Finland has a long history as a country, a big part of that was spent being under the rule of other countries. During the Viking period there is plenty of evidence of Swedish settlements on the Åland islands and there is also evidence of Viking settlers having settled on the Finnish mainland. In the 1500’s when Swedish ruler Birger Jarl established rule over Finland during the Second Swedish Crusade in 1249 it was the beginning of more than 650 years of Swedish rule.
In 1809 Sweden lost control over Finland to Russia after a war. That was the beginning of more than 100 years of Russian rule of Finland. In 1917 Finland gained its independence from Russia and the Republic of Finland was formed.
Sweden is said to have the most restored 50’s U.S. made cars in the world. For example, although only 2 1958 Cadillac convertibles were originally sold in Sweden today there are over 200 of them registered in Sweden. Every year there are thousands of U.S. made classic cars imported into Sweden. In the town of Rättvik by lake Siljan in the landscape of Dalarna (Dalecarlia) there is an annual event called “Classic Car Week” , where thousands of proud owners show off their (mostly) restored classic cars. TheLosAngeleno was there and brought some pictures for your enjoyment!
I can highly recommend for any U.S. citizen that want to broaden their views to travel to Europe, spend some time in Spain, Italy, France and of course don’t forget Scandinavia. I just arrived in Sweden form southern Europe last night, and this morning I boarded a flight that essentially replicated my first flight (see earlier post). It was a different plane and a different airport in Stockholm, the old Bromma airport was the airport then, today Arlanda is the big commercial airport in Stockholm. As it happened, I found myself on the flight on the small Saab 2000 (50-58 passenger 2 engine turbo-prop)
with the King of Sweden Carl XVI Gustaf and his Queen Silvia. They were on their way to their summer castle on the island of Öland off the coast of Småland (birthplace of Ingvar Kamprad, the founder of IKEA) to spend some time there. I even had the chance of wishing them a relaxing time off at the castle. They are both very nice people and Queen Silvia has a most engaging smile – she is a beautiful Queen!
Here is the Queen in the passenger seat and the King driving for their trip over the bridge to the island and their summer castle.
The security detail followed in the standard issue black Volvo sedan.
I am sitting here at Arlanda airport outside of Stockholm waiting for my flight to Geneva and I just started thinking back to the first time I was on an airplane as a young kid back in 1961 or so. The plane was a Douglas DC3 operated by Scandinavian Airlines and I remember that when you boarded it, there was a steep climb up to your seat because the plane was leaning heavily. Low at the aft and really high at the nose.