Author Archive Hazel Govender

Hazel in Sweden – The adventure continues

The past week I spent getting to know Lund better. Finding a bit more of the city every day and venturing to new parts (some were not new – I had passed by some time before since I got here, but in my lost state, only realised some time later, that I had in fact been there before).

Ullrika took me on a walk about one evening after work and gave me a tour. We walked into the cathedral which is busy being prepared for the Pope’s visit on Monday.  The Pope is visiting Lund to promote Chrisitian unity and Lund is preparing as the area around the central Cathedral is off limits on Sunday and Monday.

I’m really loving it in Lund – the beautiful architecture, the lovely atmosphere. It’s very peaceful and quiet, not a huge, big bustling city. I’m even used to being on my own.  Time to focus and reflect.

Lund can get very windy and that makes it feel even colder (as I am learning) but it’s all manageable with the right clothes or many layers of whatever you have.

This past week I attended a few seminars. It’s excellent to get to know the type of research that’s happening at Lund.  Collaboration and interdisciplinary studies are the norm here.  Also interesting to see how different research is presented and the collaboration between disciplines that are sometimes not so common in South Africa.

At the CEC, there are many visiting PhD students and researchers – very interesting research areas as well.

So I’m joining in the excitement about the Pope’s visit and in the meantime…reading ‘Understanding uncertainty’ by Dennis V. Lindley !

The first pic is the towers of Lund cathedral. The second is inside the cathedral and the last is the lovely tree-lined streets of Lund with the beautiful autumn colours


Next time you’ll hear all about my visit to Helsingor, Denmark (about 2 hours from Lund).

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Hazel in Sweden : First impressions

I’ve settled well in Lund. It’s a small city and I’m in an apartment in the city so I am within walking distance to most places. The city is typical Europe with much of its original buildings, beautifully preserved and a site to behold ! The central cathedral is majestic and many of the central university buildings are stunning. The weather is grey and rainy most of the time but the changing foliage makes up for this. The most stunning colours !  Next week we move to winter times and I’m told that we will soon be in store for very short days.

I miss my family and the warm weather back home but the locals are generally helpful and pleasant. The working environment at the CEC (Centre for Environmental and Climate Research) is very pleasant and people are welcoming and helpful. My host researcher, Ullrika Sahlin is very helpful and ensures that I’m okay.

The first week that I arrived, Ullrika invited me to her home and I attended her son’s school music concert, which was a fundraiser for a South African charity (Star for Life). The South African artists were from Durban and other parts of KZN and this was a real treat. They sang all the South African favourites. IT was a most memorable evening!!

Ullrika’s home is about one and half hours from Lund by train, out in the country.  It is beautiful out there, in Ullstorp!

My sense of direction is really bad so the first day or so I kept trying to find my way back home – which was not too difficult, after asking along the way.

Everyone here uses bicycles to get around but I don’t cycle… so Ullrika is trying to convince me to start – I don’t think so, especially with it getting progressively colder!

I enjoy the freedom of being able to walk everywhere, SAFELY, after living in South Africa. I dress sensibly and the rain doesn’t bother me too much, so getting around without my car is not a problem.

I am focussed on my research now and next month I present my research at a conference in Gothenborg.