Skansen outdoor museum.  Stockholm, Sweden


by Eve Andersson and Philip Greenspun
View from the steamboat Prins Carl Philip in Stockholm's harbor
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from Eve

A street for pedestrians in central Stockholm with an anti-violence gun statue It's hard to believe that the peaceful people of Sweden descended from the Vikings. Swedes have one of the highest standards of living and life expectancies in the world. They have a 99% literacy rate and I read somewhere that they buy the most books per capita of any country in the world.

Cows and Church.  Tingstade (northern Gotland). The country is the third-largest in western Europe, with an area of 173,732 square miles (449,964 square km), a little larger than California and 3.5 times the size of New York State. But the population is quite small: 8,857,000 residents (1995 est.), one quarter that of California's. More than half of the land is covered with forests.

The northern two thirds of the country (Norrland) is mountainous. The south (Svealand and Götaland) is flat and contains most of the population.

It's a lovely place to visit, even if you don't speak Swedish (most Swedes are fluent in English). Come to see the beautiful cities, nature, water, the midnight sun (in the northern parts), and, of course, the smiling, friendly people.

from Philip

What I found most interesting about Sweden was the extent to which people get along. It is the opposite of California (I wrote a piece on social friction in California) in this respect. People agree on enough that public places aren't plastered with signs telling folks not to do various things.
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