Swedish Honesty: Why I Love Living Here!

I love living here.

And there are some days that particularly stand out as good “example days” of why I love living here.  These last two days were a good example of one of those reasons: Swedish Honesty – a Truly Swedish trait.

You know how when you realize that you’ve lost something, your brain goes into immediate overdrive as you recount every moment and retrace every moment in hopes of remembering where you might have lost it?  Maybe it was a precious ring or your keys.  Maybe it was your sanity.

That happened to me last night. I was out for coffee at Cafe Mineur (in beautiful Gamla Stan) yesterday afternoon and stayed until they closed at 19.00.  As I was hanging up my coat back at my apartment, I felt a sensation of horror: the inner pocket of my North Face McMurdo parka was unzipped.  It was empty.

Oh. My. God.

That was 3000 SEK of NK gift certificates that went missing.  That’s over $450 US dollars.  I panicked for about 30 seconds, searched every pocket, checked every other coat in my apartment, checked the drawers in my kitchen, and finally, with a sense of resignation, I called my friend Josh.

Josh.  I lost my NK gift certificates.

– What? How much?

3000 SEK worth of them.

– Shit.

I didn’t know what to do except hope that I dropped them at the cafe.  I thought maybe someone had gone through my pockets and stolen them since the inner pocket’s zipper was down, and I could swear that I had zipped it up.

Fast forward to today.  I called the cafe at 11.30, in hopes that they found the gift certificates.

Hej! I was one of the last customers you had yesterday and I lost some NK gift certificates.  You wouldn’t have happened to find them while cleaning?

– Actually, we did. We found it while cleaning and thought, “wow, that’s a lot of money.”  We’ll hold it for you.

Yeah, it was 3000 SEK!  Thank you so much, I’ll be right there.

That’s Swedish honesty for you.  They found the gift certificates – which didn’t have anyone’s name on it, and could have very easily just pocketed and gone on a shopping spree at my expense.  But they didn’t.  They knew it wasn’t theirs, and they knew that someone would be very sad if they didn’t get it back.  If this was the US, the cafe probably would have had a brand new Jura espresso machine from NK by now.  (Speaking of which, I love my new Jura ENA 3 espresso machine!)

I picked up the gift certificates from the cafe and I looked inside.  Not only was my 3000 SEK in gift certificates in there, but my SF Bio movie vouchers (600 SEK) were in there too.  I had completely forgotten about them!  3600 SEK, lost and found.  True story.  #TrulySwedish.

I love living here.

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