Holy cheese

A while ago I made a mistake. I had Swedish friends over for dinner. When he tried the cheese, one of them said: “This cheese is weird, it has so little taste.” “Well, it’s supposed to be Präst”, I said (Präst being a Swedish kind of cheese). “Oh really?”, the other replied. “It definitely doesn’t […]

Childhood heroes

To close a German childhood education gap, I showed A short clips from Die Sendung mit der Maus. During those, Die Maus usually solves a problem, often using parts of its body. Tail becomes propeller, whisker becomes baton… When the third clip started, A asked “Will he use the tail again?” That question surprised me. […]

Another Ronja experience

I usually feel that I have adapted very well to Swedish mentality but there are moments when I can’t deny that I’m truly German. A and I went to a nature reserve close to Uppsala to enjoy a Sunday in October. A very Swedish experience: Hiking through a mixed forest with huge stones covered in […]

A short moving typology

For the past month my life has been dominated by one activity: moving. I’m an expert now. And I’ve discovered some very different ways of moving. The party move Fifteen people arriving in the morning, everything’s packed, sandwiches are prepared. After not even five hours the work is done and we’re having a barbecue at […]

Swedish season logic

It started with an innocent smalltalk question. “How long are you going to stay here?”, my colleague asked. “Until midsummer”, I replied, “a couple of weeks.” I shouldn’t have added that. The reaction was dramatic. “Don’t say it’s only a couple of weeks until midsummer! I can’t stand that. I cannot stand anything out there!” […]

What you can buy in the streets of a city in Senegal

Oranges. Clementines. Whole peanuts, salted peanuts, sugared peanuts. Botteled water. Water in plastic bags. Shoes. Cell phone prepaid cards. Broomsticks. Watermelons. Mangoes. Headphones. T-shirts. Pork. Beef. Chicken. Fish. Dried fish. Fences. Cupboards. Doors. Windows. Plastic bowls. Newspapers. Baskets. Earrings. Bananas. Apples. Tomatoes. Milk. Car wheels. Sun glasses. Clocks. Cashews. Cell phone cases. Radios. Papayas. Carrots. […]

Why I bike

The city I live in has a bad reputation. It isn’t said to be beautiful (which is true) and many have heard of its Nazi communities or the “no-go-area” (where I live). According to the story in a national newspaper, basically everyone here is unemployed, illegal or criminal. The police must be pretty busy, dealing […]

Day Savers

To do some research I had to go to Otta, a small town 250 kilometers south-east of Trondheim. The nearly four hour ride (Norwegian roads and speed limits… ) led through spectecularly beautiful landscape, up and down the mountains, but it was challenging to keep concentrated on driving. I was nervous about the ride back […]

Hei til deg, Norge!

My job leads me to Norway this week so today – again – I got up at 4 and travelled to Stavanger – on time! I’ve been super excited about this because it’s my first time in Norway, SKAM-country with its oh-so-cheerful language, but it feels like the first day was rather non-Norwegian. When I […]

NYC in 141 and a half words

Four days. On my own. Crowded. People. Black. Brown. Yellow. Red. White. Mixed. People. Rainbow-colored. Glittering. Celebrating. Proud. People. Pride. Marching. English. Spanish. French. Some German, complaining of course. Chinese. Dutch. Swedish. Some Norwegian, delighted of course. Bedford-Stuyvesant. Baptist church. Gospel. Worship. Block party. Firework. Street food. Street fruits. Mexican, Indian, Cuban cuisine. A burger. […]

Off to America

I’m typing this text at a gate at Frankfurt Airport. It’s a big day. For the first time in my life I’m travelling to the US, and even more, leaving Europe, the continent I love. And already now, I’ve spent incredibly much time, thoughts and effort on this journey. Of course the only reason why […]


It’s Karneval at home! From an intellectual perspective I understand that people find this tradition entirely weird but honestly I feel deeply sorry for them. Those who do not love Cologne’s mentality have not understood this local patriotism paired with tolerance, expressed in thousands of songs: People sing to their city, its quarters and colors, […]

Food recommendations vol. 4

Finally, the Stockholm food guide comes to an end. FLFL: delicious Levantine kitchen, much space to sit and still a nice atmosphere. Södermalm. Lily’s Burger: Authentic American burger place with good and fat burgers and super sweet milkshakes for reasonable prices. Södermalm. Phil’s Burger: Upper Class style and higher prices compared to Lily’s. Nevertheless good […]

Fika/food recommendations vol. 3

Princess Konditoriet: Classy Swedish cake shop with a gigantic offer of sweets and pastries. Lidingö. Stikki Nikki: Among the best ice cream shops I’ve visited in my life (which are many!). Gigantic portions. Södermalm/ city center/ … Karla Café: a bit pricey with a slightly upper class feeling, but calm, classy and nice. Östermalm. Fotografiska: […]

Fika redommendations vol. 2

I promised to continue my list of food and fika places in Stockholm. So here we go. Vurma: two branches with extremely good food, smaller meals and cake/ pastries. Colorful, exotic style. Very friendly staff at Birger Jarlsgatan, very cozy atmosphere near Vasaparken. Absolutely recommendable! Östermalm/ Vasastan. Louie Louie: fika and smaller food in American […]

Fika recommendations vol. 1

I’m traveling back, I’m not happy about it but instead of writing a lot about dorky feelings, I’ll do something useful and document the fika and food places I’ve visited in Stockholm during the last months. Café String: Good pastries and a great and reasonable brunch buffet on weekends. The place’s style is a combination […]

The Stockholm syndrome

I discovered an effect that is very common among people here and I wanna call it the Stockholm syndrome. People suffering from it tend to revolve around themselves in a certain way I’ll try to explain. It’s common to meet people that grew up here, never lived anywhere else and don’t plan to do so […]