Making a Home in Sweden

The view over Ruby’s balcony in Stockholm.

Ruby Ling is studying English and Sociology at Wesleyan University. She spent the Spring 2019 semester in Stockholm with The Swedish Program.

Alviksvagen was not just my apartment in Sweden, it was the place that made the rest of Stockholm feel like a home. I shared my incredible apartment, which was incomparable to any of my college dorm rooms, with my roommate Maggie in a suburb of Stockholm called Bromma. Our home neighbored parks, a small grocery store, had views of the water and was only a short walk from my favorite cafe and bakery, Park Konditori.

A beautiful trail near the apartment.

Our apartment was a serene place to call home and the ideal setting to relax, work, cook, and be with friends. Its close proximity to the city, about 25 minutes, gave me the best of both worlds; I was immersed in Stockholm throughout the day, but also had access to nature and quiet whenever I wanted. I grew to love my short walk to the train, as I passed mothers pulling their children in sleds through the wintered streets, and high schoolers running off the tram to make it to school on time.

Bromma has a strong and welcoming community, from the neighbors I met in the apartment laundry room to the check-out clerks in the grocery store. Living there enhanced my overall experience in Stockholm, as it gave me the independence and responsibility of living like residents of Stockholm do. I am so grateful for the comfort and support that my Swedish Program apartment provided me. My apartment in Stockholm was nicer than any I will likely have for many years to come, and that’s just one reason why it felt so bittersweet to leave.

The apartment building


The living room