San Francisco fantasies

Vibrant new year at the Palace of Fine Arts and California Academy of Sciences.


Elm City cheer

Balmy family Christmas in New Haven, Connecticut.

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.

Boo views

Long weekend in Stockholm-archipelago town Saltsjö-Boo with adventurous guests from San Francisco and Geneva. Meeting AirBnB host Tomas was a delightful bonus—easy to see why he loves it here.

Inner islands

July day trips among the more populated local reaches of the Stockholm archipelago on Fjäderholmarna and Värmdö.

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.

Hills still alive

After a productive week in Lausanne, we joined friends from London and Strasbourg for the end of the winter season in Ehrwald, Austria.

Our crew of twenty made the most of the remaining snow on Austria’s Ehrwalder Alm, and across the German border on Zugspitze Glacier.

With snowy days behind us, we wrapped up our trip with a loop through Reutte to walk the record-setting Highline 179 suspension footbridge, connecting Fort Claudia to the ruins of 12th-century Ehrenberg Castle.

Many thanks to the Dutch team at Chalet Erlifeld for hosting our holiday, and to Kara Chanasyk for keeping Franklin fed & befriended back home in Stockholm!

Asterisked (*) photos credit: James Ruthven