Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Night Bus

The night bus from Oslo is a good way to get home, except when the following happens:

1) Someone falls asleep right away and snores so the whole bus shakes
2) After two stops someone comes and ask to sit next to you, resulting in that you have to take one of you two heavy bags on your lap for hours
3) A group of young people who have been on the "like most exciting trip ever" comes on at Gardermoen, sit right behind you, and watch movies from their trip on the computer while
explaining and laughing - loudly.

Last night, all of the above happened.

Bitter? Nooooooo

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Suomi. Finland. Oslo.

Long time, no update. I can explain. I have been on vacation! One and a half week with lots of fun before it’s back to the books for a few months... So here is some of what I’ve been up to for the past week or so.

Last Sunday I moved from Tromsø, but took a “small” detour through Finland before ending up in my new home city Oslo. After Tromsø, the first stop was Kolari in Northern Finland, where I got to experience real winter for the first time this year. Somewhere between 20 and 30 degrees - minus. It was great. I have missed the winter so much this year. And when we asked the people in the hotel if there was an ATM in town, they told us that there was one a 4 km walk away. We optimistically started walking, the cold snow making the familiar squeaking noises for every step, and I have to say that 4 km seem a lot longer in the cold! When we finally found the centre, we also had to find a pub to defrost, and order a taxi back. Real winter cold is great (yes, I AM serious) but must be enjoyed in limited potions.

Rovaniemi, or Winterwonderland as I now like to call it, was almost as cold, and had lots of heavy snow on the trees with that beautiful glow to it that only 25 blue degrees can give. Surely, this kind of Christmas card is beautiful to look at from inside a warm kitchen, but it is even more fun to be out there experiencing it. Marjaana’s friend Jenni had a snowmobile that we just had to try out before we left. As they say, bad weather doesn’t exist, only bad clothes (well, it sounds much fancier in Norwegian, when it rhymes…). But as we got to borrow a lot of good clothes, we had no problems facing the cold. As we got out I thought that Jenni was going to drive us around with the snowmobile – but I was wrong; we got to drive ourselves! It was great, I felt so free, and like I was flying across the frozen lake – until I glanced down and realized I was going the amazing speed of 15 km/h! I felt a little bad, and got the thingy up to almost 30 km/h, but then it felt like it was taking off from the ice and I had to go back to a safe 15… But it was a lot of fun! In Rovaniemi I also found out that all the pool-playing skills I thought I’d picked up in Namibia had magically disappeared (or maybe they were just imagined in the first place…). And I got to meet Santa Claus! I had heard rumors that he actually comes from Rovaniemi, and after having seen his village, I am almost convinced. Even though he said something else every Christmas Eve he came to my house when I was a kid… This leaves me with a problematic question: Can Santa lie?

After two days in Rovaniemi, we got on the night train that would take us South to Helsinki, where I woke up the next morning. I got to do some shopping, sightseeing, sauna and hair dressing in the capital, and then went to Marjaana’s family’s summer house for a couple of days. It was a great place situated right by one of Finland’s many lakes, and a great place to relax! I even got to do my first skiing for the season!! It was only for a couple hundred meters, but still – it counts! Then we went back to Helsinki to have a party Saturday night. It was a great time, and after a couple of glasses of wine I kind of forgot that I would have to take an early plane the next day. And they had a lot of tasty shots at the bar we went to.. someone told me that everyone has to experience at least one hung-over flight, and I have now experienced mine. Well, to look at the positive side of it – you save a lot of money going through the tax free shop that way, because it isn’t even remotely tempting to stop by the alcohol section..

Well, after a great trip to Finland I have now spent two great days in Oslo. Yesterday I took a look at my new room, and started thinking about how I am going to decorate it.. That’s always fun! So tonight I’m going back home to get all my stuff – and then I will move to Oslo! Jippi!

