So, as my readers will know by now, I just came back from Italy. This means that I had a lot of amazing “welcome back” meetings with friends and family.
This also meant a lot of repetitive Q&A’s, with questions such as:
- Did you eat a lot of pasta?
- Did you watch soccer?
And the most common one
- Did you miss Sweden a lot?
Obviously the last one calls for recollecting a lot of scattered thoughts and memories properly, but I have standardized one answer at this point:
No, I did not miss Sweden per say. I missed one thing in particular though, I missed the ‘Swedish Fika’.
Fika is a social interaction practiced in Sweden; it means having a break, most often a coffee break, with one’s colleagues, friends, date or family. We consider having a coffee-break an integral part of the culture.
But the fika is more than just the coffee; fika with someone can be like a “coffee date”, or just drinking a cup of coffee. Often savoured with a sandwich, cinnamon roll or something alike, it is a social interaction over a longer period of time where you discuss just about anything in the world.
The fika is as important to social life in Sweden as the wine and food in Italy.
I just recently had an american friend visiting me from Rome, and I introduced her to the concept.
Love at first sip, no exaggeration.
God, I will miss fika in Beijing.