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My Blog

Fictional Friends

I had a surreal moment a couple weekends ago when I read the passage below in “The Girl Who Played with Fire” where Lisabeth Salander describes buying furniture for her new apartment…
“…She drove to IKEA at Kungens Kurva and spent three hours browsing through the merchandise, writing down the item numbers she needed.  She made a few quick decisions.
     She bought two Karlanda sofas with sand-colored upholstery, five Poang armchairs, two round side tables of clear-lacquered birch, a Svansbo coffee table, and several Lack occasional tables.  From the storage department she ordered two Ivar combination storage units and two Bonde bookshelves, a TV stand and a Magiker unit with doors.  She settled on a Pax Nexus three-door wardrobe and tow small Malm bureaus.
     She spent a long time selecting a bed, and decided on a Hemnes bed frame with mattress and bedside tables...”
Most normal people read IKEA and immediately skim the next couple paragraphs with all the boring details. Thanks to the many, many, many hours spent at IKEA in the States and here, I read this passage and immediately conjure up detailed images of Salander’s apartment.  We bought many of the same pieces of furniture for our Australian home.  In fact, she and I sleep in the same bed!  She didn’t say exactly which duvet cover she bought but I’m willing to bet it’s the Alpine Ljuv! 
Needless to say, I immediately got on the computer to see if I’d like the couple of pieces of furniture she mentioned that I wasn’t familiar with.  We clearly have similar tastes and I still need to furnish the “guest quarters” in the lower level. 
I’m beginning to think that Lisabeth Salander and I, as unlikely a pair as we may be, could become great friends!  Or at least shopping buddies. Have I been spending so much time by myself that I’m starting to befriend fictional characters?  No.  I’ve just come to realize that I can find something in common with just about anyone.  It's a pleasant reminder to be open minded as I try to establish friendships in this new and wonderful country.

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