Well, oops. Yesterday’s post seems to have disappeared into the ether.
I like to begin each day with my mind wiped clean so I will try my best to recall way back to yesterday.
First we went to drop off some papers for Mariette at the agency that employs teachers for the school district. That turned into an on-the-spot interview for Mariette and we left with her now eligible for working with kids (which she loves) starting next month.
Next, we went to the tax agency in town and registered into the system. The bureaucrat there was very helpful and dressed the way the way you would expect to see on vacation: Madras blouse, cropped pants and sandals. She went out of her way to make sure the forms got filled in, xeroxes of documents made, etc. They will send me the Swedish equivalent of a social security number and then I will be registered.
Total time for both cycles was 45 minutes.
Then we went to another agency where Mariette was briefed on unemployment benefits should she be unable to work. Fat chance.
Everyone seems to work standing up. They have desks that raise or lower, (one I saw looked like it had hydraulics) and I am guessing that Sweden has acted rather quickly in response to the medical data showng that people who spend most of their time sitting tend to develop heart problems at a much higher rate than those who do not sit all day.
Never having worked in Sweden, I will nevertheless still receive a pension at age 65. The income tax rate is about the same as the U.S., 30% or so and they do have a 25% sales tax on most consumer items but from what I can tell, that is about it. Having a tiny military, I gather, makes it possible to create a lot of social programs.
In the evening, we went out and picked today’s dessert: wild raspberries.
I will try to get some photos posted today once I sort out some technical issues. I better speed things up because we are in for a solid week of gorgeous weather.
Thanks, by the way, for all the good wishes and comments we have received. Mariette and I appreciate them very much.