Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Tuesday 24/07/07

On Monday I finish reading The Rules of Attraction and now I’m ready to move on to American Psycho, which is a bit like a huge Cardigans fan listening to Lovefool – maybe their best known work, but certainly not the one I like the most. So we’ll see how that goes.

Anyway, this week I have been thinking about going on holidays / traveling. I don’t like traveling one bit. Traveling gets me out my routine and my comfort zone and we certainly don’t want that. When I go to a new place for the first time (let’s say for a week) I go through the following sequence:

Stage 1: Inevitably I dislike it for the first few days. I don’t know where to buy cans of tuna, I don’t know where they sell newspapers, I don’t know how to get around or how anything works. This stage sucks and I want to go back home and sit on my sofa.

Stage 2: Mid-week things are slightly better. I have developed a pattern that I feel comfortable with, I do the same things every day and I’m happy with that. I still don’t know how to get anywhere though because I have no sense of orientation, but that’s OK.

Stage 3: By the end of the holiday I don’t want to leave. I’ve got used to it and I don’t want to change again (even if it means going back home).

This enviable personality disorder means that I’ve only been to 3 countries in my life (apart from the ones I’ve lived in which are Greece and England) and I don’t feel like I want to go anywhere else.

In any case, I’m saying all this because I’m now planning at trip in November as I mentioned before. Initially I wanted to go traveling around the Highlands of Scotland in a camper van, but then I thought, where is it even more bloody freezing and there are even fewer things to do? In the Arctic Circle.

The holiday that I want ideally has:

- Snow huskies and a sleigh
- Possibly reindeer. Or is the Arctic Circle too cold for reindeer? Who knows.
- More snow than you can shake a stick at
- Lots of ice and not just in my drink
- Big coats (with fur hoods)
- Frostbite
- Hot chocolates and marshmallows
- An open fire
- Saunas (but not like the one next to Barcode in Vauxhall)

Unfortunately it turns out that this kind of holiday is a tad too expensive (around £850 per person for 5 days) and as I’m planning to pay for Scott as well (as a present for having gone out with him for 2 years – I hate the word anniversary), I really don’t want to fork out all that money. He’s not that fucking great, right?

So the next best thing that I could come up with is a city break in Reykjavik or Oslo or Stockholm. They’re cold, right? And slightly less expensive. But apart from that I don’t know much else.

This is where you come in. Has anyone who reads this been to any of these 3 cities? And which one fits what I want most? What do we know about the reindeer population there?

I guess I’ll have to hope that people have visited, because I don’t get many hits from people who live in those places. Google Analytics tells me that Oslo is the 117th most popular location for reading this blog and Stockholm comes in at 211. Nobody from Reykjavik has logged on yet, but I suppose those guys are preoccupied with shoveling snow from their drives or something. Fair play to them.

If you can help with your amazing Scandinavian insight, please leave a comment or drop us a line at london.preppy@gmail.com innit.

I have 1 song by Bad Religion and I have played it 4 times
I have 3 songs by Badly Drawn Boy and I’ve played them 22 times
I have 1 songs by Bananarama and I’ve played it 33 times


nylon said...

Stockholm is one of the most beautiful cities on earth, definitely go there. Then again, I'm a big fan of Scandinavian cities and scenery and I find Oslo and Copenhagen very attractive too. The Norwegians are much friendlier than the Swedes, but the Swedes and the Danes are very good looking. Iceland is not as nice as its bigger cousins - I think.

Matt said...

OK, i've only vaguely been to a couple of these cities, but I will add my opinion anyway! I don't really go to cold places, so not sure how qualified I am to recommend.

Reykjavik: I've actually only been to the airport on a refuelling stop to the US...it is kind of like how I would imagine landing on the moon! Very flat with little crater type things, lots of little rocks and stones and no grass! However, I believe the city and the sights are amazing it has an outdoor natural hot spa in the middle of the city, lots of geysers to see and the nightlife is supposed to be pretty spectacular too.

Oslo: never been nor heard much about it, which suggests it may not be that exciting. Don't even know any interesting Norwegians.

Stockholm: some people I know that have been say it is great, but then again I haven't heard much about it. On the other hand, I guess if you like blonde viking types it could be interesting!

