It is time for yet another trip for me, yay! Tomorrow I fly off to the Greek island of Rhodes from the airport in Växjö here in Sweden. Needless to say, I am very excited! :-) The weather in Rhodes is supposed to be sunny with temperatures over 30 degrees Celsius, nice! I say that because we certainly have not had a great summer here in Sweden this year, mostly cold temperatures, clouds and rain. So I definitely look forward to some proper summer weather to finish off my summer season of 2012.
So this is the reason I am going to Rhodes in Greece. I mean, if the sun won't come to me - I will simply have to come to the sun. ;p
Now I will be gone for one week, and I will not bring my laptop - uh oh! Hehe. Therefore I will probably be pretty much off line for about a week now. But I will of course answer all comments, e-mails and so on as soon as I get back. And I will definitely post lots of photos and stories from my trip when I return here on my bloggy as well. So, not much more to say but that I look forward to chatting to you all in about a weeks time and hopefully I will be too busy to miss the cyberworld or my dog Lisen too much. Lisen will stay at my mum's while I am away by the way, where I am sure she will be spoiled (as usual) for the duration of my trip. Hehe. Yeye. Bye Bye for now everyone. :p
My favourite thing about August in Sweden is the Swedish traditional crayfish premiere, yum! So finally a few days ago I had my first taste of beautiful crayfish for this year, and it was super delicious!
I had some whole crayfish, crayfish tails, different cheeses, baguettes and crackers. A simply delicious simple plate of deliciousness - YUM again! :p
My dog Lisen has a very special and loud way of speaking with her eyes. And when I came into the living room the other day I was met by these very intense and loud speaking looks from her.
Now I have no idea why she had buried her head under the teddy bear's legs like that or why she looked like that, a little sad and pissed off kind of. Hehe. But because I was so surprised to find her looking like that when I walked into the living room, I just could not help but laugh at her - which probably intensified her already intense gloom glances at me even more (Lisen does not like when I laugh at her!). Though whatever Lisen did have on her mind when I walked in, I think it passed pretty quickly when I started to photograph her. She seemed to become in a different mood then anyway.
But it is moments like these when I just love having her in my life even more than usual, because Lisen sure knows exactly how to brighten my day - without even knowing it. And after I had taken some photos of her I walked right over to her and gave her a biiiiig cuddle, which I hope made up for me laughing at her earlier and helped her to feel a bit happier. Though what those intense looks actually meant? Well, I guess only Lisen can answer that question... Hm?
The annual Sail Festival took place here in Karlskrona in Sweden this weekend. The Sail, or Sailet - as we call it in Swedish (SweEnglish), is a local tradition dating back to 1980. Originally it was an event where sailboats from around the world made their way to Karlskrona harbour. However, the last couple of years it has mostly consisted of food stands, beer tents and music. But I still think it is a lovely occasion and it is a festival I attend every year.
Now this year my favourite part was the new International Food Corner, where foods from around the world were showcased and sold. But also the rest of the walk along the harbour was very nice indeed. And below are some more moments from Sail Karlskrona 2012 that I managed to capture on camera. :-)
The big sail boat attraction this year was the ship The Brig Tre Kronor af Stockholm.
Which you could actually board and sail with during the festival.
There were also many naval boats and showcases along the harbour.
As well as lots of different market stands and people.
You could buy wigs.
And listen to lovely flute music for instance.
You could also take the little sightseeing train around Karlskrona.
Or run beside it...
And as always at markets (in Southern Sweden anyway), there were plenty of Langos carts at the Sail.
Sail Karlskrona 2012 along the harbour.
Sail Karlskrona 2012 along the harbour continues.
Many people decided to eat and relax along the way.
This old English ice cream bus is a new addition to Karlskrona this summer, it usually stands at The Fish Square but during the Sail Festival they had moved it up here to the harbour. The funny thing about this ice cream bus is that they sell Italian ice cream in there - in an English bus - in Sweden. Hehe.
The International Food Corner! Yay!!
Lots to choose from!
German pretzels (brezels).
Australian barbecue... Now this was an...ehum...unusual food stand to see in Sweden indeed. Lol!
This one was a surprise too, but in a more mouth watering kind of way. Yum!!
English truffles! Big truffles!! And plenty of them too! Hehe. ;p Very popular indeed!
After all those food tents, time for another break.
The big beer tent and stage at the end of the harbour Sail Festival area.
Inside the beer tent area. I was there in the middle of the day, so it was quite calm then.
