I came this close to letting a full month go by without a post here. I came this close to allowing my blog to become stagnant, to appear abandoned. Whew! Here I am again, just in time.

All kinds of excuses over here. Good ones, too. We were on vacation in Spain (which I'll blog soon, I promise), and then my best friend took a break from her first-time-expat-life in Malmö to visit us here in Oslo for a week, too. This was a treat for me! Cindy has been here once before, but this trip was a lot less touristy. She got to see a typical few days of life in Norway. It went something like this:


Okay, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration. (The little stick-dudes are awfully cute though, right?)

A typical day in Norwegian life actually includes things like parkas, snow on the rooftops, ice in the streets, brodder og pigger (and sometimes choosing not to wear this marvelous invention , which inevitably leads to falling on one's tush in the aforementioned icy streets). Also, stuffing your scarf into the sleeve of your parka when you stow it for the night, and mournfully rubbing your bruised flesh as you crawl into bed, pulling your individual down comforter up to your chin.

In case you hadn't guessed: I fell on the ice while my pal was in town. Embarrassing and painful. And I'll let it go when I have full range of motion in my right shoulder and thumb again. *whine*

But my typical days in Oslo also include work (writing and website/social media consulting), laundry, making dirty dishes clean again... temporarily, sweeping, grocery shopping, cooking. You know, domestic glamor.

The good news is that I don't mind these tasks. At least 28 days out of 30, they're fine by me. I love our sweet little apartment and making it the perfect home, keeping it clean and smelling as little like the cats as possible, not least because it doubles as my office. It gives me an abiding pleasure to feed my husband and to know he enjoys my cooking. I've even got an apron I love to wear.


So, Cindy got to see all this. And we also made a few-more-than-usual trips out to eat and drink and seek amusement around town:

We saw The Monuments Men at the quaint Gimle Kino down the street. What's better than watching George Clooney in uniform from the height of a reclining chair while holding a glass of wine? (Or, at 1pm, a Coke Zero.) The movie was pretty good. I'll definitely watch it again. A little "cheese-ball", as Cindy would say, but fun.

We had coffee at Fuglen , Oslo's fun retro cafe. In the evening it morphs into a cocktail bar with a Mad Men motif.

We had beers at Schouskjelleren , Oslo's best microbrewery.

We visited the snazzy bar and lounge at Oslo's latest elite hotel, The Thief .


We learned to play Skat , a German card game that--as far as I can tell--is designed to make you want to smack your head against the table and hate yourself for not understanding the incessant calculations. But I'm willing to try it again. I will not submit easily.

We also introduced Cin to the hot, heaping portions of delicious (cheap!) food at Bislett Kebab .

And then I took her to the train station and sent her home, realizing the moment her train pulled out of sight that life is exceedingly atypical when spent in the company of my best friend.

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