I’d say #3 explains this time of the winter the best: a dull, listless mood. Not so much depressed, but it could get that way fast. For us, too, there has been a bit of #1: a state of inactivity or stagnation.
So, on Sunday, instead of being bored with the same routines, we decided to take a drive, get a change of scenery, and invite the stagnation to go elsewhere for a bit. No destination in mind, we ended up just driving in the direction of Söderköping, a small town known mainly for its awesome ice cream shop.
We’d been through there once late last summer, on the way back from Stegeborg castle/ruins with friends. We stopped at the ice cream place, waited in a very long line for our ice cream (there’s a window to order from, or you can go inside and sit down and get an ice cream creation of epic proportions), watched a few yachts go through the canal locks, then continued back home. No real look around the town.
Sunday, we decided to stop in again and try to find a place to eat lunch. Sundays in Sweden are quiet, especially in the winter. There were only a few places open and a few people out, and it was rain/snowing sidewise and really chilly.
Despite the weather, we strolled around a few blocks, snapped some pictures, became surrounded by mallards, and then had a great little lunch at Habiba café (we split the BEST brownie ever). It really was the perfect, quick, little change of scenery I needed to ward off some of those winter doldrums.
Matt said, while we were there, he had started to get to the point of you’ve seen one Swedish town, you’ve seen them all. Which sometimes feels true, in much the same way that a lot of American towns must feel to foreigners (strip malls with all the same shops/restaurants/etc.). Swedish towns still boast more variety than just Starbucks for coffee joints, and there are guaranteed good pastries around somewhere, but there really is slim pickings when it comes to food choices/variety. For foodies like us, half the fun of exploring somewhere new is different and good food, too. In any case, Söderköping has some really fun architecture and boutiques, and the water that runs through town is beautiful to walk along, in any season. It felt special and different.
I had planned on taking my Mom to this area while she was visiting last September, but we never made it. I’m definitely going to remedy that the next time she, or anyone else, visits because it’s a really cute place.
Plus, hello, ice cream. Duh.