule to say the least, but if you have no luck with catching a connection, you can walk one or two (or more…) stops, instead of waiting.

A good couple of pictures in my photo blog, click on this one:

Bus trip to Björkvik, winter (46)

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Tomten är här – Santa is here

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

One more for today; here just quickly because it’s a lot of photos and I simply can’t do this double work.

And they anyway look much better in larger size than what I could put here.

Santa Claus Octopus

So please go over to my photo blog

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Impromptu concert in the subway

Friday, November 18th, 2011

Östermalmstorg subway station has a nice dome with unbelievable acoustics. It’s interesting to watch how people react to the special sound there. I would think they would go singing, whistling, humming – giving out some noise from their mouth, as the most natural way for a human to make a sound.
No. Most of them just would stomp their feet.

So it was a great experience on Wednesday evening to hear a young girl strumming her guitar and singing. I talked with her a bit; she wanted to do a live recording of one of her songs for her album coming out today, recorded at an unusual location. My singer heart went boom; this place is really meant for playing music and singing.

Ladies and Gentlemen, please welcome on stage Edith Backlund, playing Dance In Circles (click on her name for the website and to listen)

Impromptu concert in the subway - #1

Impromptu concert in the subway - #2

Impromptu concert in the subway - #3

Photos (which look better on black background, by the way): by Andrea Gerak

Edith Backlund official site:

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Back in town

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

Never a Mistake

Read the story

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Elisabeth Kontomanou at Huddinge Jazz

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Since my 4 years I have spent in Sweden, one of my greatest experiences was this concert last Friday: Elisabeth Kontomanou at Huddinge Jazz Festival (Stockholm).

The internationally touring brilliant singer put an outstanding show on the stage, featuring her outstanding vocals conveyed with passion and communication, great stage presence, remarkable musicians and vocalists, songs that gave chills, tears or joy to the audience, making them clapping, tapping, singing along, laughing, or submerging deep in their thoughts and emotions, evoked by the melodies.

A very professional performance and very human in the same time; Elisabeth is a master of keeping contact with the audience in a lovely manner.

Have to mention how respectfully she treated her colleagues on stage: six of them being excellent young talents (three of them in fact her sons!), and despite of that we could witness a few first time performances, such as the opening song, each performer did a great job. Apparently all of them on the stage enjoyed every minute of the show, just as did the audience.

Lead Vocals : Elisabeth Kontomanou
Drums : Donald Kontomanou
Bass : Lars Ekman
Piano : Pelle Karlström
Guitar : Erik Söderlind
Guitar : Joey Belmondo
Backing Vocals : Pixie Jakobsson
Backing Vocals : Christine Sundberg
Special Guest : Gustav Karlström

To get a little taste, open Elisabeth Kontomanu’s MySpace and play the songs while looking at the photos.

Elisabeth Kontomanou at Huddinge Jazz 2010. Photo: Andrea Gerak

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