Sweden

Comic about international travel hits the nail on the head about the most bizarre spa behaviors

You miss doing what in Russia?!

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Pikachu, Totoro, and more want to play. Don’t you want to play with them?

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Savoring one of the stinkiest foods in the world: Sweden’s surströmming

Japan is no stranger to fermented foods with, shall we say, “unique” aromas, so how would a group of unsuspecting Japanese writers deal with a rice bowl topped with the notoriously foul-smelling Swedish staple, surströmming?

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“The Moomins” was originally brought to Japan by spies

Thanks to years of espionage and international intrigue, Hattifatteners and Snufkin were first brought to Japan.

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Happy Fastlagen! IKEA brings a sweet piece of Sweden to Japan with all-you-can-eat dessert buffet

Swedish home furnishing company IKEA, as many of you are undoubtedly aware, has a huge presence around the world, and Japan is no exception. Thousands of us enjoy wandering around their gargantuan stores on the weekends, gazing at their pop furniture displays and homeware or wolfing down a serving of their Swedish meatballs at their cafeteria.

Well now, IKEA Japan has news that’s sure to please sweets lovers in particular — for a limited time, they’re be offering an all-you-can-eat “Sweets Buffet”, which includes some delightful-looking Swedish treats that we’re dying to try, for the very reasonable price of 499 yen (US$4.25)! Who wouldn’t be excited about sweet news like that?

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Japanese man crowned World’s Best Santa at 2014 Santa Winter Games

In the mining town of Gällivare, located in the Swedish section of Lapland, the contestants have gathered. These men and women gritted their teeth as they walked through the streets in their heavy boots on the morning of 22 November with the frosty wind biting at their quickly reddening cheeks.

Red cheeks would serve them well, however. As would eyes that twinkle and a round belly that shakes when they laugh like a bowlful of jelly, for these world warriors were here to determine who was the World’s Best Santa.

And so, when the blood was mopped up and visions of sugar plums danced through the heads of little ones, it was Japan’s very own Kohei Yamashita who emerged victorious bringing his nation its first ever World’s Best Santa title.

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