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