Invited by my wife’s employers we spent the day at Parken Zoo, a highly original amusement park outside Eskilstuna, an hour and a half by car from my country seat. Originally a Folkets Park (People’s Park) established by the victorious early 20th century Labour movement, it has a great big stage, two dance halls, much greenery and loads of bronze sculpture, including a bust of Hjalmar Branting right at the entrance. Since that time, it has also acquired a full complement of really tacky fairground attractions and sprouted a zoo to one side. The zoo specialises in threatened and unusual species: I could spend days there with the marabou storks, flamingoes, Komodo dragons, meerkats and tapirs.
One of the rides was unbelievably psychedelic. I find that the crappy camera in my handheld computer actually enhances the visual effect of this day-glo monstrosity. Fear and loathing in Eskilstuna! If you have a firm grip on reality or don’t mind losing whatever grip you have, see below the fold.