Foreigners told me what they find to be typical Norwegian. Now I tell you the truth.
How to destroy myths about Norwegians!
- All Norwegians love skiing. Partly true. Some Norwegians do not like skiing, some don’t even have skies and go to Spain for their winter vacation. Some Norwegians are clumsy and can’t make it down a hill without falling on their ass at least twice. Too many Norwegians also have old skies in the cellar that they don’t use, and know nothing about how to find the best ski vax.
Somebody has some ski vax that works? I never removed the one from last year. :/
- All Norwegians go to their cabins at weekends. Partly true. Some Norwegians do not have cabins and are envious of those having one. Some of us hate small cabins because of traumatized child hood having to spend all holidays in a small and claustrophobic “hytte” with too much family, too many lonely nights with yatzy and solitaire card game (kabal) and no water, oven or heat.
- Norwegians love their dogs more than their friends and family. Partly true. We do really love pets here and spend much time with them. But do you see many Norwegians with dogs in Grünerløkka? Many of us are urban citizens and we do not carry small dogs around or even like them! Some of us are even scared of dogs, and jump when we see one big dog barking at us.
- Norwegians are difficult to get to know. Not true. This is mostly just shyness. In this cold and desolated country nobody taught us how to socialize and we do not know what to say in buses, elevators and railway stations like Oslo S. Frankly, most of us would be happy to talk with you and to make new friends. Teach us how!
- It is all about utepils. True. If you want to live the Norwegian way, you should really try to drink beer outside in early spring and late autumn. Others would freeze to death, but we just bring some warm jackets and blankets and stick to the heaters. (varmelamper.) Foto under: Lofotposten.
- The julebord (Christmas party at work) is really important. It is actually important. Here is a chance to really get to know your colleagues, because here we will drink wine and beer, forget our shyness and end up kissing the boss or dancing on the table. Just do not mention this next Monday, then everybody will be back to normal and set up a stone face if you try to catch up the chat you had at 0200 with them Saturday night. The colleagues that did not attend the Christmas party will be so ashamed they will not even show up Monday morning.
- All Norwegians love May 17. and can’t wait to wear their national costumes and wave at the King. Frankly not true at all. This is the day parents with small kids are so exhausted in the end of the day, they just want to sleep. This is because they had to spend a lot of time ironing costume (bunad) shirts, they had to bake cakes for the school events, school band and also do voluntary work for the cafe and fishpond. The bunad is too warm and itches, the weather is never as good as forecasted, the kids ask for too many ice-creams and hot dogs and the parents do not find their flags and have to buy new ones the last second. Adults with grown up kids enjoy having some free time at last, and go to the countryside to relax and avoid the 17. mai- noise or do shopping in Sweden.
This flag is heavy. Puuh… Look forward to lie down. 🙁
- We have a lot of holidays. In what other country you have vinterferie, påskeferie, pinseferie, sommerferie, høstferie and juleferie for really many days and also enjoy long weekends (langhelger) abroad. But in fact there are also a lot of Norwegians sitting at work late Friday night and go back to do the rest of the work Sunday night like you. Some of those might actually just be afraid of spending too much time at home where they feel lonely and misplaced, but still…
- The midnight sun, the fish and the fjords: Frankly, some of us get a bit frightened when you ask us about this. It is because we, like you, never saw the fjords, experienced the midnight sun or visit Svalbard or the northern Norway and we are afraid we cannot give you the correct answer about when is the perfect date to see the northern light. We have to google it first or check with some friends who actually live there!
Searching for the northern light.
What kind of fish it this? Really don’t know.
- We are all rich because of the oil. Not true. We might have a good welfare system, but some of us are single parents struggling to pay our bills, some are ill or out of work and fight the Nav system, some cannot afford to go to the Canary Islands and Thailand this Christmas because they spent too much money on something else. Heard of Luxury trap? (Luksusfellen.) Lots of Norwegians are stuck there. Of course we still might seem a bit rich compared to you.
- Everything is expensive in Norway. Not true. You can buy cheap sausages at Narvesen «Pølsefest». At Burger King you get a burger for 20 kroner and an ice cream for 10 kroner, you have cheap beer in Grønland, and you can get good bargains at Lets deal and Groupon. Stores sell out T-shirts for 50 kroner. You can get furniture for free at Finn. If you need help you can always arrange a “dugnad.” That means you force all your friends to come and help you for free and serve some cheap wine and frozen pizza; Grandiosa.
If you still think Norway is expensive, go to Sweden and buy cheap groceries like we do!
Have a happy life in Norway!
ps; Ballons are cheap in Nille! 🙂