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#MySweden: ‘The absence of sun may impact your mood in a funny way’

Yulya Solodovnik shares her best tips on how to spend a day in Stockholm. Photo: Private

Every week one of The Local's readers takes over our Instagram account. Today Yulya Solodovnik from the Ukraine shows us her part of Stockholm.

How old are you and what do you normally spend your days doing?

I am 25 and usually I spend my days working. I also try to allocate some time to learn Swedish, do yoga and cook new recipes during the weekdays, while on the weekends I explore the city of Stockholm and meet up with friends.

When and why did you move to your city?

I moved to Stockholm three months ago in order to complete my internship at a company called Plantagon. They are developing and operating sustainable urban farms in Sweden and worldwide. Currently I am helping them to attract investors and with work at Stockholm City Farm.

What do you love the most about your city?

One thing about Stockholm that really stands out and fascinates me is the city's infrastructure. It is a city that prioritizes the comfort of the citizens and has a high quality of services. It's comfortable for anyone: for people with disabilities, for parents with children and for tourists who don't know Swedish – the municipality considers the needs of various stakeholders who could be potential users of the city, which shapes their urban planning strategies.

What annoys you the most about your city?

Definitely the so called 'grey season', which mainly occurs in the autumn and winter. It means that there is no sunlight during the day and all you can see outside are the grey clouds. In winter in Sweden the daylight is short, usually the sunrise is at 8.30am and the sunset is before 3pm. With this timing, the absence of sun may impact your mood in a funny way – quite annoying.

How should I spend a day in your city?

You could start a day with fika at some cozy cafe in a hipster area of Södermalm aka Söder. Some of my recent favorites are Bröd & Salt (local Stockholm's bakery) at Gamla Stan and Fåtöljen next to Slussen subway station. If it's a sunny day, you could also go up to the Katarina Elevator next to the Gondolen restaurant. This place shows a spectacular view over Stockholm's city centre.

I would suggest to walk around the Old Town and later check out one of the 16 free museums in Stockholm. I especially enjoy the souvenir shop at Moderna Museet, even more than the museum itself. The other great places to stick around if you are a book/magazine lover are a Papercut shop and the Stockholm Public Library.

What's a fun fact not everyone knows about your city?

There is an interesting piece of art at Skeppsbron 44 in the old town of Stockholm, Gamla Stan. If you peek above the door, you'll see a stone face of a desperate crying man, and below his face you'll see a… vagina. The house was built in 20th century. According to the legend, the wife of the owner of the building cheated on him with one of his employees. In revenge, he made a sculpture of his face with tears over vagina of his wife. Moreover, on rainy days, the rain water drops as tears from his face, to show how much this act devastated him.

Photo: Yulya Solodovnik

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