During my family's Scandinavian vacation, we stayed for three nights at the farm that belongs to my husband's Swedish colleague, Hans. The farm, located north of Stockholm, has been in the family for generations. There are 17 structures in the estate, including several cottages, where Hans's three sisters and their children come to stay during the summer.
On the second day of our visit, we were supposed to go to Stockholm for sightseeing, then meet up with Hans for dinner at his college campus in Uppsala (Hans is a professor at Uppsala University, which is the oldest, prestigious university in Sweden).
Alas! We never got to leave the farm that day. With the sudden heat wave (reaching up to the 90's!) and the long, long daylight, which deprived us of much sleep, the result was fatigue and dehydration. My daughter fainted right after breakfast; she fell forward, briefly losing consciousness. As she was falling, one of her front teeth hit the wooden floor. There was a lot of bleeding and the tooth got knocked askew.
Hans, a kind and caring person, fussed over her and insisted that we should take her to the emergency. My mother's instinct told me that what she needed was a day's rest. So she rested all day; I got to sketch around the farm. We all enjoyed the day of rest immensely. As it turns out, the most treasured memory of our Scandinavian vacation is Hans's farm and his family.
|"Annakaren's Roses" (watercolor sketch)|
Annakaren is Hans's second sister, who was staying at the farm with her husband for the whole summer. It was she who showed me the many buildings around the farm. The roses that I sketched were planted by her a few years ago and were doing very well. She (and the entire family) admired my sketch at the dinner later that day, so I decided to paint an oil version for her.
|"Hans's Farm" (watercolor sketch"|