Icing season

It can be so short that you almost miss it! That’s what happens in a country like Sweden, where there are 8 different seasons, according to the Sami people. It might seem too much, but there are so many changes between the different seasons, that 4 are not enough to describe the weather throughout the year.

I was looking forward to this icing season, since I practically missed it last year. Unfortunately, the same happened this year. A few days with ice on the landscape, and then the snow kicked in… Don’t get me wrong – I love the snow! – but I have enough time to enjoy it, since it will stay here for the next months! I was just hoping that I could enjoy a few weeks with only ice, to make a nice photo album. On the other side, I’m quite happy since it started snowing: I don’t have to walk on baby steps anymore! Besides, it is a lot nicer to drive on top of a nice layer of snow =)

As for the part of being darker and darker every day… Honestly, with all this snow, I hardly notice it! Plus, in a month, the days start to grow again! Meanwhile, it’s ski time – everyday =D

Swedes – passion for coffee?

There seems to be a passion/obsession for coffee in the Nordic countries. In fact, Finns, Norwegians, Danes, and even Icelanders, drink even more coffee than Swedes!

Why is coffee so popular here? First of all, thanks to fika, the popular coffee break in Sweden, and secondly, thanks to the cold weather. Who does not fancy a cup of coffee when it is so damn cold?

Well, I don’t even like coffee, but I like everything that tastes coffee. In other words, you will never see me drinking a cup of coffee, but you will see me delighting with a coffee ice cream, or tasting a delicious cappuccino!

So, what do I know about coffee? Well, I come from one of the world’s best-known coffee brewers. With more than 3 centuries of experience in brewing coffee, it is not surprising that Portuguese coffee is amongst the favourites. The famous Italian expresso machines, imported to Portugal around 1920s, were responsible for the great quality and intense taste on our coffee.

In Sweden, only recently, coffee machines started improving. There are not so many coffeeshops where you can drink a “normal/decent” coffee. A coffee in Sweden, will always be a bucket of coffee, mostly black, without foam. It doesn’t even smell nice… Whenever my parents come here, they have to endure a long coffee fast, or rely on my Dolce Gusto. They refuse to pay 20-30 SEK for something that reminds them of everything but coffee.

However, Swedes seem to love their coffee. Why bother? I’m just wondering if they have tasted real coffee in Southern Europe (France, Italy, Portugal, Croatia…). If I was a coffee drinker, and I had done so, I don’t think I could drink this coffee anymore…