Postcard Memoirs

Postcards from afar: Immersion Travel, Cultural Travel. Currently in… Singapore!


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Guide To Moving From Texas

So I moved from Texas at the end of the semester. Thought I’d make a note here under “Guide To Moving To Texas” because, well, I wanted to finish the chapter. Sort of. Or add the final chapter, maybe. Not leave you hanging.

Moving was a bit complicated, to say the least. The apartment lease expired, the home insurance expired, the phone contract expired… a lot of things finished without me having to do a lot about it – or so it seemed.

The company I leased from wanted me to provide an American address to which they could send the check for the reimbursement for the deposit, which was a staggering 2600 USD since I’m foreign and don’t have a social security number (or conveniently have a parent with a social security number). I finally found a way to have it sent to an American address, and then forwarded to my home address in Sweden. And I had to find a bank in Sweden who cashes American checks. But really? If I hadn’t happened to know people in the US who wanted to help me out, there was no way for me to get my deposit back simply because I’m not American. Quarters On Campus have loads of foreign students renting from them so I think that was very discriminatory.

I still haven’t had my deposit back because they haven’t done their inspection of the apartment yet. They circumvented the leasing contract so I had no way of being there while they inspect. They say they’re going to take pictures to use as “proof”, but I’m not sure I trust them all that much…

Getting rid of all my things was a hassle too. I gave away most things that I didn’t bring home. Some of my American friends got my foam roller, yoga mat, queen size mattress, lamps, clothes hangers, and a few other things. I could have sold it, but I honestly wanted to give it away to someone who wanted it. Guess I was feeling emotional and thankful for my time in Texas… :’)

My parents came over for my last few days in Texas. I showed them around, and they helped me pack up my things and clean out my room. They especially enjoyed Rudy’s Bar-B-Q, where you buy meat by the pound and eat it off a paper rather than a plate. We went to the one on S Capital of Texas Highway. I’m not a huge fan of BBQ, but I don’t mind it. I’d never queue for Franklin’s, which is America’s best apparently and happens to be located in Austin. If you’re not a fan of queuing for 4 hours for a meal either, a great Texas BBQ alternative is Rudy’s!

After four days together in Austin, my parents and I flew off to the Caribbean to celebrate the end of my exchange, my birthday (belated by, oh, 6 months…), my mom’s birthday (while in the Caribbean), my dad’s 70th birthday (a bit ahead of time), and my parent’s 40th anniversary!

That’s where I am at the moment – and as a spoiler, after this I’ll return to Sweden for three days before I fly off to Singapore for the rest of the summer!


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The Tornado That Never Happened

Dear friends and family,

Kära familj och vänner!

The day of our win in Eurovision was graduation day at the University of Texas. Unfortunately the government sent out tornado warnings to all smart phones in Travis County so the graduation ceremony had to be cancelled. Talk about an anticlimactic finish to four years of intense studies for all the graduates… But I can’t imagine a lot of people can say their graduation was cancelled due to a tornado! After the tornado warning was over we tried heading to a bar but the rain was coming down so heavily we literally looked like we’d had a swim in a pool after just walking a few feet. Crazy! The weather calmed down a bit after awhile so we headed out to celebrate our graduating friends (and our Eurovision win!) eventually but I must say it was the wettest night out I’ve ever had.

Dagen vi vann Eurovision var också examensdag på University of Texas. Regeringen skickade tyvärr ut tornado varningar till alla smartphones i Travis County så examensceremonin fick ställas in. Snacka om ett antiklimax för alla studenter som just avslutat fyra år av intensiva studier… Men jag kan inte tänka mig många kan säga at deras examen ställdes på grund av att en tornado! Efter tornadovarningen var över vi försökte gå till en bar men det regnade så hårt att vi bokstavligen såg ut som om vi tagit ett dopp i en pool efter bara någon meter. Helt galet! Vädret lugnade ner lite efter ett tag så vi gick ut för att fira våra nyexaminerade vänner (och vår Eurovisionvinst!) så småningom, men jag måste säga att det var den blötaste utekväll jag någonsin har haft. 😉

https://www.instagram.com/p/3EtofWyCVF


Love,

Varma hälsningar,

Erika


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Wakeboarding!

Dear friends and family,

Kära familj och vänner!

I found my true love: wakeboarding. Like water skis, but on a board. Even face planting is fun!

Jag har hittat min stora kärlek: wakeboarding. Som vattenskidor, fast på en bräda. Till och med att kapsejsa är kul!

https://instagram.com/p/26Y-HBSCSP/

Love,

Varma hälsningar,

Erika


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Starting To Let Go

Dear friends and family,

Kära familj och vänner!

I’m so looking forward to this summer! Finals are happening right now, and I definitely am sleep deprived, but I feel like I can get through it with a smile on my face just knowing that my parents are here to visit soon, then we’re heading to St. Martin in the Caribbean for 10 days to celebrate their 40th anniversary, and after a couple of days in Sweden after that, I’m heading off to Singapore for two months!!

All the goodbyes are bittersweet, but it feels great knowing I now have a few more couches to sleep on around the world!

Jag så ser fram emot denna sommar! Slutproven pågår just nu, och jag har definitivt sömnbrist, men jag känner att jag kan ta mig igenom det med ett leende eftersom jag vet att mina föräldrar kommer hit på besök snart, sedan åker vi till St Martin i Karibien i 10 dagar för att fira deras 40-jubiléeum, och till sist blir det ett par dagar i Sverige innan jag beger mig till Singapore i två månader!!

Alla farväl är bitterljuva, men det känns bra att veta att jag nu har några till soffor att sova på runt om i världen!

https://instagram.com/p/2YoxGeSCfa/

https://instagram.com/p/2g75xaSCZM/

https://instagram.com/p/2oH_BGSCR4/

Love,

Varma hälsningar,

Erika


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Glad Valborg!

Dear friends and family,

Kära familj och vänner!

This was how I spent Walpurgis night in Austin. I missed Uppsala, a little bit. But this was pretty nice too…

Det var så här jag tillbringade Valborg i Austin. Jag saknade Uppsala litegrann. Men det här var ganska härligt det med…

https://instagram.com/p/2Gy6PNSCQD/

 

Love,

Varma hälsningar,

Erika


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Cards Against Humanity

Dear friends and family,

Kära familj och vänner!

I am now a proud owner of Cards Against Humanity. This is a fun game where you get ca. 7 white “answer cards”. You then grab a random black “question card”, and you’re then supposed to answer as funnily as possible with one of your white answer cards. My very last white card fitted horribly well with this question, didn’t it?

Jag är nu stolt ägare av Kort Mot Mänskligheten. Detta är ett roligt spel där man får ca 7 vita “svarskort”. Man drar sedan ett svart “frågekort”, och sedan ska man svara på frågan så roligt som möjligt med ett av de vita svarskorten man har. Mitt allra sista vita kort passade obehagligt bra på denna fråga, eller hur?

https://instagram.com/p/1OOlmnyCc3/

 

Love,

Varma hälsningar,

Erika


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Happy Holi!

Dear friends and family,

Kära familj och vänner!

The Hindu society at the University of Texas organised a Holi festival on campus!!!!!

Den hinduiska föreningen på University of Texas organiserade en Holi festival på campuset!!!!!

https://instagram.com/p/00zWokSCVq/

 

Love,

Varma hälsningar,

Erika