And so did I arrived. One probably should not begin sentence with "and" or "so" but let it be for a moment and focus on more important things - my experience with accommodation.
Probably as any other average Pole I have this beautiful image of Sweden as an Arcady, the land of milk and honey and so on. And my friend who previously been on her exchange in Finland has been constantly spinning a tale about her luxury accommodation with a perfect view, so I thought well ... why it should be any different in Sweden. In other words I have been expecting almost a castle. And the price of accommodation reassure me in that belief.
It started nicely - with a cute small house in the middle of the forest with the promising name of the home of the sun. Now when I think about it - it was like an experience of honey moon phase.
But the excitement very soon give way to frustration and disappointment. It was not the castle I have expected. In fact, it was in no way any better than in Poland. So, the only difference was the price. Don't get me wrong - it is not bad neither. It is just a standard student housing - with bed and desk consisting most of the room equipment.
But the title is about surprises, right? So, what was so unexpected that I got shocked? Let's start with neutral ones and then I will tell you about why I got frustrated at the beginning. So, the first thing, that caught my attention was lack of the kitchen or kitchenette as the one should be in every room as stated in tenant deal. But, in room was exactly that what you can see and the second door led to bathroom. What left is a corridor - but there was only big white wardrobe. Ok, I will have a space but what about making tea? Should I really go to the common kitchen just for that? With this thoughts of resignation I opened my new wardrobe and.... That's when I was first surprised. In this cupboard I did not found the shelf - I found kitchenette. Astonished as I was, I opened the second cupboard. Surprise, surprise... it was a fridge. And right next to it a cupboard full of kitchen equipment. Not, so bad after all right?
(BTW Here I would like to say thank you to previous owners of the room - the kitchen equipment, as well as the bedding and cleaning staff I found is not a part of the normal equipment. It was left for me by the Korean and Spanish guys together with this nice postcard full of useful advice. It truly made my day and almost get rid off all of frustration. Thanks).
The next surprise awaited me in the bathroom (I have learned it is normal in many countries, but not for me), there was no shower base in the bathroom! Just the floor and even not tiles but linoleum. I was scared it will be destroyed by water for the first couple of days (fortunately, it did not but I am still not sure about this technical solution).
OK, so the water is dripping on the floor - is it enough reason to get frustrated? Of course not! And neither is the electric socket right over a window (I will be really grateful for someone who will tell me what is the reason to put a socket in such a ridiculous place) and the electricity timer (yes, when it comes to kitchen or microwave to have to put on the timer on.... and it is usually for 30 minutes .... and after that time the power will be cut off - annoying if you cooking, especially when you forget to put the timer on). So, what was the reason for my true annoyance? If you are still reading it, I bet you want to know :D Ok, I will tell you.
It was not a room itself but the common facilities. It was common kitchens that are closed between 6 am. and 21 pm. because of what I burned my pizza and have to call emergency service to turn the oven off. It was because of laundry room when I had to really start planing my washing as I had to book laundry session in advance and only 8 time per room (my room was shared so 4 sessions per person). It was because of electronic system that make you able to enter the laundry room only on your time and the kitchen (and only your kitchen) only with a key (so good advice - do not forget your key in the kitchen because then you will have to knock on your neighbors doors asking to let you back in). It was because the timers get broken really often and the management was not very quick to repair it, so sometimes you have to live 2 days using only your small room kitchenette (BTW they do not check it regularly so you have to report if it is broken). It was because sink was close to cables and one careless move cut off the power in your entire room and you were made to call support service again. It was because most of information as well as laundry booking system was in Swedish. And most of all, it was because of rats. Yes, we had rats in garbage disposals and living under kitchen floor. And it took many angry emails to made the landlord finally take action against them.
For me it was a lot to digest and deal with. But again, after some time, one grows accustomed to the new circumstances and develops routines and solutions. I have learned to see good sides one again. Oh, I haven't told you about the biggest positive surprise - my roommate came to Sweden only for 5 weeks internship. And on the one hand I really missed her (she was such a vivid and positively humored girl! Thanks for time spend together), but on the other I had a double room for myself for the half of the price! Big plus, right? And I cannot forget about my cute animal neighbours (I have not met any of my human neighbors, what was by the way another big shock for me as I am used to say HI! to everyone on the corridor. But this housing seemed deserted! Weird!). I know I have posted them before but they are so cute I can not stop myself.
So, in the end I have actually learned to love this place. After all, I have spend so many unforgettable moments here such as every Tuesday beerpong tradition, common diners or just long talks over a cup of tea. Thanks to everyone who shared them with me. So, now when it is time to go I actually do not feel like leaving and I am sure I will really miss this place. But it is time for me to pass the torch on and to leave my own postcard and gifts for future owners to continue tradition. I hope you will adopt to this place the same way I did (OK, maybe not exactly the same but in your own special way). So, I am now waiting for your stories to come on as I am really curios to compare experience. Nice stay to all of you!