And in case you felt like paddling along the harbour instead of walking, there were of course also opportunities to do so as well. :p
Now usually the Sail Festival marks the end of summer and vacation for me, but this year I feel like we have not really had a proper summer which could come to an end - because it has been a quite cold summer season. Nevertheless, the Sail is the last big event of the summer here in Karlskrona and therefore I guess summer has sort of ended now. Though I think I will linger on to the hope that a little tiny, tiny heat wave might still finds its way to Karlskrona before August ends. But either way, the Sail Festival this year was a successful one in my opinion. :-)
Finally, to end this post I am going to move on to a completely different topic. Recently I was asked to be interviewed by a nice and talanted fellow named Jay. Now Jay runs the website comicbookandmoviereviews.com where the interview went online yesterday, and it turned out great by the way! Jay truly did a wonderful job putting it all together, so I am very grateful and appreciative for this opportunity - Thank You Jay! :-)
My dog Lisen after a busy day in my mum's garden...
Last week my dog Lisen and I were house sitting for my mum a few days. And because I know how much Lisen loves marrow bones, I decided to buy one for her so she could eat it outside in the garden. What I had not counted on though, was that Lisen was about to tear up my mum's garden in search for the perfect hiding spot for the marrow bone. Something which apparently was a lot more fun than actually eating it... Now I know Lisen enjoys to hide things and dig around, she always has. But for some reason the idea that she was in that type of "dig around and protect" mood when I gave her the bone, did not cross my mind. My bad!
OK, so the obvious thing I probably should have done when I discovered that Lisen was digging around in my mum's flower beds was to stop her - instead I got my camera. Bad Alex again! Hehe. But I just could not resist photographing her, because even when Lisen is a naughty dog - she is still the cutest dog ever!
So below are some photos of Lisen last week when she was completely obsessed with hiding and protecting her marrow bone in my mum's garden.
At first Lisen was all happy just eating the marrow bone.
But then when I came back out after having been inside for a little while, this is what I found...
Apparently the flower pot idea was not a good one however.
So then Lisen decided to hide the bone in this flower bed instead.
But that was not quite right either.
So Lisen quickly removed the bone from there and had a little pondering moment, hm..?
Before she came up with this spot, under a bush by the pond.
And when I came by there to take some photos of her, these are the looks and speech she greeted me with:
You cannot see the bone, right?
It is my booooone!!!
Hey! Let us in, I will not bury the bone among any pillows or in any bed - I promiiiiise! Yeah right... Lol!
I did not let Lisen in with that bone, no sir. Because I know she would have gone straight to a bed and buried the dirty bone among the pillows in there, or rolled it up in the covers. Not very fun to lie down in when it is bed time, I know that from experience! Lol! But after some sweet big eye looks out there on the steps, Lisen finally gave up her dream of being allowed to bring the bone inside. Instead she buried it in one of the flower beds outside and was then allowed in. Though she kept a close eye on everyone who went outside in the garden that entire evening. And as soon as Lisen went outside, she ran straight off to check to see that her bone was exactly where she had left it.
Now I did of course repair the flower beds afterwards, and luckily my mum has not said anything to me about finding any broken flowers. Phew! So I am sure Lisen, despite her frantic digging, did not destroy anything. Though I will definitely think twice before giving Lisen a marrow bone in my mum's garden again in the future. A lesson learned there for me indeed. Hehe. ;p
After a day in the charming city of Gdynia in Poland, it was time to board the ship Stena Line Vision and head back home to Sweden. So in this second post of my mini cruise to Gdynia I will share photos from inside and outside the ship Stena Line Vision, as well as photos from Gdynia harbour as we were leaving it in the evening. And I will finish off my mini cruise Karlskrona - Gdynia photo series with the absolutely stunning sunset we had the pleasure of enjoying out at the Baltic Sea on our journey home.
But first, let us back up to where I left off in the last post. Which was where my sister and I, instead of taking the Stena Line Ferry Bus to the Ferry Terminal at Gdynia harbour, took the local bus (number 150) to the ship from the Train Station at Gdynia City Centre. So when we arrived at the Ferry Terminal at Gdynia Harbour, onboard the ship we went.
Boarding Stena Line Vision at Gdynia harbour after a great day in Gdynia.
Though Stena Line Vision is not that big of a ship, there were still plenty of stuff to do onboard.
Like having a bite to eat in one of the restaurants.
Perhaps even do some gambling...
Ehum - yupp! I did, no luck though...
There was even a mini golf course outside on deck. Hehe.
Nearby the harbour were also lots of houses, roads and a lovely church (I think it is a church?).
But most of all, there were lots of cranes and containers at the harbour.
