Despite the fact that there isn’t a great student campus/community in most college towns in Sweden (Lund and Uppsala being the exceptions. Is it a coincidence they’re rivals??), I think there is hope for academic socializing in Sweden. This afternoon/evening my Water Resources Master’s class had a little cake baking social hour, partly to help us get to know one another more and also to ’farewell’ a visiting lecturer. It was really nice to bake to cakes and make custard and whipped cream with about 18 people working on it. It was a bit awkward at first and corny cause we had to interview one another and then present it to the class when we started eating, but it was good because I realized I wasn’t the only one in my mid-twenties in the class, and I discovered some cool stuff about people.
One Strange thing (from an American perspective where everyone is louder) is that no one ever wants to volunteer to talk or start things, like today. The teacher even asked people at one table to start but they just looked at each other quietly. It is so funny. Being shy or afraid to say something in class is hard, for sure, and I still struggle with it sometimes, but come on, we’re in our 20s!! Once you talk to enough fellow classmates, you realize that everyone is equally nervous, insecure, or whatever, and that even if you’re not right, at least you tried, and even if you have two dimes of sense you may even be right or make a point.