On this day of Valentine love, here are a few sweet things from my travels.
First, here are some sweet treats from Gränna, Sweden. The home of the Polkagris. What Valentine wouldn’t like a sweet treat in peppermint, or any of the other many flavors.
Polkagris in Granna
The International Market Festival in Liköping brought lots of fudge from Britian.
Fudge from Britain at International Festival in Linköping, Sweden
I enjoyed seeing the flower market in Copenhagen.
Flower Market in Copenhagen
Bakery windows like this one in Stockholm are all over Europe.
Bakery Window in Stockholm
Coletta Candy in Gamla Linköping displays some of their chocolate molds.
Chocolate Molds at Gamla Linköping
Who wouldn’t be thrilled with getting a tree with Amber jewel leaves?
Amber Jewel Tree
Have a very Happy Valentine’s Day!
Globe Trottin Granny
No kidding. The Clarion Hotel in Stockholm is allowing artists to exchange artwork for a night stay in the hotel. Nothing complicated, the artwork must be an original, and signed by the artist. This is not just for established artists, but any artist.
“It’s all really very simple: an artwork — a room — one night,” states their official website. Hotel representative Tess Mattisson said that it’s all for a simple cause.”
In 1628 the beautiful, regal Vasa set out to sail the ocean blue. With much pomp and ceremony, King Gustav II Adolf’s vanity ship was launched. He had ordered the ship built for battle with Poland. Besides the 30 high caliber cannons, and crew of 450, the soldiers numbered 300. The size and abundant ornamentation was also designed to scare the enemy.
Another interesting fact was that the enemy was his cousin, the king of Poland, Sigisimund. Sigisimund had been the King of Sweden from 1592 – 1599. He was deposed as king because of his Catholic faith, in Sweden, a Lutheran State Church.
This made the Swedish king even more resolved to make the ship a big show of power.
With everything set, the ship started navigating through the Archipelago. The soldiers were not on board yet. Just the crewmen, and their familes, who were allowed to be on the ship until it was out of the Archipelago. But only 1300 meters out the ship bowed to the port side, and then bowed again. Water poured into the bottom cannon windows, and the Vasa sunk. The mere size, and insufficient ballast, the lower cannon windows being open, and too low were all factors of the sinking. Complicating things was that the master shipbuilder, Henrik Hybertsson,
fell ill and died early in the building. The construction responsibility went to his assistant, Henrik “Hein” Jakobsson, early in 1626. He was not seasoned enough to be the main shipmaster.
Of the approximately150 on board, it was estimated at the time that about 30 lost their lives. Some things were salvaged right after the sinking. Attempts were made at locating and salvaging the wreck through the hundreds of years. But it wasn’t until 1961 and the work of Anders Franzén, who was a shipwreck researcher that the ship was brought to the surface. He had the help of the Navy and Neptune Salvage firm. The Vasa was brought up very much intact. Because it lay in brackish waters for 300 years the wood of the vessel was preserved.
It has taken years of research, and restoration, but you can now see the ship from the 1600’s in the Vasa museum in Stockholm. An amazing 95% of the wood is original. Although the wood has preservatives injected, thus making it a dark color, there are models of what it would have originally looked like with it’s ornate sculptures, and bright colors.
As science has progressed, you can see at the museum VERY lifelike heads of what some of the crew that succumbed on board looked like. It gives you a somewhat eerie feeling, but amazing at the same time. Here is a slideshow taken of our visit.