Thursday, August 5, 2010

Give me one second while I mentally disrobe you...


Mission accomplished! Yesterday I finally got my Semesterkort (semester card), which meant I could get my Studentkort (student card), equals Kevin finally acquired his Transport card (~70AUD) for 1 month of unlimited travel, as opposed to the 11AUD for a daily adult fare. In order to get this card, I've had to trek from college to university campus on 3 occasions, the path through which takes me through a derelict "nature strip" that alarmingly screams out "Gang Rape!!", got lost about 5 times (not in aforementioned gang rape nature strip), and spoke to about 20 different people to get to the right person. That said, the people who work for the student services centre are such lovely receptionists. Helpful, ever so polite, and of course painfully beautiful. Why can't Australian government services be like that? "Hi. Can I get a student card, a campus map and a side serving of model please? Actually, can I supersize that?"

That's the thing about these Norwegians. They're so polite. None of this "Oh moy gawd, it's so farkin hot in this shithole Moira..." business. Instead, it's all [read in foreign but aristocratic accent]: "Hello, how can I help you? Your semester card? Certainly, just one moment. Meanwhile, feel free to stare at my summer blue eyes." And here's the thing. Half the time I don't even know what they're saying because I'm too busy A) staring impolitely or B) refer to title of post.

Okay. Moving on from this whole superficial thing, I finally ventured into Oslo city with one of my Norwegian housemates to get my transport card. I don't think I've had enough time to form my thoughts or opinion of the city. There are certainly pockets of charming little streets selling the funkiest things (things I wish I could bring back to Melbourne). Then there's the dirtier side, the park with the "farkin derros" who seriously need to get a job, the Norwegians who break the stereotype I mentioned earlier about everyone looking like they have 2 PhD's stowed away in their bottom drawer. Then there's Grønland with all the immigrants (definitely going back there for food - besides, I need to return to get my student visa there). I guess my point is, so far I've only been exposed to the sheltered side of Oslo at Sogn. Sort of like spending a couple of days at Trinity College on steroids, and basing your opinions of Melbourne based solely on that. Yesterday's venture into the city demonstrated that:

1) Oslo is obsessed with 7-Eleven. There's a store every single corner!
2) Subway costs 70K ~ 13AUD. 10 Subways and you can buy yourself a microwave...
3) Oslo is much more diverse than I initially encountered. Really cool.
4) Norway actually has derros. Norwegians shit too? I thought you guys were designed so perfectly that you bypassed those menial human tasks...
5) Oslo/Norway isn't as big as I thought. Just today as we were wandering through the streets, my Norwegian housemate from Alta (Northern lights area) bumped into 3 sets of people he knew from back home. This was within a 5hr period. On the way home we bumped into one of the same ones again...
6) My Norwegian is improving significantly. I saw a sign at the Jernbanetorget (Oslo central station) which I understood completely (inner Zing moment) "Skal du reise med tog i sommer?" which means "Will you be traveling by train this summer?" Just you wait...Give me 6 months and I'll be answering that question in Norwegian with more than just "Ja".
7) It rains like mad here. It is summer here at the moment. SUMMER. Why is it raining?? I was drenched by the time I got home.

I don't know...I wonder what people think of Norway, especially those who've never been before?

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