London dry

Spirit blending class at the Ginstitute, Portobello Road, London

…and a well-lit journey home via Oxford Circus.

London - 5

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Glimpse of Lisbon

Whetting our appetites with douro, percebes and pasteis during a Lisbon work weekend (cut even shorter by flight delays); hope to see more of Portugal soon.

Antique abundance

Touring the 18th-century home and recreated gardens of Carl Linnaeus, father of modern taxonomy, in Uppsala, Sweden. Thanks to gracious guests Veronica and Dieter Söll for inspiring a beautiful journey.

Artful island

Midsommarhelgen voyage on the M/S Enköping to Artipelag, Björn Jakobson’s island-museum on Värmdö in the Stockholm archipelago.

Top photo: Stilla rörelse (Maria Miesenberger)

Dreamy Dalarna

Weekend in the Dalecarlian countryside for the Swedish Conference on Macromolecular Structure and Function, held for 20 years among the red barns and horse pastures of Tällberg on Lake Siljan.

Spring at Fish Creek

Fresh air between yard sale duties in Saratoga Springs, NY.

Første mai

Like most of Europe, we had a work holiday första maj (May 1st)—for Swedes, a time both to march in support of International Workers’ Day, and to recuperate from the annual Valborgsmässoafton (Walpurgis Night) bonfires. This year’s timing also made for a three-day weekend, so we took the opportunity to connect with our broader Scandinavian community, hopping the 50-minute flight to visit friends in Oslo, Norway.

After a long Scandinavian winter (like Stockholm, Oslo had snow just last week), the weekend brought a gratifying taste of spring. We joined many enthusiastic Norwegians in exploring the budding Østmarka wilderness on Oslo’s southeast border.

Norway’s Arbeiderpartiet, and a diverse crowd of related activists, turned out in force for the første mai demonstrations around Youngstorget—accompanied by Per Palle Storm’s labor monument Pioneren, as well as the looming Regjeringskvartalet, still marked by the 2011 Oslo Attacks. Nearby, Stinius Fredriksen’s 1950 memorial to FDR (top)—erected, in part, for his influential Look to Norway speech—looked on from a luminous forsythia bower.

Many thanks to our hosts, former San Francisco roommates Matt and Laura (plus effervescent daughter Evelis), for helping make even our quick trips instructive and nourishing.