Places I Remember…

an old Beatles-song, that could have been the theme song for my whole trip back to Sweden [except the Skåne part, where I’d never been before].

This is a view from Västerås, where I went to school 1971/72. That’s a long time ago, so I guess it’s only natural that I didn’t recognized all that much.

The areas near to where the school used to be, were still familiar … the street names and so on, and also the downtown area, but that was pretty much all.

In Västerås, I didn’t feel any kind of ‘nostalgia’ or anything like that … it was just so nice to re-connect with my friend Anita, with whom I worked for twelve years and have kept in contact with ever since.

When I look at my pictures from there, I realize that had I seen them, taken by somebody else, I would never have figured they were from Västerås … hardly even Sweden. So much happens with cities in just a few years, and in my case forty years had gone by!!! Also … being sixteen and first time away from home is a big difference to being fifty six!

Amazingly enough, the small café, where we used to hang out, by the river, was still there. We went there one day for coffee and pastries, and I took this outside of the café, which is in the red brick building to the left in the picture.




A Postcard to Myself … from 1971!


It’s me! It’s December and I’ve been here now for almost four months. It’s been tough.

There are twelve rooms in the barrack where I live. Hence, we were twenty four girls in this building from the beginning. Some have left.

Not all girls in my class live in this barrack … a few live here in Västerås, so they, of course, stay at home.

The classes are alright I guess, except the shorthand. As you well know, I’m lefthanded and the teacher also seems to be hellbent on that I’ll never going to learn shorthand.

I’ve made a few, stupid decisions since I got here … one being to have an afro permanent. It somehow took some colour out of my hair and turned me almost blonde. When I went home in November, I’d also lost so much weight, that Mum poured cream into my milk when she thought I didn’t see it.

Boy, was I ever sick on that train ride back home! They shouldn’t have put me on that train … I had pneumonia! I had to wait for quite some time in Uppsala train station, and I thought I’d die … could hardly breathe!

Before I left, I had Karin to put my hair up in huge curlers, in order to at least make it look less frizzy and to NOT scare my Mum out of her wits. When I got off the train in Härnösand, it was pouring rain … go figure! There used to be some old photo of me, with my collar bones sticking out, but I’ve lost it.

As I said, it’s December 1971 now and soon time to go home for Christmas and I’m sick again. The school Dr. told me that next pneumonia will be the death of me. We’ll see… He gave me some cough syrup with both alcohol and morphine in it!

More to come … later!

[for this post I tried to google the streets around where I lived, the school and so on. Found nothing. Then I remembered Google Street View! Turns out there’s now a big grocery store, where the school once stood … and just a parking lot where I lived. The hotdog stand, which I remembered, is now «Asia House» 🙂 ]