Copenhagen: Been many years ago, I always thing it should be a pretty exciting city. The Danes, apart from being more Viking types, seem to be pretty cosmopolitan. Not sure what exciting things there are to see.

Other ideas: How about Moscow or St Petersburgh...does the budget stretch here? Not been but again heard many good things and it will be cold. If the budget doesn't stretch that far, how about Estonia?

Time to make a poll of your shortlist!

idrinkatwork said...

I travelled all around Norway when I was 12 or something like that, I think you should go there! I saw a couple of reindeers and touched them too. But go to Bergen instead of Oslo, such a better city. Or Tromso. I think they are even colder than Oslo, and that's where the band Royksopp comes from (Tromso)..

(EDIT: shit i've been trying to post this comment for ages but my computer doesn't allow me to, maybe destiny is telling me something.. maybe god doesn't like oslo and prefers stockholm.. who knows..)


Alex said...

I recommend Reykjavik. It's not too far away, it's relatively cheap compared to other places like Switzerland/Aspen, it has plenty of snow, and you can bathe in the geysers there. They also speak english well I think though i'm not certain.

Alex said...

I recommend Reykjavik. It's not too far away, it's relatively cheap compared to other places like Switzerland/Aspen, it has plenty of snow, and you can bathe in the geysers there. They also speak english well I think though i'm not certain.

Joe said...

I have been to Stockholm, Oslo, and Copenhagen and my favorite is Stockholm. Absolutely brilliant - it is set up on a few islands set in the most beautiful glacier water one has ever seen - perfectly clean and dark blue. No pollution, crisp air, and friendly people. While there, you can take all sorts of boat trips to see fjords, fishing villages, etc. where there is bound to be your requested snow and reindeer.
Copenhagen (I have also been to a smaller city outside of Copenhagen named Roskilde - the ancient Viking capital of Denmark) and it, too, is beautiful - especially the people. Everyone is blonde, blue eyed, mannerly, etc. Stockholm wins, in my opinion, over Copenhagen because of the water.
Oslo was my least favorite - it has a WW 2 rebuilt vibe - lots of low, anonymous brick buildings and City Hall is one of the ugliest buildings in the world (really- the citizens actually take pride in how awful it is). The good thing about Oslo is its proximity to nature (snow, reindeer, etc.)
The drawback to all 3 is the expense.

Joe said...

I have been to Stockholm, Copenhagen, and Oslo and my favorite is Stockholm. It is set on a few different islands in the most beautiful glacial water - dark blue and crisply clean. Boat rides to see fjords, fishing villages, etc. are common so you can easily get to see the snow/reindeer/nature you desire.
Copenhagen (and a smaller city, Roskilde, the ancient Viking capital) is also beautiful - especially the gorgeous blonde residents - but I like Stockholm better because of the water.
My least favorite was Oslo - it has a WW2 rebuilt vibe - lots of low, anonymous, brick buildings. As a matter of fact, City Hall is considered one the of the ugliest buildings in the world and the citizens take a unique pride in that.

tom said...

don' bother with iceland - it's VERY expensive and unless you're a fan of that perticular landscape style it has nothing to do.

Look at Finland - you should be able to get cheep flights there then take a train north and you'll be inside the arctic circle = reindeer, snow, sauna's - everything you'd expect. It's in Finnish Lapland that all the "santa" villages are - the recreated villages where kids can go for a short vacation and get to meet the real santa so the whole reagion is geared up for exactly the kind of trip you want to take.

Do a search for "cantabury travel"- they're the biggest "santa" organisers and they do do adult trips to the region.

see - i'm pwitty, funny AND full of practical advice :-p

Tim in Italy said...

What a great blog! I wandered over on Matty urging over at DTB. I'm looking forward to squirreling through past posts over the week-end.

I thought "Rules of Attraction" was so-so and preferred the movie, if only because of Ian Somerhalder spending quality time with his underwear. I wondered if you had read "Glamorama"? I think it's by far his best book and liked it much better than "American Psycho".

London Preppy said...

tim in italy: I have indeed read Glamorama too - it's my favourite book of all time. To fully appreciate my Bret Easton Ellis obsession, look at the tattoo I got a couple of weeks back :-)