Past – present – future

About ten years in Sweden and what will happen next

← Past

Have a look at this photo. It’s a special one:

This photo I took the morning of 23 April 2010, exactly ten years ago. It was the very first day of a new chapter in my life: Living in Sweden.

So today it’s my tenth Sweden anniversary. What a great life I’ve had all those years!

I’m especially grateful that I got to know Martine and Lasse right from the beginning. It was the balcony of their former house in Skellefteå where I took this photo from. Lasse and Martine not only gave me a room to stay for the first weeks but much more. They introduced me to many great people and showed me the surroundings, among others Skelleftehamn.

When I took these photos on 24 April 2010 I didn’t know that I would buy a house in Skelleftehamn only a month later and move there in summer 2010.


The month of April uses to be the month between winter and spring. It still may snow intensely but the snow won’t last. And so it is this year, too. The rivers are mostly open and only the lakes are still covered with old ice.

But this April is special. Although the weather is really fine I’m inside quite a lot. It’s not because of corona or work but …

… because I pack my things. I’m moving. I’ll leave Skelleftehamn after almost ten years! The removal van will come in three weeks and I have a lot of stuff. The 35 banana boxes on the photo are filled with books and I didn’t even start to pack my winter equipment. Down jackets, sleeping bags, pulka, skies, winter boots …

→ Future

I’m going to move 148 km south. Annika and I have bought a house in Obbola near Umeå, the largest town in Northern Sweden. In two weeks Annika and I will finally become sambor. Sambo (sam = together-, bo = to live) – is the common Swedish term for people in a relationship living together without being married. Oh, how I’m looking forward to live together with Annika after years of a weekend relationship with many car rides on the boring E4 between Skelleftehamn and Umeå.

I’m also looking forward to something else. The house is located by the Baltic Sea. It’s only sixty metres from our terrace to the shore and I’ll be able to see the sea from my “office room”. There will be no excuse why I shouldn’t take a ten minute kayak trip before breakfast, when the weather is nice.

It’s hard to make photos from the future. The photos below I made three weeks ago.

The photo I couldn’t take three weeks ago was of the mink strolling along the shore. Wrong lens …

12 comments to “Past – present – future”

  1. Annika 2020-04-24 05:37

    Ich grinse wieder im Kreis und freue mich einfach.
    Schön, dass Du nach Schweden gezogen bist.

  2. way-up-north 2020-04-24 07:20

    … und Du.

  3. Medi 2020-04-24 08:49

    Ich wünsche euch alles, alles Gute für die nächste, aufregende Zeit.

  4. Johanna 2020-04-24 09:25

    Stort grattis Olaf och Annika!
    Vad skönt. …en ( ett?) Hus med havsutsik! !!
    All meine guten Wünsche für euch !

  5. way-up-north 2020-04-24 09:26

    Danke, Medi!

    Tack, Johanna. (Det är förresten ett hus)

  6. Annika und Jonas 2020-04-24 18:17

    Wir freuen uns für euch! Gutes Durchhalten bis der Umzug geschafft ist und mögen euch die Bananenkisten nie ausgehen!

  7. Santosh 2020-04-25 11:03

    A beautifully written piece Olaf! And, a ‘double’ congratulations once again, on your official Sambo relationship, and your new home on the shores of the Baltic Sea! Wishing you both many more years of togetherness and happiness.
    I am personally grateful and privileged to have met you both in Skellefteå and become friends. Hopefully, we shall meet again! Take care and stay safe. Hugs 🤗

  8. Margrit Schneider 2020-04-25 18:49

    Dear O and A, I think of you each day and wish you all the best. Yours Ma

  9. Andreas 2020-04-28 14:20

    *Zehn* Jahre – meine Güte, wie die Zeit fliegt!

    Dir und Annika nur das Beste für die neue Lebensphase!

  10. Ulrich 2020-05-01 10:59


    nach Monaten bin ich wieder hier und sehe, dass ich dein Jubiläum verpasst habe. Schade, denn noch vor ein paar Wochen wollte ich wieder hier sein.
    Trotzdem gratuliere ich dir, Olaf, für diese 10 Jahre, die du in Schweden lebst und den Blog schreibst.

  11. Christiane 2020-05-01 14:44

    Congratulations to 10 years in Sweden and to moving together into such a nice house, and all the best for the future!

  12. way-up-north 2020-05-03 07:52

    Thank you all / Danke an alle.

    Annika and I will pack the last leftovers in my house right after breakfast. Then everything should be ready for the move on 15 May. Tomorrow we’ll get the keys of the house and immediately move in with mattresses, cloth for a week and laptop. And on Tuesday I’ll see the sea right after standing up :-)

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