and in the morning we look like penguins

There is a lot of talk about light in Sweden these days. Or the lack of it to be more specific. A colleague interested in photography explained how cold the Swedish winter light is, how blue it is and how it reflects on our pale Swedish bodies and veins. Its difficult to explain how gray and white the Swedish January landscape is; the sky and ground melt together, snow hang from the roofs, icy roads fill the city and in the morning we look like penguins when we try and maneuver the streets without falling. Some fail and hit the ground with a silent thump, the white winter eating everything; there is no smell except for the steaming petrol fumes from struggling cars, no sound except for that of rubber souls hitting cold snow, of small stones scratching against wet floors when we walk indoors.

They call them the ox months, the time between Christmas and Easter when there is no holidays, only cold weather and darkness. No wonder we struggle to find energy and light. So we sit indoors in well lit offices, talking about the blue light, looking at our pale arms while another travel advertisement flash past us on line, cruelly informing us that this white existence is only reality for a small portion of the world.


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