A Trip to the Arctic Circle Day 4
Day 4 (23 Dec 2006) Happaranda – Kiruna
7.20 a.m. on a bus along E4 road towards Sundsvill.
Sweden has a good traffic sign system , and a bus driver switched to low frontlight when there is a car from the opposite direction, and switched to low frontlight when there is no car.
7.40 a.m. the country was still in the dark. On the bus, I sat on the upper storey, first row. I knew it’s not safe but I didn’t care every second happens only once.
I saw , animal (elk/moose) signs, along the road. Only few cars passed us in every 10 mins, and only one car in front of us, and now we left it behind. I was sleepy again I should have slept for a while but I didn’t want to miss anything.
It’s 7.57 a.m. we still in the dark.
9.20 a.m. a bus to Kiruna arrived, then we went along E10 road towards Kiruna. We could see sunlight now and it revealed a land covered by snow.
11.15 a.m. now I felt I had had lost in space. The world was still moving under my feet, things were moving around me, but I just sat here and felt like I’d have been in this moment forever, sitting peacefully at one corner on the bus, enjoying a landscape in the countryside, covered by snow and pine, in short moment, just closing my eyes and listening to sweet music "you’re beautiful" from James Blunt, while the bus was running along the winding road. After working hard, we should enjoy this kind of life some time.
I fell asleep when we were closed to Kiruna. The bus stopped at the bus station at 1.30 p.m. We got bad news when we arrived, the mine trip had been cancelled b’coz there were not enough members to start the trip. Only 9 students from 10 adults. Then we checked news & activities at the tourist info center. We always found useful information from it. In our journey we could trust info from it. Then we checked in at Yellow House. We had a tiny hazzle here about a number of persons. We booked rooms for 6 persons but we came in 5 persons, so the price that we needed to pay was for 6 not 5. An admin said we must have informed him for the change. He looked so annoyed when he met us. Unlike typical Swedes, they are quite nice (I should have noticed that I was signaled since we first arrived in Kiruna.) Anyway we’re sorry for that, honestly we felt that, and paid for 5 persons.
It’s already dark when we leave the hostel for the church. We’re still on the trip of visiting churches . I didn’t know why a member in our group kept looking for it in everywhere we had been to. But it’s nice tough just wondered. We also needed to buy food for today’s dinner and tomorrow’s meals. The whole city closed on Chirstmas’s Eve. But when we came back from the church every shop had already closed. So we walked, I believed, to the next city to find Coop. The total distance approximately more than 5 km. In a cold, dark, unfamiliar place and floor covered with snow, even the temperature was below zero but it could make you sweat. On the way back, we walked pass our place for 3 crossroads and four of us were already crazy, except the leader, obviously I and Simon. We seemed too much happy. I felt over tired, terribly starving, and totally lost control of myself. So what I was being now was I laughed at everything we did, and Simon sang a song "I believe I can die (fly). I believe I am dying now (can touch the sky.) A moment later, it’s snowing. When we backed, we knew that we just passed our place without any notice cuz we walked on another side and totally interested in taking photos.
Another exhausted, adventurous, exotic experience in the white city. We ate and regained energy. We played many card games: poker, blackjack, slave (in Chinese version) till 2 a.m. Then we said goodnight and we couldn’t forget about it. It’s our first Christmas’s Eve in Sweden.
Today expense: Hotel (2 nights) 320 SEK, food 89.9 SEK