It’s been a while since the last Country Club tour, but the “visit” to Sweden last Thursday (June 4) was worth the wait.
Members of the Emo group were treated to a remarkable afternoon of information, stories, jokes, songs, and delicious food from Sweden.
Roughly 50 seniors and interested residents listened intently as Renne Kivell, Gerry Fisk, June Winik, and Mary Curtis shared some of their personal memories and Swedish family history.
The four presenters took turns speaking about the geography, history, and culture of the people of Sweden. Curtis, for instance, gave those on hand a brief glimpse of the history of the country prior to 1400.
Winik then went on to speak about the Vikings, jokingly pointing out that Sweden can’t take complete blame for the actions of the ferocious Vikings since they also came from other Scandinavian countries.
In fact, she noted the Viking raids helped pave the way for future explorations of the unknown areas of the world.
Curtis then described a period in Swedish history when it wasn’t the peaceful, neutral country we know today. In the early 1600s, the King of Sweden, used a strong Swedish navy to aggressively battle with most of the countries of northern Europe.
It was not until 1821 that Sweden finally gave up its vision of conquering other countries and developed its present policy of neutrality and peace.
Brightly-decorated tables, historical artifacts, flags, and costumed presenters helped transport the captivated audience on their make-believe tour of Sweden.
It was the music, light-hearted humour, and the personal anecdotes, however, that made the entire afternoon such an enjoyable experience.
The presenters went on to explain how Sweden has enriched cultures around the world. Since the country’s transformation to a peaceful nation, the Swedish people have placed a great deal of importance on the areas of science, the environment, and medicine.
Their inventions positively have impacted the modern world.
Swedish ingenuity has produced the pacemaker, the three-point seatbelt, the global positioning system, the flat-screen TV, ultrasound, and many other conveniences we all take for granted.
The afternoon concluded with what the organizers called a small “smorgasbord.”
Renne Kivell, the 91-year-old member of the presenting group, along with the others, spent many hours preparing some of the traditional treats of Sweden.
This month’s Country Club tour not only informed, entertained, and amply fed those in attendance, but left them eager to participate in the next “trip” around the world.