Cultural auntie & hippo collector

You may be wondering how my craze for hippos came about? When I was in my late teens, I began to notice this strange animal. My first item was a bikini in blue with small hippos in turquoise and orange. Since then, I have collected quite a bit.

Today I have about a hundred in all possible sizes and materials, everything from the tiny one in lead to the life-size one in fiberglass that stands in my garden. There were many curious people on the street who suddenly one day saw a hovering blue hippopotamus being lifted by crane over the roof of the house.

I came to Varberg as a newly graduated teacher of Swedish and socially oriented subjects in the mid-80s and worked for several years at a junior high school, before leaving school life at the turn of the century to devote myself instead to hotels and service. Lasse, my lifelong friend, bought Hotell Gästis in 1987 and I have been part of that whole journey until today. Summer holidays and other holidays were spent on work in reception, cleaning, cooking, laundry, yes, everything that makes a hotel run. Lasse and I put colour and touch on interior design and style for a number of years and I can probably say that both Gästis and Havanna have become popular destinations and put Varberg on the map.

When Lasse handed over the hotels to his son Erik in 2018, I also began to scale back my involvement at Gästis and Havanna.

I came here to Södergatan 37 in 2014, a few days before Christmas Eve. I moved some 100 meters from a building that now houses the Jan Myrdal library. The idea was from the beginning that I would share my home with Myrdal’s books, but when Erik wanted to move, it fell into place that I took over his house. Pretty soon I settled in with my books, hippos, visual art, and all kinds of knick-knacks. Friends and acquaintances couldn’t understand that I was so newly moved in, as settled in as it looked here!

Now I face the exciting challenge of letting the Hippo splash in the water and thus try to make my little watering hole and oasis become a place to both come and return to.