Now actually Gdynia Harbour was built in the early 1920s, even before Gdynia City got its city privileges - which it did in 1926. In 1938 Gdynia Harbour was the most modern and largest port of the Baltic Sea, as well as the tenth largest in Europe. Today millions of ton of transshipments take place at Gdynia Harbour and hundreds of thousands of containers pass through the harbour every year.
And there certainly were a whole heap of tons of containers there.
As well as cranes and ships.
This is how it looked onboard as we were leaving the busy Gdynia Harbour.
It was a very lovely...
... and relaxing evening...
... as we made our way out of the harbour.
Bye Bye Gdynia. :-)
A bit further out at the Baltic Sea we also got to enjoy this amazing sunset! Indeed a perfect ending to a perfect day.
And this marks the end of my duo travel post report of my journey to Gdynia in Poland with the ship Stena Line Vision. Thank you all for tagging along with me. :-) Next time I will be back with an all every day post from my life here in Sweden with the world's greatest doggy - my beloved Lisen. ;p Wahoo! :-)
Mini Cruise Karlskrona - Gdynia, Expectations
This Sunday I went on a mini cruise with the ship Stena Line Vision from Karskrona here in Sweden to Gdynia in Poland. The trip was two nights on the ship and one day in Gdynia. Though I had been in Gdynia a few times before, it was many years since my last visit. So I was quite curious to see if the city still looked as I remembered it? Which it both did and did not.
1300 Photos - Two Posts
Now because I got a bit crazy with my camera, I took about 1300! photos on this mini cruise, I have had to select some photos out of all those to represent my trip. But I simply could not edit them into one single post, so I will do two. And in this first post I will write about my day in Gdynia with photos of some of the most memorable sights and places I visited there. In my second Gdynia post I will include photos from inside the ship Stena Line Vision as well as photos from the picturesque Gdynia harbour with all its cranes, containers and ships. In both posts I will also share a bit of history and facts about Gdynia.
But before I even got to Gdynia in Poland, I had to of course board Stena Line Vision here in Karlskrona in Sweden. Which is where I will begin the story.
So this was the ship that took us to Gdynia in Poland this Sunday evening. We, my sister and I, boarded it at Verkö Ferry Terminal in Sweden.
Because we were leaving a rather rainy and cold Sweden behind, we were of course hoping to arrive in a sunny Gdynia in the morning.
Short Recap Of Gdynia History
Just in case there is anyone out there (like me) who is not very familiar with the history of the Polish City of Gdynia, I have put together a short recap of it here:
The first time the name "Gdynia" was mentioned was in 1253, when it was referred to as a Kashubian fishing village in the Duchy Pomerania. But it was not until after the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 that Gdynia, along with other cities of the former Polish Pomerania, became a part of the new Republic of Poland. Today the city of Gdynia is a port city located in northern Poland by the Baltic Sea. By itself Gdynia has about 250 000 inhabitants. However, Gdynia is a part of a conurbation with the city of Sopot, the city of Gdansk and suburban areas. Together they make a metropolitan area called Trójmiasto, or Tricity, and have a population of over one million people.
Photos From Gdynia
Now on to the photos from My Day In The Charming City Of Gdynia In Poland.
Though the weather was a bit cloudy at first in the morning when we arrived in Gdynia, it did clear up a bit in the afternoon. Yay! To get to Gdynia City Centre from the Ferry Terminal we took the Stena Line Bus to Gdynia Train Station (in the photo). A ride which took about 7-8 minutes.
From the Train Station we went to this lovely Covered Market nearby, which is one of the places in Gdynia I always stop by when I visit.
Actually this Covered Market was in built in 1935-38 and is one of the old buildings in Gdynia which is still being used for the same purpose as it was originally built for, an indoor market.
And I rather enjoyed to walk around there with the locals and soak up the Polish every day atmosphere.
Also for sale here were: Polish sweets, sauerkraut, cloths, shoes and much, much more.
After a stroll at the Covered Market, here seen from outside, we continued on to Gdynia City Centre.
Where we ran into this guy, Antoni Abraham (1869 - 1923), who was a poet, a Kashubian activist and an advocate of the idea of Pomerania being a part of Poland. In fact, he was the Kashubian representative to the Treaty of Versailles.
Today this statue of him is placed
at Kaszubski Square in Gdynia as a memorial of kashubian culture.
Another kashubian memorial sculpture also located at Kaszubski Square is this super adorable one.
It is called "The Kashubians' Bench" and celebrates the romantic legend of the love between the married couple Jacob and Elizabeth Scheibe. Jacob, who was a fisherman, built a big house for his family here at Kaszubski Square. And the legend says that his wife used to stand on the balcony he built ontop of the house to keep a lookout for her husband's return from fishing. Aww. :-)
After all this sculpture/statue watching it was hard to decide where to go next, hm..?
