Norway Comparative

A view down Karl Johann street

I still have to do my Germany Comparative but I thought I would do Norway while it is still fresh in my mind.  As you know, I love Norway.  I love the people and the country.  Of course the mountainous, spacious, forested fjordland shares a lot in common with British Columbia, so of course I love that.  I love nature and I am afterall a biologist.  It is also great to have a friend here whom I have known for such a long time.

Cathrine and her son Christoffer

I have always liked the people in Norway.  They are approachable, open-minded and kind.  The ones I have met are very accepting and embracing of all people regardless of where they are from.  And you see that in Oslo.  It is filled with all sorts of nationalities.  Despite recent occurrences, which is exceptionally odd, people choose to immigrate to Norway because they too share that open-minded accepting attitude.

Me with Cathrine's two lovely children, Christoffer and Emilie

No place is perfect though and you can’t assume everyone will be the same.  But they are warm people.  Oslo is both a modern city and a city with a history.  Norway is progressive and constantly inventing and adding to itself.  It is a wealthy country because of the oil and gas and as such is the most expensive place I have visited.  It is known to be so expensive.  As a visitor it far surpasses the cost of Australia.  This is the biggest draw back from a visiting standpoint.  It would be different if you lived here because you would be paid accordingly, but for visiting it is a shocker.  One Canadian dollar is about 5.5 Norwegian Krone.  A glass of wine in a restaurant runs about 70 krone.  So quick math, that’s about $13.  I had a small lunch out and it came to $45.  Everything is like that.  So that is tough and you have to budget accordingly.

The cutest little electric car. This parking lot was just full of them.

As such, Norwegians do live their lives more conservatively so some degree.  They take their lunch to work.  They go out on special occassions instead of all the time.  And they spend a lot of time outdoors.  They love the outdoors and there is lots of the outdoors to take advantage of.  Parks, mountains, hiking, ocean, boating, skiing and on and on.  If you can think of it, you will likely find it.  I also love the Norwegian style.  Norway and Sweden are a lot alike but the people are different.  I can’t say exactly how but they are.  I still find Sweden, as I did in 1988, to be a bit more Americanized than Norway.  You just have to visit for yourself to perhaps know what I mean.  For those who don’t like the temperate conifer forest however, you might find the nature boring.  But not me.  So if healthy, active, resourceful, open-minded, kind, fun people are your thing, Norway is the place to go.

Beautiful buildings

Oh and did I mention the food?  I really like Norwegian cuisine.  Lots and lots of seafood – fish, shrimp, mussels.  It, like Sweden, is really healthy and very tasty.  Cheese, dark breads, fish soup, vegetables and fruit.  There is a reason most Norwegians are slim and healthy.  The fish soup was amazing.  And their open sandwiches with shrimp or other “salad” fare are just delectable.  And of course I love the language.  Norwegian has a bit different sound than Swedish.  They can understand each other.  I used to think Swedish was more sing songy but I think Norwegian is.  Then again I would really need to listen to them side by side to draw a final conclusion.  But for instance, the word for I is Jeg in Norwegian (yay) and Jag in Swedish (yo).  But their three extra vowels are pronounced the same.  I still would love to learn this language.  I have definitely put No