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9 years in Sweden & the winds of change

Nine years ago I sold all my furniture. I threw or gave away as many pieces of clothing as possible, and put the rest in boxes, except for what I could fit in two suitcases. I wrapped all my dishes up carefully, putting extra paper towels around my favorite mugs, pretty sad I couldn't bring them. I sorted and packed all the many photos I'd had pinned up everywhere and slipped a couple dozen into the suitcases. I'd thrown a goodbye party a few days before, but one by one my friends came by to give a private, often more emotional, farewell. I drove with a full car out of Santa Barbara, crying in the dark, up to the San Francisco area for family goodbyes and storage errands. Shortly after that, I was on a plane, looking down at an expanse of forest, and preparing to land while listening to the 8 minute Tiesto & Jonsi song I'd been playing for a year while envisioning that exact moment, but finally living it (dork). Then, nine years ago today, I finally arrived in Swe…

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