Upon arriving in Stockholm mid-January, I was not prepared for a Swedish winter which seemed to leave me knee deep in snow. The city was covered in a blanket of snow and the sun would begin to set in the early afternoon. Fortunately, my student housing is conveniently next to Stockholm University and has its fair share of surprises. For example, every Tuesdayat 10:00pm sharp – the whole of Lappis would erupt with screams out of every window for a few minutes by students relieving stress. Or, behind the housing, long trails through the woods would lead you to a beach that would be frozen during winter.
Now, I am almost halfway through my exchange at Stockholm University. After 2 months of fewer hours of light and an abundance of snow – Spring has finally approached and the temperature rising to 10 degrees, Stockholm seems like an entirely different place. The BBQ pits in the centre of the student housing was finally fired up last weekend on Stockholm’s first clear skies and sunny day. There hasn’t been a dull moment in this city even in the gloomy days because the cityhas much to offer.
The classes at Stockholm University for exchange students are quite different from I am used to back at UTS. Here, we take 1 class at a time and they would run for approximately 2 months before a 5 hour final exam. There would be 2 to 4 classes in the 1 semester depending on the study load. It can be intense at times but it allows you to focus on the one subject and not worry about trying to juggle a few subjects.
Stockholm is a convenient place to travel to and from due to its major airport. At the end of February, we were able to travel to Kiruna, northern Sweden, to try catch the Northern Lights. We were able to see it on most of the nights that we stayed. During the day, we had the opportunity to go snowmobiling and husky sledding.
This has definitely been an experience of a lifetime and I hope the remainder of my time here doesn’t fly by too quickly.