Saturday, August 2, 2014

My Stockholm Diary - 16

With Vasudha & Sami Sood
On Thursday, July 31, we had a cosy family dinner with Vasudha and Sami Sood in their spacious flat in a posh locality in the heart of Stockholm facing the Humlegård Park. The Park is hosting an old library of Stockholm, Kungliga Biblioteket (Royal Library). Our hosts Vasudha and Sami are very close friends of Anju and Naresh. Sami is a prominent businessman with diversified activities like travel agencies, tea gardens, hotels and resorts not only in Stockholm and Helsinki but also in India. I found both Vasudha and Sami humble but down to earth professionals. We also played Sweep, Teenpati and Poker (cards games) with the mother of Sami, a gracious and calm and cool lady. It was an enjoyable evening with delicious vegetarian dishes including Himachali curry called Maani.

Naresh´s friend Ajay Pal was very keen to show us the country side in one of his cosy limousines. Ajay is running a taxi service with a large fleet of cosy and costly limousines in Stockholm. We accepted the offer along with our fellow visitors from Delhi and common friends, Kiran and Ram Berry and undertook the tour on Friday, August 1. It was really good. From Stockholm, we drove to Sigtuna
Gripsholm Castle at Mariefred
through Märsta handicrafts and mementos shop in the country side. The scenic beauty of Sigtuna waterfront (Mälarin lake) was breath taking. From Sigtuna, we passed through the vast tracks of ripe and golden wheat fields and reached yet another tourist attraction, a small town of about 4000 inhabitants, Mariefred. The restaurants by the side  of Mariefred waterfront and famous Gripsholm Castle were full of tourists enjoying themselves with chilled bear and wines. Ajay treated us nicely over a good lunch at a good restaurant, Svenska Kulturpärlor, over looking the historical Gripsholm castle on the waterfront. I found Ajay very reverential and respectful. We wish him all happiness and success in the years to come. Ajay drove us back to Stockholm through the picturesque country side well in time in the evening to catch up with our dinner engagement with Indu and Kuldip Chopra at Tumba.

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