We spent a couple of nights in Trelleborg, having a general potter about. It is a nice town with lovely parks and sculptures and, we were excited to read, the only avenue of palm trees in Sweden. We walked along said avenue – I think it is far to say that palm trees don’t exactly thrive this far north.
Our only problem with Trelleborg, and indeed the whole coast east to Ystad, was the smell. Not the salty tang that you usually (hopefully!) associate with the coast. No, this was more over-cooked brussel sprouts with undertones of rotting seaweed and a top note of stinky cheese. I’m sure you get used to it if you live here, but to outsiders the smell is really rather overpowering and we had to cut a couple of beach walks short when we couldn’t stand it any more.
We were slightly confused by Ystad. Fans will know this as the home town of Wallander and we were expecting a hotbed of crime – murder, terrorism, that sort of thing. Well, we are not sure what Wallander actually does with himself – in fact, the risk of crime seems to be so low that we didn’t see a single bike locked up and we also spotted a pushchair left outside a cafe with a camera bag sitting on the seat. Maybe the residents have more dangerous crimes to be afraid of to bother worrying about petty things like theft?
It was a lovely town with wide cobbled pedestrian streets flanked by quiet lanes with beautiful cottages. There was an international food market in the park – the UK was represented by Cheddar and biscuits and Australia was represented by The Australian BBQ Company. No clichés there then.
We did recognise a couple of places from Wallander episodes – the bank on the main square where some sort of convoluted terrorism plot was being played out and the silos in the harbour where something happened involving Svartman and a car (we can’t remember the details!). We passed on the opportunity to do a Wallander tour in a vintage fire engine though – we’re not that geeky.