The Road To Herrang

Most everyone that has ever done any kind of swing dancing has heard of one of the longest running camp in our generation. Herrang Dance Camp in Sweden is the closest thing we Lindy Hoppers have to heaven on earth since the Savoy Ballroom!

With this blog I thought instead of writing out a description and history of the camp I would just re-write an entry from my own personal journal (yes it was written with ink and on paper) that accounts the adventure that was my travel to get to Herrang.

Well it’s been a long time since my last entry in this trippy trip and a bunch of stuff has happened. So last time we left this caped crusader I was leaving Rome for Florence and making my way to Herrang. I missed my train on my train from Florence to Munich and was stuck in Florence for 12 hours, suck! The one saving grace was that the food in Florence was amazing! Way way better then the food in Rome which was so horrible. Had some the best chicken and pasta cream sauce ever!

Well night time came and so did the train which was a sleeper train now that it’s about 10:00 PM. I was so excited on got on the train right away and found that there was a reason why people didn’t get on the train early, no power no air conditioning. It was freaking hot as all hell in there and I thought it was going to be like this for the rest of the ride. It was going to be one of those “European train rides.” so I found out how to open all of those tricky windows and since I was the only one in my cabin, I graves one of the sheets and began to fan and flail about wildly hoping that I could get some air circulating around there. And see I thought the windows were tinted, they weren’t and everyone out side could enjoy my pain and furry. Many people stopped and watched as the wild American in the train thinks he’s a ghost, is what they said as they laughed and pointed. I saw them they saw me and I thought well damn it, I’m still hot so I’m going to just keep going.

Well the train finely turned on and so did the air. The rest of the ride was smooth and slept the entire way. I woke up when we arrived in Munich and to the giant 5 story mall/train station. I climbed all the way to the top, grabbed some pastries, coke and ran for my next train to Hamburg. It seems like I’ve been running a lot for these here trains lately, but mostly because I don’t want to miss a train again. Oh silly man that I am, because I roll into Hamburg and guess what? Miss another freaking train! And this time I am forced to stay the night in the train station huddled on a bench with all my things tied to me and wrapped some extra clothes on my and got some horrible sleep. So I got on the next train to Copenhagen and guess what… Yup, missed another train! And this was the last leg to Stockholm. Well I found the train and was kicked off because they said I needed some kind of reservation or something fake like that. So I grab my things and head for the tickets window and by the time I get there I miss the last train for Stockholm. I was so pissed that I was so close and yet again missed another train. I was so pissed I decided to treat my self to a night in a hotel to wait for the next train to Stockholm which was in the morning.

I awake and board the train which was a smooth and surprising because in the middle of the ride the train stops and boards a ferry! I was amazed, the train pulled right into the ferry and I got a chance to go out side for a half hour and enjoy the Nordic air. Afterwards the ferry docked and the train continued onto Stockholm which was a short and pleasant ride. Arriving at the station my entire body was ecstatic, after three days of traveling and going non stop from Rome to Stockholm I had finally made it… Or so I thought.

There was still a few more legs of this pilgrimage to go. I had to look for the Tunnelbana, which is there name for the subway, and take the red line to Mörby Cantrum and get off at Tekniska Högskolan.
From there find a bus stop, that I must have passed 5 times before I found out that it was in the middle of the street. Bus #639 to Hallstavick was the second part of this trek through Sweden and the subway and the bus so far took about three hours to finally arrive into Hallstavick. To my surprise guess what had happened again! Yup, missed the #642 bus to Herrang by a mere minute. I got there just in time to see it full of young people with bags no doubt heading to the same destination I was. So I wait about two hours until finally the next bus arrived. Yet again fate deciders to play with me such cruel ways, because the bus ride ended up being about ten minutes! I was so close and I didn’t even know, I should have just walked!

But finally I had made it, after missed trains and buses. Sleeping in stations and struggling with wearing the same stinky clothing for three days straight, I had finally made it to the lindy hop worlds most cherished meeting place since the Savoy Ballroom, Herrang Dance Camp.