We know it and see it: the Swedes travel a lot by bike. Even in winter when it’s cold. This is what Sheila Nordström explained to us while showing off her bike on which she travels between home and work, through snow and wind. The bicycle is even fitted with snow tyres, which just goes to show you!
Midday meals for participants were served in the school’s restaurant located on Drottningatan, one of the town’s main streets. A very fine restaurant run by teams of students in the kitchen and dining room, supervised by teachers.
Virginska skolan in Orebrö has several partnerships with schools in other European countries, which explains why we met a teacher from Semur- en- Auxois ( France) on placement with a his students; and the teacher was obviously delighted to be in Sweden.
The ‘rogues gallery’ of the Christmas in Europe participants was created by the students in the school’s media studies department and handed out to everyone taking part. This excellent idea will enable everyone to remember exactly what everyone else looks like. And as an added bonus the school’s media studies department published a short daily news sheet reporting the previous day’s highlights, together with photographs! Well done!
If it had taken place half an hour later the parade in the streets of Orebrö old town would have attracted five or ten times more spectators. Indeed the schedule specified a departure from the City Hotel at 11.30, and at 11.30 on the dot, off they went. But the shops in town didn’t open until midday, and indeed there were still very few people on the streets. A bit of a shame.
Thomas Gasteiner, a teacher and ‘cheese waiter’ at the Semmering school in Austria, dreams of setting up an international cheese committee across Europe. And he hasn’t yet given up the idea of setting up a cheese competition as part of the AEHT annual conference programme. A good idea?
Before reaching the sports hall where the Christmas in Europe exhibition was being held, all the visitors couldn’t help noticing the tourism exhibition which had been set up in the entrance. This was because almost every delegation had brought along in their luggage an impressive quantity of tourist brochures. Nothing is wasted…
The organisers had thought of an original way of seating guests at the gala dinner so as to ensure that the participants mixed with members of other delegations. You had to choose a ticket indicating the table number. Except that, for reasons we may never understand, a lot of guests took no notice of this, and the inevitable happened: several guests chose the easy way and simply stayed in their own group.
You can’t stop the clock
The band which played during the gala evening, which was an imitation of the famous ABBA group, didn’t play for long; but it was just long enough for a number of guests to get up and dance a little.
An obviously brilliant idea
The 15th Christmas in Europe was drawing to a close with the showing of a video about the next one, in Semmering. And after the handover of the AEHT flag from Orebrö to Semmering, Anna Posch, a teacher from Semmering, thanked the Orebrö team once again, before turning to Christiane Keller, the inventor of Christmas in Europe, with these words: ‘Thanks to you too, Christiane, and it’s a shame that it wasn’t me who had the idea!’ Now wasn’t that a nice compliment for the idea of Christmas in Europe, which is idea a brilliant one!
As soon as the participants arrived at their hotel, the charming girls from the Virginska Skolan gave each of them a beautiful bag which contained not only information about their stay but also some little presents which, as the saying goes, maintain friendships. Many thanks on behalf of all those who received them!