Monday, April 14, 2003

Whenever I arrive in the U.S., the most shocking thing is that everyone speaks English. It feels too simple and not to be trusted, and I find myself translating everything into Swedish in my head, turning myself completely around and making myself crazy.

Which leads directly to the second most shocking thing, which is to find that I've become inarticulate, no matter that my father thinks I am the most garrulous of all his children. I used to be garrulous, now I'm just vague and not so good at explaining myself, so it takes more words to say what I think. I haven't become so European as to give up trying to let everyone know what I think about everything, a trait that is characteristic of us Americans. But it takes an awful long time to do it these days.

The third most shocking thing is that the entire first section of the Chicago Tribune is devoted to war coverage, there are all of three articles out of some hundred that cover anything besides the war. This is actually not shocking, it's to be expected, but it does take the fun out of having a real U.S. paper and the time to read it every morning. And makes me uneasy, because there are many other things going on that people should know about.

It's good to be home again, despite the sleepiness from jetlag. By home I mean, sleeping at the husband's side in Stockholm.

The Swedish name for the day is Jon Blund, who is the Swedish sandman.

- by Francis S.

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