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Arrival in Sweden and the First Few Days 2006 August 29

Posted by @jennyjenjen in Helpful Hints, Language, Transportation, Travel.

After three flights and more than a day and a half without sleep, I arrived at Arlanda Airport just north of Stockholm at about 2:00 pm. I had no problems with getting my luggage, although to fly from Manchester to Arlanda I had to check my carry-on that I had with me from Denver to Chicago and Chicago to Manchester. My luggage came out near the beginning, so I was all ready to go right away. After freshening up in the restroom quickly, I headed out to catch the bus to Uppsala. I actually missed the first one that was there (and the driver wasn’t going to stop for me, oh well), but waiting an extra 15-20 minutes was no hassle after having traveled over 14 hours.

Right off the bat, I was speaking plenty of Swedish. On the bus ride to Uppsala, I met one of the people who was coordinating the international student activities, a student who was an exchange student himself in the States. He told me how to get to the offices I needed to get to once I arrived, but it ended up being unnecessary as I needed to hail a taxi to help me with all the bags I had once I got there (later, I found that one of my friends coming to Uppsala had brought more than I had, and what I had was virtually nothing compared to his luggage!).

After getting to the international office I quickly found out that it was closed. (Ugh! The hours discussed in the booklet were for the following week, and since I’d arrived early, didn’t apply to me.) I left my luggage with a receptionist next door and headed to the Studentstaden office to get my key. If I were to do it over again, I probably would have been better at reading my acceptance packet (there are so many different resources for telling one how to get along when you arrive, but the best instructions to follow are the ones that come in the acceptance packet!). I should have left my luggage at Västgöta Nation while I went to Dragarbrunnsgatan 42 (the Studentstaden office) to get my key, then check into the international office.

After I fetched my key at the Studentstaden office, I went back to the receptionist’s, got my luggage, and decided that the long wait for the international office contact was too long and got help with going to Flogsta by bus. (I should’ve stayed, because then I would’ve gotten a free SIM card for my phone, instead of purchasing one like I did the next day!) Luckily, both at the international office and when I got to Flogsta, there were nice guys who helped me with all the luggage. I was greeted by a girl in the corridor, Sara, who offered me some dinner. After that, all I did was sleep!

My room in Uppsala

The next day I went into town and found an American newspaper and called my father from a payphone. He had just been trying to get ahold of me and was on the phone with the international office just at that time; how eerie, since I had been going around town and going about my own business the entire day and had just then decided to call him. It was pretty early in the morning in Colorado then, too. But we talked for a little while, which was nice, and I later went to go sit by the river and learn how to load the cell phone I’d just gotten with minutes. I wish I’d known that the international office had free phone numbers and SIM cards with a few free credits, but that’s okay; perhaps I’ll use it towards the end of my stay.

I ended the second day with even more sleep, but it felt nice. It only took me two days to get over the jet lag for that reason, so I would recommend anyone else to try and get over the jet lag as soon as possible!



1. Zach Malmgren - 2006 September 21

Sleep is always good. Cell phones and SIM cards AUGH… I hate dealing with that crap!

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