5 & 6 August 2017: We made it! Usually our flights are fine and completely uneventful, but this time we were so delayed getting out of RDU that we weren’t sure we were going to make our connection in Newark. We were told that United flights were backed up due to bad weather previously in the week. Our 11:05am flight ended up being nearly 4 hours delayed. Thank goodness we’d built in a long layover. Still, we had to run through the Newark airport dragging our bags along to make sure that we were at the gate on time for our Stockholm flight. We’d already asked the airline about rebooking via different routes and nothing was available. Had we not made our connection, we would’ve been stuck in NJ and we would’ve had to depart the next day instead (!).

On the delayed flight to Newark, before we realized we’d have to sit on the tarmac for an extra hour (!)

Just about to land in Stockholm on a gray summer day

Lucy resting on the express train

The flight to Stockholm was just fine overall, but turbulence in the beginning made dinner service slower than normal. As a result, we all got to sleep much later than we usually do. None of us got more than four hours of sleep and a few of us got only two hours. The turbulence also did a number on Lucy’s stomach and she ended up getting sick just as the flight was landing. The kids were sitting by themselves, but they got through it just fine. Thomas was especially helpful to Lucy while Isaac apparently slept through it all.

We took the express train into town since it saves us so much time. We do have to change trains, but the time savings generally makes it worth that extra hassle. This was our first time changing trains the new City Station became operational in mid-July. Since 2009, the city has been working on creating the new station, which is located underneath T-Centralen. The commuter trains now run in their own tunnels, making delays less common.

Finding our way to the commuter trains in the brand new and shiny Stockholm City Station

On the commuter train to Södra station

We only had to travel one stop on the commuter train, then it was a short walk to the apartment. We got very lucky because it didn’t start raining until after we were inside and unpacking our bags. The rest of the day was chilly with rain showers off and on. It felt pretty good to us, that nice cool weather after such hot and humid conditions back home.

Since we were all quite tired from traveling, we took long naps in the afternoon. Then Lucy and I did some grocery shopping, using our hand cart to haul back some of the heavier items. After that we spent some time settling in and making a plan for dinner. We located umbrellas and then walked a short distance to one of our favorite local restaurants, Stekpannan.

Dinner with candlelight at Stekpannan

Enjoying his pasta carbonara

We all enjoyed the meal thoroughly. Isaac was so pleased with his pasta dish that he declared it to be one of his top ten all-time favorites. We were too stuffed for dessert (we’ve never made it dessert there!), but we stopped off at the ICA grocery store on our way back and picked up some snacks for later. Once back in the apartment, we all watched some of the London 2017 games on tv, had some treats, and then headed to bed. We are so thankful to have made it to Stockholm safely and as planned.