The meatballs at Ikea today were much improved on the last time I visited their only Sydney store at Rhodes.
Last time, they were a little dried out, they were nowhere near as flavoursome as the ones I enjoyed last year in Sweden, and there wasn’t enough of either lingonberries or the rather curious brown sauce that usually accompanies them.
Also, learning from a Swedish woman in class who said, “I always ask for more lingonberries”, I did the same and was pleasantly surprised at how good it tasted. Not quite as good as the meatballs I enjoyed last year in Skansen, but pretty good nonetheless.
Accompanying the meal was some lingonberry softdrink which, to be honest, wasn’t all that dissimilar from creaming soda.
From time to time throughout our classes, we’ve been asked to bring some food to “celebrate” the end of one section and the commencement of another.
Marabou chocolate, crackerbread, Glogg and a host of other examples of typical Swedish food have been brought along by members of the class.
So Grant and I were there with the intention of finding something interesting and “typically Swedish” to take along.
I’ll leave it up to Graeme to describe our purchases…
Grant got some kind of cake-sweet that looked like it came from a nuclear waste facility. And James got some caviar in a tube and some Swedish cracker biscuits. And of course they both got IKEA bags because they look so camp! They also got some non-alcoholic Swedish pear cider. James plans to add a little vodka to his to ‘cure’ it of it’s non-alcoholic status!
When we weren’t eating, we were looking around the store at the various bits and pieces they sell.
At one point I noticed a young girl, maybe three or four years old, who was walking around saying the prices out loud, “practising her numbers” so to speak. It was then I realised I was doing something not all that dissimilar in that I was walking around saying the Swedish words out loud.
“Some of the names for furniture are very strange”, I observed to Grant at one point. Ordinary every day words like “kvart” (“quarter”) have been applied to items of furniture for no apparent reason. I wonder if it’s the same in Ikea shops in Sweden, or do the names there differ?
Another highlight, was the decision to take a photograph of Grant and Graeme as if they were in Stockholm against the backdrop of a large poster in the store. It’s not disimilar, don’t you think, to the header page for this blog?
For all the store’s Swedishness, we were a little disappointed they didn’t play Swedish music on the public address system – Roxette and ABBA are too easy – or that their large art works of cities of the world include every other city except Stockholm.
Grant and Graeme are heading off to Stockholm in July. No doubt, we’ll be able to follow their travels via their respective blogs.
PS. This is post #987, which means that sometime in the next fortnight I’ll be “celebrating 1000 posts”. That’s a lot of words to say so little… don’t you think?