The lack of focus on women’s history has been a greater problem than the lack of sources.VasaMuseet Kvindnoord Exhibit
This weekend I spent Saturday in Stockholm. After my nine hours of classes on Friday, a group from my homestay-network left, by train, for a day in Stockholm. While planning this trip, the group that I was with chose to take the five hour train late Friday night to then wake-up in Stockholm on Saturday. Independently another group from my homestay-network decide that this weekend would be lovely to spend in Stockholm as well. We found this out last Tuesday and realized that independently we all booked the same hostel to stay in, Hostel Dalagatan.
We started our Saturday with a brisk one-hour walk through Stockholm. Stockholm, we soon realized, doesn’t believe it right it wake up and show your face until at least 10:30 am. It was desolate! Our first stop of the day was at the Vasa Museum, where in 1960, divers found the sunken wreck of a 17th Century war boat nearly 70 meters long and 50 meters high (about as long as the wingspan of a 747, and high as the Arc-de-Triumph).
One of the primary exhibits in Vasa, discussed the role women played in the construction and management of the vessel. I found it amazing to learn that women and children were common place on war ships while not in battle; many would sail with their husbands around the harbor or in Vasa’s case a maiden voyage. Yes, the ship made it a grand total of 1,500 meters (less than a mile) before a light squall capsized the massive ship killing 50 people on board.
We then heading over to Skansen, an open air museum and zoo. While there we got to see beautiful lemurs, we did not pay the extra 15 dollars to walk into the exhibit with them; wolverines, meandering about; and 3 moose, or is it 3 meece? It was intriguing to see the many different period correct houses present with the park from churches to houses to village halls.
As we walked toward the old town of Stockholm, Gamla Stan, we were met with thongs of people. It just so happened that the Stockholm half marathon was starting in about an hour. We decided the best thing to do would be explore as much of the island as possible and then come back to watch the start of it. Here we toured the Royal Chapel a wondrous piece of 18th century architecture. We made it back to the start line to watch eight waves of almost 1500 runners each start their half marathon in five minute intervals. It was impressive!
For late night activities we decided to have dinner at Pelikan, a moderately priced restaurant, where we all got Swedish meatballs. The food was surprisingly quick, we had just ordered, gotten our wine, bread delivered, and maybe two minutes after we got our food. It was delicious. We met up with the other group from our homestay-network and chose to go to Aifur, a viking themed bar, to try mead. We were pleasantly surprised to find that every time someone joined a table, the wait-staff held a viking toast with clapping, loud speeches, etc. The atmoshpere was just awesome.