Thursday, March 24, 2011


Last Friday, I received some really great news from a college here in Norway.  I have been accepted at BI: Norwegian School of Business Management, for the Fall 2011 Semester.  Most likely, this will be the school where I will complete my higher education.

Check out some of the pictures!

The school is located in Oslo, and Ida and I have been looking for apartments around the area.

With a student visa, I can stay in Norway for as long as my education takes to complete.  This was wonderful news to receive considering that Ida and I have had to follow the 90 days laws of vacation every time that I am in her home country.  It will be nice to see what a Norwegian Christmas is like, and also the 17th of May Independence Day that they have.

We are very excited for the news!!!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Pieces and Plans

Hello to all of my faithful readers.

At first glance, it would seem that this post is simply "filler" because of the lack of exciting content....but just keep reading (or just skip to the bottom) and read a big surprise and some good news!

But first, some smaller news.

I have completed another puzzle, this time it took me about 3 days, and it is 499 pieces.  Ida and I have no idea where the last piece is...but anyway, feel free to click on the image to enlarge it.  This is a picture of Segovia, Spain.

Yesterday, Ida was closing the hood to the Ford Fiesta, and a funny thing decided to happen, the front emblem just fell off.  She wasn't amused at the time, but the roomates and I had a good laugh about it after she had left for school.

It now sits on our coffee table.  I am thinking of re-attaching it once the weather is more agreeable for adhesives.

In other news, Ida and I have purchased my plane ticket back to the States and also back to Norway.  So I will be home between May and August.  My plan is to get a job for the summer and earn tons of cash.  I have already started applying.  Ida's plan is a little different.....(here's the big news part).....

Ida is going to Madagascar in June!  can you believe that?!?  how cool is that?  She is going as part of a school trip.  Usually this kind of trip is reserved for freshmen, but there weren't enough people signed up, so she was accepted and has registered and everything.  She is going to MADAGASCAR!

She will be frolicking with the Lemurs in no time.  

anyway, that's all the news for now.  I will post more as the events unfold.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

VM2011 Part 2

On Sunday, Ida, Christian, Silvano, and I went back to Holmenkollen for the final day of VM2011.  On this day, there was the Men's 50km Cross-Country.  Norway took GOLD! and we were there right in the heat of it.  But first, the Journey to HolmenKollen....

I've never seen so many Norwegians trying to get onto a train in my time here.  I felt like I had stepped out of Europe, and landed in the business district of Tokyo.

We found a nice photo opportunity at the crest of a hill near the halfway point of where we were walking.

I have no idea what I am squinting at...but surely it was some kind of scandinavian absurdity.

Christian knew of a spot where we could watch the event....once we got there, we figured out that we weren't the only ones who knew about this place.

Of course, we made ourselves at home in the snow and hunkered down to watch the event.

The skiing started about one hour later. and The crowd moved from one side of the hill to the other to watch and yell out "Heia"  (which sounds like "Hi-Yah" to an English speaker)  it is their way of saying "Let's Go!" and "Hooray" at the same time.

Ida and I had been commissioned to find a nearby bathroom so that we would know where to go if nature calls....we took this photo right before we left, in the case that we didn't return from the Norwegian Woods.

When the racer who was in first place position had reached 40km, we quickly moved our group to another large area, where they had a big-screen and people could see the finish of the race.  It was PACKED!

That big empty spot towards the right-hand side is where the little kids where sliding down the hill and tripping over each other.

Anyway, This is the spot where we watched Peter Northug (who is only 8 months older than me) take First place!  the crowd was crazy and singing songs and blowing horns and dancing and kissing, and it was fantastic!  That was how we ended Sunday.

Monday came, and Ida and I decided that it was time for me to give skiing a try.  I hadn't been skiing since I was about 8 years old, and I had my doubts....which were confirmed, after I fell down about 3 times.

But after a while, I found my balance and a rhythm to the whole process, and I made some good progress.  I still can't stop, turn, or go down hills, but I feel like I accomplished something.

That's all for now!  I will blog more in the future.

Oh, and Ida and I finished the series "LOST"  and neither one of us can recommend it.  It had a really weak ending that you could predict by season 3.  At least our real world experiences are a million times better than anything hollywood can pump out.

I will keep you all posted.


I know, I know, this is all LONG overdue.... but I think that you will find that the contents was worth the wait.

Alright, so as you faithful readers already know, I went to the opening ceremonies of the World Cup of Skiing in Oslo....and now, I am proud to report that I even attended some of the events.  And they were Awesome!

Silvano, Lise-Lotte, and myself attended the women's 40km cross-country skiing event on Saturday....and as the athlete's were warming up and taking practice laps, guess who decided to show up?  None other than the Crown Prince of Norway, Prince Haakon.

So here's the deal with Crown Prince Haakon.  He is very intelligent, he is next in line to become King of Norway, He has a Masters Degree in Developmental Studies, and he travels around making foundations to help countries and people in need.  Basically, he spreads love and peace wherever he goes, and he's an overall great human being.  what more could you ask for in a Crown Prince?

He loves to interact and show that he is not above the average person, so walking around saying hello to people is quite common.

He is married, (sorry girls) and has two children.  and while I felt quite honored that he was around and said hello to me, I found out later that Christian (Ida's Brother) had not only saw the Crown Prince that day, but actually had a conversation with him.  Already, Ida's older brother is trying to out do me.  I don't have a prayer.

Anyway, On with the Event, the Women's 40km Cross-Country.

I got some pretty good shots, but the real event was the interactions between the fans.  I saw Finnish people, Norwegians, Swedes, and even some crazy French people decided to show up and have a picnic.

Norway took First Place (was there any doubt?)  and they played Queen's "We Are the Champions" over the loudspeakers.

Next, we were on our way to see the Men's Team Long Jump, when we happened to see this...

Yes, that is a Reindeer, and Yes, it looks like some kind of Norwegian version of the "I Dream of Genie" woman is holding it.  Apparently, she makes appearances in order to gain notoriety and hands out business cards.  She will make appearances with her Reindeer (plural) to your event, if the price is right.

On with the Jumping!

We didn't want to buy tickets because the prices were ridiculously high, so we positioned ourselves so that we could see the event from afar.  Well, then a guy comes up to us and says, "Do you need a ticket?" and then (no joke) hands me a perfectly good ticket, and I got right into the event.  The photos turned out pretty well.

And here is a close-up of that same photo, so you might be able to actually spot the Jumper, and appreciate the HUGE-ness of the big hill.

Norway took the Silver Medal in this event, but the real spectacle was that the wind was very high when the second round was to take place.  So the judges had to cancel the second round and just judge solely on the First Round.  Which means all of those people who paid full price for tickets, got only HALF of an event.  They were drunk and angry.  And it was very funny to me.

I did get a photo opportunity with Fnugg and Ull, the two mascots for the whole Skiing event.

That marked the end of our day on Saturday....But wait, I have one more surprise for you.

Silvano and Lise-Lotte specially ordered skiing boots (in my 48.5 Euro sized foot)  and got me a brand new pair of cross-country skis.  Who could ask for anything more?  Needless to say, I was surprised, excited, and completely blown-away by such a generous gift.

COMING SOON:  Part 2 of VM2011