I felt fine last night, but somehow ended up with a hangover anyway. I don't know if it's some kind of jet lag or what, because I didn't think I had that much to drink. In any event, my plans to get up early and explore the city were dashed, as I didn't haul my carcass out of bed until 10:00.
It rained for much of the morning, which was fine by me since I was planning on spending my time in museums. I started by taking a taxi to "Vasa Museet" which is just as incredible as the guidebooks lead you to believe... they managed to restore this old ship after it sat underwater for quite a long time, and it's pretty humbling to stand beside such a masterpiece of workmanship. From there I headed over to the "Nordiska Museet" which is filled with all kinds of crap from everyday living in Sweden over the years... clothes, toys, dishes, tableware, furniture, and just about everything else you can imagine... and found it to be much cooler than I thought it would be. Then it was off to The National Museum so I could take a look at their lone Monet (not really one of his better paintings) and the rest of their collection (which was interesting, but lacking in the areas I like the most).
It was then that I received quite a shock: The Museum of Modern Art and the Museum of Architecture are both closed for renovations! That sucks ass! Those were definitely in my top-ten-to-do-list while I was here, and they don't open until 2004! Harsh. I decided to console myself with lunch at Pizza Hut, which may seem like a total cop-out but, since I am vegetarian (and Swedish dishes all seem to be filled with fish), it was better than nothing (though the service was so bad I was wishing I had chose nothing). Lastly, I took a stroll through Gamla Stan (Old Town) and saw the Royal Palace and Treasury.
I've spotted a few motorcycles around, and many times they are BMW, which has me a bit homesick for my own ride back home. I kind of envy local bikers, because the surrounding area must be amazing for countryside riding. And Stockholm knows how to treat motorcyclists right, because I see "motorcycle parking" areas from time to time... that rocks!
Tonight my friends are once again taking me for a night out on the town. One of the girls has to travel in the morning, so we're going to cut the evening short around 11:00. This garnered a few apologies, as I am told that this is when things just start to get going in Stockholm on a Saturday night! Maybe I am just getting old, but I am not too sad about that. Any later, and I am wrecked the next day. At least I got to see the Hard Rock Cafe, at last...
BIZARRE! As I sit here in my hotel room typing this, I hear somebody whistling the tune from "The Andy Griffith Show." I was thinking perhaps that it might be some bored American tourist, but instead see that it is a one of the maintenance staff. How nice that American "historical culture" is thriving with the locals.