Scandinavia 2016: Day 6 – Walking Beautiful Stockholm
In 2016 we are leading 4 high school summer trips. You can read all about our Global Innovators trips or get in touch to ask us any questions about the programs. Our 2016 Scandinavia trip “Getting Americans on the Bicycle” focuses on innovation, start-ups and community in cities around the world. During the trip, students take turns writing a daily blog post to describe their project process and exploration, follow along here. On July 25, the group began their day with a walk to the old town area of Stockholm. The first activity of the day consisted of splitting up into two groups, one person from each group would act as a leader and guide the other group members around old town Stockholm. This person would lead for 5 minutes (someone in the group had to be a time keeper) and then signal for the next person to lead for 5 minutes. The activity was to be played in absolute silence, so only pointing and hand gestures would be allowed. At the conclusion of the activity, the group sat around in a circle and discussed what they learned from having to be a leader and not being allowed to speak while walking.
A stand out moment during the day would be when it started to rain and then hail as the group made their way to the ferry boat after lunch. Following the hail storm, the group walked over to the Vasa Museum. The museum houses the original Vasa ship that sank after going 1,300 m into her maiden voyage. There were also miniature display cases depicting individual parts of the ship and the step-by-step process in which the ship was excavated from the sea floor. For dinner, the group went on a 3-hour dinner cruise that toured the archipelago.
While walking around Stockholm, it occurred to me that the infrastructure of Stockholm had made it very difficult to becoming a bike friendly city. I realized that it would be difficult to get Americans on bicycles if a city does not have the perfect combination of infrastructure, geography, climate, and government policies in place. A major breakthrough on the project was making the comparison between Copenhagen and Stockholm and seeing the differences in them in regards to biking. In Copenhagen, there were many locals, young and old, on bicycles while in Stockholm it would be a rare sight to see bikers. To figure out what encouraged people in Copenhagen to bike and what discouraged bikers in Stockholm would be a major breakthrough in creating a deliverable project.
Something that was really unexpected that occurred today was the rain and hail storm that occurred while we were at the ferry dock. This is because the weather forecast said there would be a 10% chance of rain and it ended up heavily raining and hailing. The single best moment of the day was being able to see the beautiful sunset from the view of the dinner cruise ship deck.