Monday, August 15, 2011

Skog og Fjord (forest and...fjord)

A few days ago these French people I know (one who lives with me and two female friends who are French) plus the Greek guy I also live with went for a walk through the woods on the NW end of campus. We were going towards the lake nearby, which is polluted by agricultural runoff; but it didn't turn out to be as interesting as the journey there. For example, it looks like this in the forest:

I think it's used by the Forestry Dept. for Silviculture studies and Forest Ecology. It's one of the healthiest forests I've ever seen. The forest floor is so spongy I can easily go barefoot. I was in awe. It was almost silent except for a very low hum of cars from the highway. I think that this forest will be a refuge of sorts for me this year and next year--a place to come and relax and remember what I'm studying for. Who.

I had a good time with the Frenchies and the Greek too. I said to one of them on the way out "I love you French people!" and he laughed. They are so nice. At least these are. There's so many accents around me I'm going to sound funny soon.

On Saturday, the next day I went with Harald, Ninni, Unni, her daughter and her daughter's friend, and of course the dog, all piled into Harald's boat on the Oslo Fjord. It seemed to struggle with so many passengers, but we managed to go quite a ways. We saw the city of Oslo's new opera house:

You can walk onto the roof! We also saw a lot of beautiful islands on the way, like this one:

And here we are on the struggling yet reliable boat:

Unni and I, and now Harald and Ninni:

At one point we reached a small cove next to an island, where Unni told me there were dolphins once who swam with the people there. Unni's daughter, Lill Nora, asked around if anyone would swim with her. I was not really feeling good about swimming because it was already kind of cold when it was cloudy, which it was intermittently throughout the day. But, I thought hey, this is Norway! Do as the Norskies do. As they say. So, to prove myself as a half-ish Norwegian decendant I jumped in the fjord and even snorkeled for 30 minutes:

Picture taken with Lill Nora's underwater camera. This is also from her camera--see if you can spot the crab:

Speaking of crabs, later on Lill Nora and her friend found a dead crab on the beach, and like the sweet girls they are, they made quite the elegant burial site for the little guy:

Unni said it was like watching them revert back to childhood--they are both twelve but have been straddling that line between adult and child lately. This day was about childhood for them:

They were so serious about it. It was wonderful. They named the crab Ludvig the 5th for some reason.

This wonderful day was finished with a delicious dinner and a walk with Unni at sunset with the dog, Selena. The sunset was nice and there was a full moon but I didn't get the moon, just the sunset:

Tomorrow is my first class. With great weekends like these I think I'll deal with studying just fine!


  1. Really nice forest. I know that you're going to love it. I think I love it, too.

    Your swimming adventure sounds fun, a bit colder than I might like but okay for someone who is three-eighths Norski. I'm only a quarter.

    And very nice sunset, too. It's a little different than ones in Michigan, but very respectably Scandinavian.

  2. That forest looks amazing! It sounds like this whole Norway thing is working out so far. :-)