D for Dani

No man is a failure who is enjoying life.

Palma, Spain

Recently took a mini trip to Palma; it’s very beautiful and the food is delicious! We had the chance to eat at some of the best restaurants and I thought the prices were fairly reasonable. 

We stayed at a beautiful Airbnb and hired a personal chef. 

Spain is like a warmer Sweden. There are a lot of Swedes here…



Venice, Italy

We spent our Easter weekend in Venice. It’s an absolutely beautiful city with lots of history. I also got engaged here so I love it even more! 

Our Engagement story:

We went to San Giorgio Maggiore and wanted to go to the top of the tower to see the city. It costs 6 Euros per person and they don’t take cards – we didn’t have any cash on us either. So we went to a nearby cafe and asked a random stranger to buy his lunch with our card for some cash. He just handed us the money without asking for anything in return. We went to the top and it was breathtaking and just so peaceful. My boyfriend didn’t plan on proposing to me up there but I guess he felt the timing was right so he proposed! 

I bumped into that kind stranger again when we were on our way down. I was so excited I shoved my hand to his face and was yelling at him to check out my ring. He was confused and slightly frightened, and rightfully so. I told him we got engaged, and then I hugged him and thanked him. 

Lesson learned:
Always have some cash when traveling. 

Pray for Stockholm

It was another beautiful day in Sweden – nothing out of the ordinary. Later in the day we got news of the attacks. The entire thing didn’t really sink in until hours later. It’s hard to explain the emotions I’m feeling but it’s a mixture of disbelief and anger. 

Although I’ve only been here 6 months, I consider it my home. I’ve never felt safer here, and although I was a few meters away from the entire incident, that feeling of safety hasn’t changed. Sweden is a kind and strong country, we will make it through! 

Morocco 

Recently went to Morocco (Fes, Marrakech, Chefchaouen, Sahara Desert, Casablanca, Tangier). It was absolutely beautiful! 


Why I’m Learning Swedish

Learning Swedish has been tough work and slightly expensive. I spend 2 hours, twice a week, right after work to learn the language – it’s EXHAUSTING. And those classes cost me close to 3000sek every 5 weeks. 

A lot of my colleagues find it cool that I’m making the effort. However, there are a few folks (Swedes and non-Swedes) who question WHY I even invest so much time and money when most Swedes can speak English. 

My network consists of other expats and I know for some, learning Swedish has been their way of acclimating. For others, they just like the idea of learning a new language. For me, it’s a bit of the two previously stated reasons, but it has to do more with respect – I’m in Sweden, I should try to speak Swedish. It’s a bit odd but I do feel slightly guilty when my colleagues are trying to carry out conversations in English to make sure I feel included. 

So yeah, I learn Swedish out of respect. 

Winter in Sweden 

Feeling at home and loving the opportunity to capture this beautiful country. Although it can be cold during the winter, but with proper winter gear, it’s not an issue. Like someone had said, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothes.” 

Adjusting to Sweden 

Sweden is beautiful and I’m liking things so far. But I have to admit it’s all very hard – starting a new job, making new friends, figuring out the simplest things like sending out mail, being away from my mom, etc. The foreignness/ newness makes it hard to feel at home. My guy and I have done an okay job meeting new people and trying out new things every weekend to keep ourselves occupied. We plan on joining an Expat Pub Crawl group to meet more people and we have a few awesome trips coming up. 

Going through this move has made me appreciate my mom a lot more. Moving to Sweden was tough, but at least I can somehow figure things out since most Swedes speak English. My mom came to the US with no education and no English skills. She worked three jobs and eventually started her own business. I can’t even imagine the strength and the grit it took…

How We Met…

I made this move for a guy and I never really talked about us, how we met, etc. I thought of it after filling out a comment to enter myself into one of Kenzas big giveaway (hope I get it).

So where to begin… I normally do not go out EVER (I am a home girl, I like my movies and PJs). It was my last week in college so my friends and I decided to go out and have a bit “fun.” We drank and found out that our alcohol tolerance had skydived tremendously – by the time I got to the club, I was pretty drunk (classy, I know). We ended up at a club in Chinatown in Boston, and it happened to be Asian night. Music was good and we all had so much fun! But in the sea of Asians, I saw this white thing doing this dorky, hokey pokey dance. I went over and asked if he wanted to dance. I gave him my number and we went our separate ways – he did chase me around 5 times that night (not creepy at all). The next day, I texted him and after a month we went out on a real (sober) date. 4 years later, I moved to SWEDEN with him and we are living happily ever after (minus when he forgets to take out the trash and clean his dishes or when he forgets to leave the toilet seat down). Yep, happily ever after.

My mom still thinks we met at a company outing… NOT at a club. We are keeping it classy.

Paris, France

I went to Paris a few weeks back and it was so breathtaking – so much history and beauty in every corner. I loved how rich it was in the arts; there were museums and art exhibitions in every corner. Food was just delicious and the people were all very kind and helpful! I spent $100 on my round trip ticket (Ryan Air) and $25/night on Airbnb (5 nights) – I definitely would go back in a heart beat. 

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Found a Job in Stockholm! 

I moved to Stockholm permanently on October 15th. I had about 6 final interviews the week of the 17th and got 3 offers by the end of the week. When you lay it out that way, it sounds easy. But it honestly wasn’t – I lost 15 pounds by the end of it. 

I started applying for jobs 2 months before moving over – I reached out to approximately 200 companies. I applied to jobs on LinkedIn and CareerBuilder, I used my network and had folks introduce me to Swedish Managers, and I even blindly reached out to CEOs to see if their company needed help. 

The last two weeks before moving to Stockholm was absolute HELL. I had a very busy, full time job, I was couch surfing, and I was doing interviews at crazy hours because of the time difference. Needless to say, I was exhausted! 

I did what I did because I was told how competitive and ruthless the Swedish market is. I was even told to be comfortable with the idea of being unemployed for 8-10 months. I was driven by fear of not finding work! 

I am not saying you’ll get a job the week you land, but you will find a job. Sweden has the top 10 largest IT start up communities in the world. Plus, it’s a very progressive country that understands the importance of globalization, so everyone here values good talent and diversity. And as a huge bonus, everyone speaks English so Swedish isn’t mandatory. 

My biggest advice is to stay focused and positive – mindset is everything. If you have questions, need advice or help, please let me know! 


Treated myself to a trip to Paris! Next post will have more pics.