An American in London

Erika Escueta

While Villanovans may travel to New Jersey or New York City on the weekend, it’s not out of the ordinary to hear any of the Global Citizens saying to each other during dinner time, “Um, I think I’m going to Stockholm, Sweden for the weekend. You know, it’s no biggie.”

Watch out for us on the weekends: Global Citizens are looking for global domination. Five girls went to Rome. A couple of other kids went to Paris, and a group of about eight, including yours truly, found themselves jetsetting to Stockholm.

If you were to ask me what I knew about Stockholm a couple of weeks ago, my knowledge would be sparse. Meatballs. Models. Saab. Ikea. A couple of obscure indie rock bands. That’s about it.

When we arrived, the first thing that came out of my lips was “BRRRR!” Being a native of southern California, I’ve never experienced a real winter. Frankly, from what I hear, the winter at Villanova frightens me. The average weather during my weekend travels ranged anywhere from 12 to 25 degrees Fahrenheit.

Because of the harsh freezing arctic climate, our explorations revolved around the cold. We started our first day with a boat tour of the archipelago. For this tour, my attire was inspired by the Eskimos because I wanted to sit on the outdoor snowy deck. The tour pointed out places of interests such as the Vasa, a 17th century warship that sunk after 20 minutes on its first voyage.

However, being kids at heart, our favorite part of the tour may have been watching our boat break the icy Baltic and getting to sit on these snazzy wolf furs while roughing it on the deck.

Later that afternoon, we went to an ice hockey game, Sweden vs. Russia. I found it astonishing how influential American culture is in Sweden. All of the songs played in the arena and chants were American.

I found myself ice skating, or at least attempting it. I think I made the other Villanovans look like a squad of Tara Lipinskis and Brian Boitanos. My numerous bruises from falling can vouch for that.

As I previously mentioned, when thinking of Sweden, meatballs come to mind. Needless to say, our group was on a hunt for them. On our last night in Sweden, we found them in a 700-year-old prison. I know this sounds like the buildup to the most scrumptious meal, but I won’t lie. We were disappointed.

I was back in London on Monday afternoon, just in time for class. I have a giant appreciation for the 50-degree weather.

Cheers, Villanova!