Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Our Time in Norway

We arrived in Oslo Thursday, August 13 dazed and exhausted from our red-eye flight to Stockholm, (where our peanut butter was captured by an unfriendly customs official) and the nine hour time jump.  When we landed in Norway, a wonderful couple; Nils and Bogna, and their friend, Asmund, (our new dear friends) were there to meet us with a van to take all of us and our luggage to their home twenty minutes away.  
Norwegian countryside
After settling in and visiting, we ate a scrumptious chicken soup followed by a dessert of hot rice and blueberry sauce.  Then we took our satisfied stomachs to bed and slept in until. . . well late, really late.  We ate a brunch of bread, cheese, sliced meats, eggs and a Norwegian “tortilla” called Lumpa wrapped around a hot dog.  We practiced for a performance on Saturday after brunch.  
Our scrumptious brunch!

Later that afternoon, Kenneth, Lisa, Ericka and the girls walked to a museum to see old, historic Norwegian houses which were moved from their original properties.  
Grass us always greener on the neighbor's roof!
Some of the old houses.
A few times each year, these houses are open to the public and people reenact past traditions by making bread, crafts and even butchering hogs.  Many of the house roofs were built to have grass grow on them. We also picked wild blueberries and raspberries— Berry Good!  

For dinner friday night, we had a special treat of fresh salmon, carrots and potatoes.  Nils grew up in the fishing region of Norway and he knows how to find the freshest fish in the store.  Norway is a beautiful country and many of the trees and plants are similar to those in Oregon.  The weather in Oslo was warm and sunny while we where there.

Saturday morning we ate another breakfast of bread, juice, cheese, meats and some extras like liver pate and caviar.  The caviar comes in a tube like toothpaste and has tomato mixed in - actually quite good especially with a squeeze of mayonnaise on top.  Nils showed Chris the way he likes to eat liver with beets on top.  (If you hadn’t noticed, we spent much time talking and eating around the table)

Nils and Bogna’s son Daniel came home from a music festival where he was working to meet us.  He spent a few months in the Florence area working at an organic farm there and the boys and girls enjoyed playing soccer with him.  

When we first Skyped with our hosts, they asked if we would like to do a concert while we were in Norway.  So Saturday afternoon we drove a few miles away to a nice area with by a river to play for the opening of a cafeteria (in Norsk) called Coffee Too. This dinner was also a thank you for people who raised money for a Kenyan man our hosts knew (he raised money to help improve the water in his village).  The lady who manages/owns the eatery loaned us her fiddle because we only brought one.  The people enjoyed our sharing time but we could have used more practice and maybe more sleep too.  They must have heard we love food because they served us an early dinner of various salads, bread and meat (which we grilled ourselves).  Lucas, the Kenyan man came back to the house and visited afterwards.  

Later, some of us rode to a store with Bogna.  Lisa bought some of the caviar and special Norwegian brown cheese to take with us to Poland.  On the way home, we stopped at the house where the Norwegian constitution was signed in 1814.  We were too late to tour inside, but we snapped photos by some statues there.  
The girls helped make a Polish dessert (Bogna is Polish) which they named rice cream because it is made from rice, whipped cream and currant sauce.  We also finished up some rhubarb cake and ice cream.  

Sunday morning, Asmund (the friend who picked us up at the airport) arrived with his van and we left for the airport.  We said goodbye to the guys, but Bogna stayed to help us check in.

We are thankful the Lord provided not only a place for our family to stay in Oslo, but also an encouraging time of sharing stories, meals and His love through our fellow believers in Norway.