Ärtsoppan or the Annual Pea Soup Dinner

Yesterday was Ärtsoppan, or the Annual Pea Soup Dinner, arranged by SWEA. I am not sure why but for some reason, Swedes used to eat pea soup (with pork and mustard) and sweet crepes on Thursdays. It is still quite common for lunch restaurants to serve pea soup and pancakes (as we call them) every Thursday in Sweden. So once a year, SWEA arranges a pea soup dinner and yesterday, I attended the dinner for the first time. It was very nice and it seemed to attract an older crowd than generally comes to these events. I always find it interesting to meet the older generation of Swedes, who spent most of their lives here, and to learn how they come over in the first place. Our common connection is Sweden but their Sweden is very different from the place where I grew up, just like my Sweden is already beginning to differ from the Sweden that my friends and family live in. What we also have in common is the experience of coming here and how it feels like to be a foreigner in the U.S., and somehow it gives us a sense a connection. So the dinner was very nice, even though I have to admit that I am not the biggest fan of pea soup (but I did take pancakes with jam and whipped cream twice!). I also met a woman with whom I had a common friend in Madeleine from my time in Moldova, which confirms that Sweden probably is just as small as Americans (and the rest of the world?) thinks!

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