As I headed up to Kirkenes on Monday to hold lectures for secondary school students about Operasjon Dagsverk, I was very curious about two things..
1. What could I possibly do for three whole days + an evening in Kirkenes??
2. Would I be able to hold a lecture about Nepal for a bunch of people without fainting or forget everything I was supposed to say?
After having spent a few hours in Kirkenes on my way to and from Murmansk a few weeks ago, I have said that the only thing that could make me concider living there was if I was very newly married or desperately in love. This tiny city where a Latte is still presented as a "nyhet" and every cafe seems to be closed after 9 pm (exept Ritz, which apparently is the place to be) just didn't seem like the place for me. Spending three days there was not really on top of my priority list. But things change. Kirkenes is also a town where the winter comes early (yes, I count that as a positive thing!). It is the place where I first saw a submarine. And it is a place very close to Finland, which means I had the opportunity to stock up on my favorite chips (with dill). It is basically a very koselig little town. And last but not least; it is the home of a lot of really nice people! I met so many nice people during these three days, and it really confirmed my opinion that: it is not the place that is important. It's the people. I was almost sad to leave Kirkenes last night!
The other issue was the speaking-in-front-of-a-lot-of-people-about-a-topic-that-I-don't-know-too-well issue. Scary. Definitely scary. Monday night I considered locking myself in some room in Tromsø airport, and accidentaly miss my plane. But I didn't. I had put too much work into holding presentations for our poor mirror to chicken out now! And after feeling uncomfortably many nerves on Tuesday morning, I held my first presentation - and found out that it was actually kind of fun!!
And last night, as I went on the plane in Kirkenes, I felt the great, familiar smell of winter. It was great. Can't wait till King Winter decideds to make an apperance in Tromsø too :)