It’s mid-afternoon in Perth, and I’m back in my room with the fan on maximum rotation trying to cool down after an interesting and busy day.
I started the day off with a coffee, a smoked salmon baguette, and an apple strudel at a Swedish cafe.
Even in Perth, there’s a little bit of Sweden, it seems. Well, more than a little bit; quite a lot actually, as there are fifteen locations across Perth where you’ll find a “Miss Maud” eating house. There are sandwich shops, pastry shops, coffee shops, and even a “Swedish Hotel” on the corner of Pier and Murray Streets.
According to the Miss Maud website, Miss Maud came to Australian in 1971 where she…
fell in love with the sunny disposition of the people, the long golden beaches, not to mention the wonderful weather.
But, she then goes on to say…
But how I missed the warm, inviting restaurants and quaint little sidewalk cafés of Sweden. And never more, than when my mother arrived from Stockholm for a visit.Where could I take her for a nice lunch or a splendid afternoon tea? I yearned for rich Swedish coffee and traditional open-faced Swedish sandwiches like the Shrimp Boat and Gangplank. Back then my mother and I had to settle for a counter meal at the local pub. Not quite where a couple of ladies would go to enjoy each other’s company. I decided it was time to bring a little taste of Sweden to Perth.In 1971 “Miss Maud” was born.
Forty years later and I’m not sure Miss Maud’s remains a “little bit of Sweden” in Perth. At the coffee shop this morning I noticed a Princesstorta and even a Queen Silvia Cake, and there were smoked salmon and prawn baguettes, but pretty much everything else seemed pretty “mod oz” to me.
But the business remains very successful. In fact, a colleague argued to me yesterday the case Miss Maud was the reason why there isn’t a Starbucks in Perth. He told me Starbucks did the maths and decided Miss Maud and Dome and a few others pretty much had the coffee market in Perth sewn up, and so haven’t bothered to open an outlet here. Praise The Lord!
After breakfast I wandered around for a while, and then listened to my favourite tech podcast, TWIG, before catching the ferry down to Fremantle. I had some lunch, I bought a shirt, looked in some shop windows, I looked around the Maritime Museum, a replica of The Endeavour, went to the beach, checked out a few tourist information places, and generally had a very pleasant time.
Even though this visit for Perth is for work, today felt very much like a holiday, I must admit. Happy New Year!