So here I am sitting at the window of my old buddy Tim’s house, watching the sun set on the longest day of the year, and feeling rather good actually. It’s almost midnight and the sun is still glowing gold in the western horizon behind a great stand of oaks and birches, the sky will not really get dark at all, and the sun will rudely awaken me at some ungodly hour in the morning
But I don’t care because it’s all just lovely. I came out here for a midsummer party, met some excellent people both old and new, did lots of silly dancing around the Swedish midsummer penis, ate mounds of food (including the initially rather disturbing pickled herring, called sill, which I now am a huge fan of), drank booze of many different colours, and talked the ear off anybody who would listen.
Then I slept in a tent, with the cool air blowing around my toes and woke to a great breakfast at a long table, as if we were hobbits at the home of some ridiculously over-enthusiastic forest sprite. How many strawberries can you tuck away over 2 days? Answer: a great deal.
And then I drove a car. Tim, you see is one of my driving trainers, and he bravely offered to let me pilot his car after me not having been in control of a car for 12 years, and only then on the other side of the road.
But it went great – my body, to my great surprise, easily remembered all the pressing and pulling of things and I drove happily around for an hour with a silly grin and my elbow hanging nonchalantly out the window, feeling like a big man. Driving license, you are within my grasp.
In the evening we went for a walk and saw a dozen fantastic wooden houses, drenched in greenery, all of which I want. Just a few chickens and a bee-hive or two and Bob’s my uncle, or at least a creepy friend of my parents who I am encouraged to call “uncle” even though he isn’t remotely related to me and smells of old socks.
So for now I am content, in this strangely serene state brought on by swathes of countryside, pickled fish, gasoline and eternal sunlight. Sometimes all you need is just a window from which to watch the bats whipping about and the gold-flecked clouds drifting past.
And a pair of fluffy dice.