Yesterday night, I arrived home from spending a week and a half in Åre! The week was extremely fun and exhausting at the same time (we skied so much), and I’m happy to say I have some great memories from it.
This post is going to be about what I did before the Rotary camp started. I went to Åre 4 days early because my ‘roomie’ Jessie lives in the Åre community, so I thought why not go early to spend more time with her since I haven’t seen her in like 7 months. I left Gällivare on Wednesday at 9am and arrived to her in Järpen around 11.30pm. I already posted a deal about this travel day but it was all in Swedish so half of the people reading it probably didn’t understand. But I’ll sum it up for you.. It was a long day but it was worth it in the end, and it wasn’t as horrible as I thought a 11 hour bus ride could be.
Thursday morning, I made Jessie late for her class, actually made her miss it, I’d apologize but I don’t think she minded too much. To start the day we walked to Jessie’s school, about a 20 minute walk, and met up with her first host sister for a little fika. Then we kind of just hung around her school for a little and grabbed lunch there. After lunch we walked backed to her house, took a nap, and then took the bus to Åre so I could do a little exploring.
We just walked around Åre and did a little bit of shopping for our Rotary blazers. We also took this train, which is actually a ski lift too. It’s nice because you don’t need skis to go on it so you are able to go to the restaurant at the top of the lift, so we took it up to look around up there too. We popped into the after ski but only stayed long enough to snap some pictures.
It was really weird to walk around there because they had no snow when I arrived.. A little bit of a drastic change one day walking with snow that is almost to your waist then the next day being somewhere where there is none. It honestly felt weird to walk on solid ground again.
While we were in Åre we went to Holiday Club, which is this hotel with this awesome pool and Sauna World. We got in for free because Jessie’s host mom works there, so we spend a good few hours there relaxing. The Sauna World was pretty amazing they had about 10 saunas of all different temperatures and a steam sauna which was my favorite. They also had an Arctic Sauna which was at maybe -18C.. That one kind of scared me. We ate some ice cream there too which is obviously worth mentioning. I ate mint chocolate chip, dulce du leche and daim incase you were wondering and yes we got three scoops cause were fatties. I don’t have any pictures from inside the pool & sauna because neither my phone or camera is waterproof so it was too much of a hassle. It was really nice although, as you can maybe imagine.
When we were satisfied with our time in the Holiday Club we decided to eat out somewhere. We chose this restaurant called Broken, because Jessie’s host mom recommended it. Let’s just say that this dinner was one of the most interesting dinners I’ve ever had. I don’t think I’ve laughed so much in such a long time. We just wanted a cozy little dinner, but this old man came up to us and started talking to us. When he found out we were ‘poor exchange students’ he bought our dinner without telling us!
On Friday I went to school with Jessie for her English class in the morning, then we ate lunch at the school again and went back to chill at Jessie’s for the afternoon. She made me dinner and it was sooo good, someone wife Jessie cause she can cook. Anyways, we planned on going night skiing with her Swedish friend, Albin, but we took the bus there and the night skiing wasn’t open. (btw walking 10 minutes to the bus with all your skiing stuff isn’t so much fun). We decided to just do something in Åre since it was Friday night and we had nothing else to do. We ended up getting about 2 short runs in because we took the train up and skied back down to it. It was pitch black because the slopes there had no lights so it was a little bit difficult to ski. Then we went to ICA and bought some ice cream, and eventually took the bus back to Jessie’s.
Saturday we got a real ski day in. The weather started out cloudy, then we got a short amount of sunshine, and then ended the ski day in a blizzard. I’m not complaining though because this was the only day we had sunshine out of the whole entire trip. Unfortunately, this day was quite windy, so they shut most of the lifts, and we ended up taking the same lift over and over again. Of course, they shut the lift where we had our stuff too. We skied down to that lift to meet Albin, but when we were at the bottom we discovered it was closed and he said to meet him at the next lift over. We ended up having to walk 15 minutes uphill in our ski boots, carrying our skis to the next lift. Åre is big enough though that this one lift still gave us a few different slopes to ski on so we were just on the same maybe 7 runs the whole day. After skiing we went back to Jessie’s house and she made me a super awesome dinner again, then we packed up our stuff because we would move to the hotel to stay for the camp Sunday morning.
So that was my first 4 days in Åre spent with Jessie! It was so much fun to see her again, it’s actually quite weird that you can be best friends with someone only meeting them one time before, but we do talk about our problems to each other almost everyday on facebook! It was also cool to meet her friends and of course go skiing!
I am so thankful that I have the opportunity to go skiing whenever I want in my host town, but sorry Dundret, you do not compare to the skiing in Åre! The mountains in Åre are so much taller than what I’m used to skiing on so it was a great challenge and definitely improved my skiing, at least I think it did! Overall, I am in love with Åre, it is such a cozy little ski town. Like Jessie told me it’s a small town that feels a lot bigger than it actually is. Wherever I live in the future must be somewhere in the mountains, I am absolutely astounded by them!
The next post will hopefully be the rest of my trip to Åre! I am also a little bit behind on my posts, so I still think I have some pictures from the LKAB mine and what I did over our ‘sportlov’ school break. I think I caught a little cold so I suppose I will have some time to edit pictures and so on 🙂