Labour Day

Baby seat in the mens toilet at IKEA, Sydney

Baby seat in the mens toilet at IKEA, Sydney

“That is SUCH a Swedish thing to do”, Grant commented when I returned from the men’s toilet at IKEA.

Although I’m sure you can otherwise get arrested for taking photographs in men’s toilets, my intention was honourable.

I was impressed with the “baby seat” located in the cubicle so that when a father needs to attend to nature, he has somewhere to place the baby.

The Swedes are known for their gender equity, and I guess this is just another sign of it.

It was one of those early afternoon decisions to go to IKEA. I was hanging out at home with nothing much planned. And so I rang Graeme and Grant asking if they wanted to make a trip to our favourite shopping centre.

While Graeme looked at CDs. Grant and I ate meatballs.

The wait for our meal though was a little more than we expected. It was if half of Sydney had the same early afternoon realisation that it would be fun to go to IKEA and fun to go to the cafe. I estimate we were in the queue for fifteen minutes.

As we wandered around IKEA we noted that for all its Swedishness, there are some aspects of Swedish culture they don’t include. For example, the muzak is never Swedish. And for all of the prints of exotic locations around the world you can buy, there’s not one of Stockholm.

OK, so maybe the demand for a print of the archipelago may not be all that great in Sweden, and half of the rest of the world may have little idea that Stockholm even has an archipelago, I can tell you there’s three little ducks here in Sydney who would love a print of Stockholm for their wall.

I did the things I had to do – buy some glasses for work, and some light globes – and also picked up some lovely coat-hangers and then we caught the train back.

Plans for the night? Swedish homework and clothes-washing.

As much as I love my work, I also love a public holiday, and it’s been great having another day off.

  1. they play ABBA a lot in IKEA. They should have Swedish prints. And those Dalarna horses.

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