I flew to Kiruna earlier today. For those of you who do not know where it is, I recommend you look at a map. This is as north as it gets in Sweden. I got here at 12:45, had a working lunch from 13:30 to 14:30, after which I was going to visit Esrange Space Centre. I got back at the Scandic Ferrum at 17:30, which meant that I had an hour before leaving for a working dinner.
I was decided to visit at least one coffee shop in Kiruna so here I go in the city looking for one. I am here because of work, so I am wearing a suit and nice leather shoes. The problem is that the city is covered with snow and ice. That doesn’t make for a fun walk in downtown Kiruna. Thankfully this is not a big city and even though not many coffee shops are open at this time of the day in Kiruna I found Cafe Oscar after 10 minutes. The place is nice, with little white tables and decoration that reminds me more of a summer cottage than a cafe in Northern Sweden. Only 3 tables are occupied: one by an older sami woman; one by two young women who are talking very quietly; and a last one by a bunch of very loud guys.
At that moment I was very happy I found a coffee shop open in Kiruna. So with a big smile on my face I walk to the counter, behind which stand two young girls. Can I have a cappuccino, I ask. The only reaction I get is a blank look. At first I was thinking that maybe they didn’t speak English – or were surprised to hear English – so I asked again if I could have a cappuccino. The two girls looked at me again and then looked at the coffee machine. The coffee shop closes in 20 minutes but it is obvious that the machine has been cleaned and the girls have no intention at all to make me a cappuccino. In any other cafe I would have been irritated. But I am happy to be in Kiruna so I asked for a regular coffee. It will be 20 crowns, the girl said, and the coffee is on the table over there.
Not the most pleasant coffee shop experience. But I will come back. Earlier in the day. Or maybe in the summer. And I am sure Cafe Oscar will be great.
Cafe’ Oscar, Föreningsgatan 15, 981 32 Kiruna