There is a lot to be said for spending Christmas in Sweden. It’s freezing and it gets dark by 3.30pm but it somehow makes Christmas more enchanting. Hot dinners become far more appetising. The man dressed as Santa Clause at the local shops looks more welcoming because unlike his counterpart in Australia he isn’t sweating like a pig. People are ice-skating and singing songs by candlelight. Real Xmas trees that have been freshly chopped down from a forest are sold outside petrol stations. There is always half a chance you’ll wake up the next morning to find the street full of snow. And finally, the fact that it’s dark for 20 hours of the day means people really make an effort with Xmas lights.
In Göteborg just about every lamppost, tree, bridge, window or any other vertical structure, is decorated with Xmas lights. The power being drained to feed the city’s ornamentation would give Al Gore a fit.