Yesterday consisted of hauling the remains of remains to the second-hand shop...those random purchases we made while here, stuff that was useful but we had no space for in the luggage, stuff that wasn't very useful (yup, this guy was brought back to his original home!) And after we lugged our stuff to the donation room, out of habit, I poked around the kitchen section of the second-hand shop, on the look out for a cheese slicer.
I don't know if these are typical in the States or not, since we had one at our house growing up (but my mom is Swedish). But they are the best tool! The family I nannyed for had a dozen in their kitchen drawers alone. I wanted to bring a few back, just in case they are tough to find, so for the last several weeks, I have been looking for a few cheap ones to slide into the checked baggage.
No luck. I can NEVER find these at second-hand shops, which must mean Swedes never donate cheese slicers. Often, you will find whole, beautiful sets of Rörstrand dishes, entire sets of silverware, or lovely Kosta Boda glassware in the city mission store, but I have never seen a simple plastic-handled cheese slicer, much less the nice wood-handled ones! Relatives pass on, and their heirs go through the household, deciding what to keep and what to donate: 'The Höganäs pottery goes to Myrorna, but let's hang on to Mormor's cheese slicers.' ?!?
Stu has coveted the Viking cheese slicer since we saw them in the tourist shops in Gamla Stan, but we never managed to buy one. Not to mention they cost more like $30. His little horns would probably bend trying to get through a hunk of Vermont White Cheddar anyway.
So you have to buy them new. No biggie. I picked up a generic one up for a few dollars at a Öob. Nothing special. But it is the strangest phenomenon that with all the other kitchen crap you can find there, I have never spotted the elusive Swedish cheese slicer in a second-hand shop. Let's hope US Ikea has a source!