24th December, 2009 – Norway.
So this time last year I was in Australia on my way to the Airport to leave my home country. And spend a year abroad. With the way things worked out, I ended up staying longer. And am now in Norway – much to my mothers dismay.
I wake up early-ish and have a coffee and contemplate the year that’s gone by – the people, friends, places, festivals and everything that has happened. I’m just glad I can still get to Europe easily from London.
After breakfast Ash, Ally and myself head off down the road to the church for a christmas day service. We couldn’t understand a word they were saying, and we tried to sing. But we were a hit apparently. I give props out to the girls where there wearing dresses and heels – when the paths were icy as. Well done for not breaking a neck.
We head back to the house and get ready for christmas festivities in Norway. Back in Australia things are different to most of the world – we do all the xmas stuff on christmas day. Here its on the eve like pretty much everywhere else. So we are going to Viv’s uncles house to have dinner.
We get taken there by her uncle and end up at a really nice home with snow all over the ground. The inside of the house is warm and cosy. And we take a seat whilst dinner is being prepared.
We get given some aquavit (strong potato spirit) in these little shot glass looking things. So I say to the gang ‘are we meant to shot it?’ and then I tilt the head back. And get the burning sensation down my throat. Apparently we sip it not shot it. Oh well. We also have a festive yule brew and yule soda drink that is awesome.
The dinner is served and it’s absolutely delicious. Seriously one of the best feasts I have had. Very meat orientated with lamb ribs, pork ribs, and a sausage looking thing served with potato and sauerkraut. It goes down well and we’re all full.
Then about 5 minutes later a second course comes out – same thing again. I demolish another plate. And thank god I can eat a fair bit. Absolutely amazing. We then have some cake for dessert and a few yule beer (called juleol). And then wait to go over to another house for christmas gifts as we’re shown some photos of them hiking through the surrounding mountains.
At the next house, we missed Santa by a few minutes, but then get an absolute shock by the amount of presents that are under the tree. Heaps is an understatement.
We sit back and watch the presents being handed out. And we’re all pretty gob smacked and amazed that they actually went to the effort of getting us presents.
After all the presents are open its time to get stuck into more desserts. A whole table full of cakes and biscuits. Seriously the Norwegians know how to do christmas!
We sit around and chill out, check some emails and lounge about with a gutful before we get taken back to viv’s and laurens place. One the way we see some wild deer roaming about (sadly the photo turned out dark).
Back at vivs and lauren’s the girls decide to open their norwegian gifts and then wait til tomorrow to do the Aussie ones. We don’t stay up late – we’re all pretty famished from the feast that got laid on.
On a side note, I have to say thanks heaps to Viv’s family. Seriously the kindness, gestures and taking us in on a family day is incredible. It was an awesome experience. Thanks for letting us be apart of it!