Archive for August, 2008

The crayfish party

August 23, 2008

I’m reading the latest issue of Tatler in bed and even there Tom Parker Bowles writes about crayfish so I thought it’s about time I do the same. It is the Season or as we call it in Sweden: the Crayfish Premier.

It’s August and Swedes eat crayfish. We have lots of parties dedicated to the crayfish, we drink so much herb flavoured snaps (not schnaps), which is so strong your chest burns, we drink it after singing a snaps song and then knock it back again, and again and again…

This is a very important tradition in Sweden and it has to do with fishermen being able to fish crayfish in Sweden. Though these days most of the crayfish we eat in Sweden are from America or Kina, but we do love our own Swedish crayfish of course, as everything Swedish is always the best.

A typical Swedish crayfish party will take place outside in the garden, there will be a lot of decorations such as lanterns and candles and the very typical ‘happy full moon lantern’ will smile over all the guests. There will be nice weather but you will of course have a plan B in case it rains.

Before the party starts you will put on your crayfish bib and matching crayfish hat. You might think you don’t want to ruin your outfit but trust me you will look silly without these fine accessorises, you will be the outcast of the party and no one will talk to you.

You can have your crayfish party with friends, neighbours, work colleagues, family etc. Invite who ever you like and count yourself lucky to be invited to a Swedish crayfish party. It’s a party you don’t want to miss.

I’m looking at my diary and realise I’m quite busy the next couple of weeks. I have already three crayfish parties scheduled and I’m sure there will be more to come.

One is with the girls on a court yard in the city, one is at my friend’s country house out in the woods somewhere and the third one is at a bigger country house next to a lake. Oh bliss! I quite can’t wait.

When I was living in London crayfish parties of course became one of those important Swedish traditions I needed to implement in to my British life. And what parties we had! Every year I had Swedes flown in to mix with the Brits at the party of the year: The Clapham Common Crayfish Party.

For a Swede living in England you travel to IKEA for your crayfish and snaps. Every year for the crayfish premier IKEA sell crayfish, snaps, hats, bibs and the important crayfish moon. I love IKEA for understanding how important this is and how loyal they are to the Swedish exiles.

I wonder if IKEA Croydon is wondering where I am this year.