Skansen and Squirrels

Wow, over a week since my last post.  Guess I’ve been busy.  This is a good thing, right?  Well, suppose I should fill you dear readers in.  What have I been doing?  Several trips to Stockholm, for one.  I had a class trip to Skansen this last week.  It’s an open air museum in Stockholm, built and maintained to give a glimpse into the Swedish folksphere.  That is, it’s a museum of traditional Swedishness.  As with all history, it’s a bit of a creation.  We see what Skansen chooses to show.  That said, I was surprised at the large portion of the museum that had been dedicated to Sami culture.  Unlike the highly idealized representation of Native American cultures in the States, the Skansen museum described consequences of modernization, as well as the Sami culture’s adaptation to the modern age.  The way they are presented seemed much more honest than what we tend to see regarding indigenous peoples in the States.  In the States we tend to get surprised when we meet someone of native descent who’s turned to gambling and alcohol because they betray the myth we have created around them.  Of course, I’m being overly simplistic.  But the representation at Skansen surprised me — more so than any of the depictions of the ‘Swedish’ part of the museum, which was, to be honest, rather boring.  I spent most of my time chasing around the squirrels, which seemed much happier to be there in Skansen than did the animals in the zoo section.  Zoos are a bit twisted, aren’t they?  But I digress, I was talking about squirrels.  They are so gosh darned adorable.  And, because I’ve been on a comparison kick, way better than the squirrels back home.  Way better.

And now I offer proof, plus some other stuff:

As for what else I’ve been doing, well, putzing around.  Went Geocaching somewhere along the way in the past few days to no success.  Been writing, playing ukulele.  So, really, the usual.  Oh, and I’ve got an essay due on Monday.  Just a one to two pager on my impressions of Swedishness as presented in Skansen.  What is included and what is left out.  Suppose you’ve been my test audience on the subject.  Also suppose I should turn my observations a bit more academic, less focused on squirrels.  Although, those squirrels were pretty durned Swedish.  Ran away when I got close and didn’t say much.  Zing!

Listening to: Swept Inside, Future Islands


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