Moi moi.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

I Miss Namibia

I finished my transcribing yesterday. That means it is now time to start writing the two first chapters of my thesis. Only it's not very easy to just start writing. Or better said; it's not only-only (the expression "bare-bare" comes in handy so often.. if anyone finds a better translation than Petter Solberg I would be very happy:) to start writing. So I have been sitting here trying to find information about Namibia online. So far it has only resulted in one thing: I miss Namibia. A lot.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Queen of Excuses

House work might be dangerous!
I decided to clean the whole appartment yesterday, so that it wouldn't be a lot of stress doing it right before I move.
Today I feel beat. Totally. Really tired and can barely keep my eyes open. Now; this could have several reasons; some possible ones being Saturday night party, a too optimistic effort at SATS, or just the simple fact that today is Monday. But I choose to blame it on the cleaning. I think that everything that could possibly be blamed on house work, should be.
In this case, I more spesifically blame it on the detergent, Salmiakk. I wanted to get the shower completely clean, and was really proud when I discovered a mix of cleaning detergants that actually worked (yes, I do admit that it is quite scary that I could feel so happy about a break through in the department of house cleaning. It will never happen again!), so I took my bucket of water and huge amounts of salmiakk into the shower, and stayed in that 1m x 1m space cleaning the walls and floor for 10 minutes. What I didn't think about is that Salmiakk is quite strong, and after the 10 minutes I felt really weird and dizzy...
So, I think that's why I forgot all my transcribing stuff at home this morning and have now spent 4 hours in the library doing - let's see - nothing!! So be aware of housework :)

Thursday, January 11, 2007


It isn't "only-only" to move from Tromsø to Oslo. Not on a student budget and without a car. But with some creative thinking and help from good friends, it doesn't have to be that expensive after all..

After sorting through my stuff and throwing away eveything I thought I wouldn't need or want anymore, I was left with two mighty heavy boxes ready to be shipped off from the post office. The biggest problem would be to get them the 500 meters from the appartment to the post office.

It turned out not to be such a big problem after all. After spending a few days thinking about how expensive it would be to take them in a taxi, I suddenly got an idea while shopping the other day: why not borrow one of ICA's wonderful shopping carts? So today Marjaana helped me, and we conqured all the challenges King Winter decided to present us with - snowy, icy, and bumpy roads - and the boxes are now at the post office safe and sound. Now I only have clothes, shoes, skis, and books left - and I have plans how to get them all down to the capital :)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

What NOT to do..

... when recording an interview:

Yesterday I finished transcribing one of the interviews. Today I was going to start a new one. Only I have now learned lesson 1 about recording: It might be an idea to put the recorder close to the interviewee, and not very close to oneself... This is hopeless to transcribe. My (fake) laughter is really loud in my ears (and the laughter hasn't gotten any better since yesterday), so I have to turn the volume way down to prevent myself from becoming deaf. Then all the response I can hear is mumble, mumble, mumble. Oh, but it is apparently some very "funny" mumbling, because it's interrupted by a (fake) laughter quite frequently. Ouch.

And double ouch; I didn't know that I sound just like Janice in Friends!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

The Doubtful Joys of Transcribing

1. I get to hear how bad my fake laughter really sounds... (I have to work on that)
2. I have confirmed that I have the memory span of a goldfish (seriously, I can remember a sequence of like 5 words max. This takes time!)
3. I have discovered that Namlish is even more difficult to understand on tape than live
4. I understand that I have to drastically cut down on my use of the terms "oh really?", "oh?", "oh yeah?", and "aha!"

Monday, January 08, 2007

New Year. New Possibilities.

So, 2007 eh? I can't really believe it. I started the year up North in Tromsø, and had a nice New Year's celebration with Rachel, Marjaana, and Panama. Just as I suspected, New Year's in Tromsø with all the fireworks lighting up the Mørketid sky was quite fantastic to see, and also a big 2006 made out of burning candles up in the mountainside under the Fjellheis that magically changed into 2007 at midnight was great. Then we danced the new year in at Cirka, which was fun!

I think, and I hope, that 2007 is going to be a good year. You can never tell the future, I guess, but I do know that this year is going to be one full of changes and travelling for me. I start of by going to Finland for a week in January, which I think will be great. Then I am moving to Oslo to work on the last semester of my thesis. It will be quite strange and sad to leave Tromsø, but I am also excited about living in the "big city".

And then probably more changes.. This spring is hopefully my last semester as a student, which means that 2007 will be the year that I will probably have to get a real job. Scary scary. I was thinking that somewhere along all these year of studying I would figure out what I want to do when I "grow up", but that hasn't happened.. So it is going to be quite exciting to see where I am when September comes. My big plan is to move abroad and learn a new language - french mybe - and take some time off from studying and committments. That is my plan right now. But as we all know - plans change. Especially mine. That's what's so exciting about the future :)