27 July 2006

Swedish people do it the other way around...

After being here for a while, we’ve started noticing that some things are strangely opposite from what we’re used to in Belgium. For example: front doors open to the outside, which has caused a lot of frustration, when we try to get out. We’re always pulling the door, wondering if it’s still locked! Until we remember that it’s the other way around.
Another example: you have to put keys upside down in the lock, with the patterned part upward. Same with your visa or MasterCard: magnetic strip upward.

We haven’t had much time to visit anything this weekend, since David had to work most of the time. We did go to a barbecue, organised by one of the local guys of the Swedish company where David is working. People tend to drink a lot here. Disgusting things like Danish schnapps, which smells and tastes like perfume, and Swedish vodka (you could as well be drinking disinfecting alcohol). They can’t bare it though, at the end of the joyful event, they were all as drunk as a beaver, while we only had three or four shots. Some of them didn’t even manage to speak English properly anymore.

So as you can see, expatriate life hasn’t been so lonely up until now. We both have a great deal of work, and at the company where David is working, his local colleagues are very open and used to working with ‘strangers’. Next to us and Olivier, there are also two Polish guys (who, strangely enough, seem to speak English with an Italian accent).