2 Hills in Stockholm

Expat of the month
  • 2 Hills in Stockholm
Published on 2011-07-01 at 00:00 by Expat.com team
My name is Ron and I am from Maastricht in the Netherlands. I live in beautiful Stockholm and I am working for the moment as a financial controller in a very interesting company. I married my Swedish Girl last year in the Maastricht and we are this year together for 8 years.

My name is Ron and I am from Maastricht in the Netherlands. I live in beautiful Stockholm and I am working for the moment as a financial controller in a very interesting company. I married my Swedish Girl last year in the Maastricht and we are this year together for 8 years. Work and the Missus keeping me busy and to keep a certain balance in my life I love to travel and to run.

When and how did you decide to move to Sweden? Is it complicated to settle down in Stockholm? 

Me and the Missus started to make plans to move to Sweden about two years ago. The Missus was almost finished with her studies in the Netherlands and we were talking about the next step in our lives together over a glass of wine. So we decided to make Stockholm Sweden our new home base. This sounds easier because it took almost two years to finally come to Sweden. The Missus came over to Sweden already in September 2009 to find a job and a home in Sweden and for me it took until December 2010 to get to Sweden. 

It took so long for different reasons. The main reason which made settling down complicated in Stockholm was finding a good place to live and call our home. You really need a base to work on your future and you really need a place to stay. I think that the Missus had to move 8 times before she found us a good place. In the meanwhile, I arranged everything in Maastricht and I finished my job in Holland. In December I had to start my job-hunting in Stockholm because trying to find a job from outside Sweden was not very easy in my situation. I think it is easier when you are living in Sweden. 


Have you ever lived abroad before? How many countries have you visited?

I have been studying in the United States for five months a long time ago and this is my only experience with living abroad. Living in Sweden is the first time that I officially emigrated to another country. Like I said before I love to travel and I have been travelling for longer periods in Australia and the United States. I have been recently in Thailand and I love to see more of Asia. And because we lived in the "heart of Europe” it was easy to travel to a lot of different countries in Europe. The best place probably for me to be is South West France. I had the best holidays over there with a good friend and the Missus.

What do you like the most about Sweden? 

I come from Holland were we live with 16.000.000 people in a very small part of Europe. Here in Sweden there is much more space and were ever you go the nature is around the corner. Although we live close to the center of Stockholm, we have deer running around our garden and when you take the ferry in Stockholm you see how green it still is around Stockholm.

How is / was the cultural shock?

There was not really a cultural shock for me. There is basically not that much difference between the cultures in Europe. Although some people want to make you believe something different. Sweden has the same problems as the Netherlands and we are all trying to make a living. Off course there are differences but these ones are small.

If I want to complain about a thing then it is about the fact that the Swedes love to stand in line and just wait here in Stockholm. They wait for getting into a restaurant, a museum, a boat, systembolaget etc.

Do you miss anything from your homeland? 

Besides my friends and family, I really can get a craving for Indonesian Food and licorice. Luckily I have the chance to go back to the other home in Maastricht easily.

Any 'memories of an expat' you would like to share with other Expat blog members?

I guess the most important thing here in Sweden is to get your “personnummer”. Without a “personnummer” you cannot do much here in Sweden. After I got mine it finally hit me that I moved to Sweden and that I was starting up a new life in a different country. Some people are only dreaming about moving to another country and don't dare to make the step. I made that one and we were going to see where this step is going to end.

Your blog: when did you start it? For what reasons?

I started my blog to keep my friends informed about our life here in Sweden. But I also want to give some information about living in Stockholm for other people who are interested of living in Sweden and Stockholm and share my experiences.

Did you make new friends with your blog?

Not really friends yet but I have been emailing with Swedish Freak, a girl who is writing about her life in the North of Sweden. It is very nice to see other expats experiences

When did you register on https://www.expat.com ? Any particular reasons?

I started my blog at the end of December 2010 and I registered with Expat blog in March 2011. Just to get a bigger audience basically. When I started my blog I didn't have an idea that the blog society was so big. I got interested in this phenomenon called blogs, see it also as doing research about blogs. But mainly my blog was about informing my friends about our life in Sweden.  

Which advice would you give to people who would like to live in Sweden?

Just go with the flow, take small steps to get to your goal of living in Sweden and don't expect everything to happen at once. Things need time and The Hills reckon that you need at least a year to settle. And another very important thing is that you have to find yourself a home to live in and not just a place to stay. Home is where the heart is and that is true.

2 Hills in Stockholm