Gävle, Sweden

September 6, 2001

On the overnight train here, I see a moose's horns, with patches of still red blood, and hide neatly folded in the luggage area. I think of the Lapish girl's observation on the threatened Samis.

After a sleep, I wake up early to see the best of Swedish scenery. Steaming lakes amidst forested hills. The low fog allows the long grasses to show, but covers the ground in watercolor softness.

In town a few hours later, I'm thoroughly not impressed, though I admit I'm now spoiled on what a city can be. Here's an ugly old church, an old town of only 2 or 3 streets and "the castle" looks like a large office building without any decor what-so-ever.

I'm not blaming for anyone for this. The climate never allowed the Renaissance explosion here. At least all the accommodation in Scandinavia was clean and spacious. There is a simple modern style to Swedish showers and furniture (I think I like it, but I'm not sure).

I hope the next town has more to offer than shiny bathrooms.

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