I went to shul Saturday morning while cartesiandaemon stayed at home recovering from the flight. We'd agreed to meet for lunch, and flatteringly there were so many people wanting to be sociable that it was hard to get away. Anyway, I took my beau to lovely Örtagården so we could both be over-excited about having an entire large table piled up with all different kinds of food, all of it veggie.
We had meant to wander around Djurgården island in the afternoon, which is an obvious tourist spot with parks and museums. But the weather was absolutely foul, squally sleety drizzle, so we headed straight for the first source of shelter in the Nordiska museum. This is a bit like the Fitzwilliam, in that it's an absolutely magnificent building with some very interesting collections. Not quite as cool, but still a very fun place to spend an afternoon. They have an impressive exhibition on about the Sami, the indigenous people who used to be called Lapps. It was a combination of information about the culture, with a sort of meta-museum of all the ways that old fashioned anthropological museums and before that collectors' galleries used to present the "primitive" people as a curiosity.
Sunday we took things fairly easy, as the weather was still not terribly clement. We wandered through Älvsjö to see my Fairy Lake, and then headed into the Old City to do the obvious tourist things. To my slight surprise, I actually found everything I was looking for and the streets obligingly stayed in the right place, so I didn't get lost. We stopped for hot chocolate in one of those far too cute touristy tea rooms that abound there (it felt tactless to walk into the less kitschy Choklad Koppen as an obviously het couple), and ran into someone I know slightly from shul.
I had managed, amazingly, to get us a table for dinner at the famous Hermans, a veggie restaurant with incredibly impressive views over the watery, photogenic part of Stockholm. I'd tried to eat there several times before but it was always booked up. So we watched the night falling over the water, and the glittering lights. The place itself rather odd; I was assuming from its reputation that it was a grand restaurant, but actually it's a funny combination of hippie spiritual centre with country inn, not really very romantic at all apart from the view. The food was superb, and really excellent value; I'm not surprised it's impossible to get a table there, but the atmosphere is sort of studenty and a bit unmemorable. We shared a large trestle table with a group of Americans, which for one thing wasn't at all what you want on a date, and for a second thing, the space was crowded enough that we couldn't reach the buffet table without climbing over them. We had a fantastic evening even though it wasn't at all what we expected and we were horribly over-dressed! Missed the bus home but had a surprisingly pleasant time walking the last couple of miles from Fruängen.
I spent Monday getting teased by my colleagues for having new gossip (my fault really for blushing when someone asked me how my weekend had been!), and organized to grab lunch with cartesiandaemon at the medical union cafeteria, which is pretty good as institutional catering goes. I got through the evening's teaching at least reasonably sensibly, though I was winging it rather.
Tuesday was the Progressive AGM, which was mostly a formality and there was more of the group hanging out enjoying eachother's company than actual business going on. We went out afterwards to Capri, which I had written off as being outside my budget. Indeed, it's not really very good, in spite of the exorbitant prices; it can't decide if it's a pizza and pasta joint or a classy Italian restaurant, and unfortunately has the food expected of the former at the prices appropriate for the latter. In their favour, service was very good, and they coped admirably with 12 people suddenly descending on them. We had a lovely evening though I winced at spending more on an indifferent risotto than I had on three meals out over the weekend.
The person I briefly considered marrying, JS, has now moved to Stockholm. I said I'd help her buy kitchen equipment, so we made an expedition to Ikea, and then I fed her some supper. We get on trememdously well, we were really having a great time chatting while this was going on. She laughed at how dopey and distractable I am in the kitchen, and we were sensible at ending the conversation so she could get home and we could both get up for shul this morning. I have to say that such a convivial evening makes it tempting to reconsider the marriage plan, in spite of all the reasons I know it's a bad idea. We would have such hijinx living together!
This evening I'm heading out to another embryonic Progressive community as the ambassador from the Stockholm group. Looking forward to it, I must say. JS has invited me to shabbat lunch tomorrow, and I can just see repeating a similar pattern to the one I fell into with rav_hadassah in 2006-7. I will make sure not to be clingy, though.