Well, summer just arrived. At the same time winter ended. This is the year spring forgot to appear.Last week we had snow, hail and blistering winds. This week it’s clear sky and summer temperatures! I know this is summer because I just got the first sunburn of the year and we’re having picnics and excursions every day.
Swedes are funny that way. We literally hibernate during winter. Everyone is dressed in black, or if you’re daring – navy blue, and move quickly through the streets between work and home. We stay indoors, watch movies and drink hot coffee, tea, cocoa or glögg an munch on cookies and sweets.
Occasionally we leave the comfort of our home to do Christmas shopping on the first of advent, search for bargains between Christmas and New Year’s Eve or ski/skate/walk in the snow for a week in February during “sport break” aka winter break. But that’s basically it. We rarely meet with friends and we don’t spend time outside our homes.
But the moment the sun appears cloudless on the sky the towns are suddenly filled with people in t-shirts, shorts, flip flops and sunglasses. Regardless of the temperature. Like my friend who won’t take out the long legged trousers again until September. Everyone is munching ice cream and enjoy lunches with friends and colleagues on restaurant patios that suddenly fill the streets. Every one of them have blankets on every chair for guest to use and if it’s more than a lunch-restaurant they also have outdoor heating.
And, let’s face it, it’s needed. All to often we have the same temperature at Christmas Eve as we have on Midsummers eve. The only difference is that on Midsummers Eve we all sit outdoors in summer-outfits, trying to have meaningful conversations with (or as) wasted people while we’re shivering so much our teeth are chattering.
There’s one more difference; we have sour cream with our herring, don’t eat pork and we have strawberries for dessert. Honestly, that’s the only difference food wise. Swedes eat the same food at every big celebration during the year: Christmas Eve, Easter (Eve) and partly Midsummers Eve! It consists of herring (of 101 different flavors) with either boiled potatoes or a potato casserole with sardines (tastes better than it sounds), eggs in halves garnished with mayonnaise and rom, ham, sausages, meatballs, bead, butter, cheese, snaps and a sweet, carbonated, spicy version of coke called “must”. For dessert we usually have a cake of some sort. For Midsummers Eve we only have herring, potatoes, sour cream and chives followed by strawberries and whipped cream. Period. And no, I didn’t forget to mention the veggies – I did write down potatoes and chives didn’t I?
Since summer arrived so quickly without warning I didn’t check my summer wardrobe properly before I needed summer clothes. It turned out that all my shorts are too big. As in will-fall-of-my-hips-even-though-they’re-buttoned-up-and-have-a-belt. Apparently I’ve lost quite some weight since last summer.
So, on my shopping list on an already strained budget I have to put down two pair of shorts, swim trunks, swim t-shirt, linen shirt (to cover up when it’s sunny, I burn really easy), cap/hat (for the same reason), garden shoes and polo shirts (I can fold up the collar to protect my neck from the sun). And that’s just the things I NEED, not the things I want.
What I really want is to start on testosterone, preferably yesterday, so I can have some body changes done and over with so I can buy my new wardrobe. Everything is a bit too big at the moment, too worn out or too washed out to be good looking. I need new underwear, shorts and trousers, but since I know there will be some changes on T I don’t want to spend a lot of money on clothes I won’t be able to wear for more than half a year. I think I’ll prioritize shorts, polos and a new belt and wait as long as possible with everything else, my appointment for the endocrinologist should arrive in the mail soon.