In the end we decided to go to Kościuszko Square and the beautiful, artificially made, South Pier.
Where there were lots of impressive big ships. For instance, the ship in the photo, ORP Błyskawica, was originally a Grom-class destroyer that served in the Polish Navy during World War II. The ORP Błyskawica is actually the oldest preserved destroyer in the world today. It is also the only ship of the Polish Navy awarded with the Virtuti Militari medal. Today the ORP Błyskawica spends her days as a museum ship along the South Pier.
The most magnificent ship though, I thought, was this one - The Dar Pomorza. Originally this ship was a Polish sailing frigate built in 1909. The Dar Pomorza has served as a sail training ship in Germany, France, and Poland. Today she, just like her neighbour - The ORP Blyskawica, also serve as museum ship along the South Pier in Gdynia.
A busy South Pier I might add.
Also along the South Pier were lots souvenir shops . (By the way, the grey skyscraper in the background is the Sea Towers. It was finished in 2006 and is the tallest residential building in Poland today.)
I, of course, had to buy a magnet here for my souvenir magnet collection at home. :-) But, although those BIG ice creams in the right photo looked very unusual and enticing, I did not buy one of those...
Another stand that caught my attention along the South Pier was this one, Bubble Tea? I had never heard of that before?
But it looked quite intriguing, so naturally I had to look it up when I got home. Hehe.
Bubble Tea Origin
Turns out that Bubble Tea was originally a Taiwanese tea drink that originated from tea shops in Taichung, Taiwan, during the 1980s. Most Bubble Teas contain a tea base mixed with fruit (or fruit syrup) and/or milk. Bubble Tea also contains small chewy tapioca balls, also known as "pearls".
Surprised And Curious
Huh!? I was convinced it would have had bubbles, as in sparkling water, in it at least. Lol! Now I did not try any Bubble Tea this time, but I certainly will the next time I see some! Because I am definitely very curious about how it tastes now after learning all this about the drink.
Something I did eat however was this fresh fried fish with fries and Polish salad. I bought it from one of the many fish stands/restaurants along the South Pier. Very yummy indeed! And not that expensive either, 21 Zlotys - about $6.30, with a 50 centiliter Coca Cola.
Finally we made it to the end of the South Pier and the Kościuszko Square with its two sculptures.
This sculpture was built in honor of all the Polish sailors who lost their lives during World War Two.
And this sculpture is a momument dedicated to the famed Polish author Joseph Conrad.
Who definitely seemed to be looking towards the City Beach in Gdynia to me, also our next stop.
But on our way to the City Beach we got a bit side tracked, because we found free WiFi - YAY! Awesome Gdynia!!
However, after some surfing (on the phone) we did make it to the gorgeous City Beach in Gdynia.
Where it was a bit too cold for a swim though, at least for me. Hehe.
These swans seemed to enjoy themselves in the water though.
Now while I was trying to strike a cool pose for the camera... I could not help but notice the film crew behind me which was in full swing of filming a lesson in actual surfing in water.
Well, that is what it looked like he was trying to teach them anyway... But whatever the guy on the board was doing, I cannot believe how he could be in that water with just those shorts - BRR I say!!
Our last stop before heading back to the Ferry Terminal was the Shopping Mall Batory.
Which was nice and cozy, but not enough stores for me. Lol! So we moved on from there pretty quickly.
But instead of waiting for the Ferry Bus we decided to take the local bus to the Ferry Terminal.
Which Local Bus To Take?
Although it took some asking around to find out which bus number to take, the locals were very nice and helpful so it was not that hard. It turns out that the local bus which stops at the Ferry Terminal in Gdynia, where Stena Line departs from, is bus number 150. We took this bus from the second bus stop behind the Covered Market, near the Train Station. And the bus stop to jump off at is called Terminal Promowy in Polish. Just in case anyone ever needs to know this, because I had a hard time finding this information online in English.
Anyway, I definitely had a very lovely day in Gdynia, with better weather conditions than what we left behind in Sweden too. So a major plus just there. But I must also say that I was pleasantly surprised by how modern Gdynia has become, in comparison to when I first visited the city many years ago. So my newly refreshed impressions of Gdynia are that it is a very charming, up to date and tourist friendly European city. One I am sure I will stop by many times in the future. :-)
Post Number Two
Like I said in the beginning, I will be back with photos from inside the ship Stena Line Vision and Gdynia Harbour next time. So I hope ya'll will join me then. :-)
Some Final Polish Words
Do Widzenia for now (Good Bye in Polish). :p