It was a week of firsts. Norwegian class has been a real hoot. Obviously, there are tons of international students in our class trying to “snakker norsk,” as the kids say. I have a limited knowledge of the language, so it’s pretty easy for me, but there are some classmates of mine who can barely speak English.
Sonja and I aren’t in the same class, but she said there is an Italian girl who has an English dictionary to decipher what Astrid (our fabulous, Helen Miren look-alike teacher) is saying. What a mess. Astrid emphasizes the importance of correct pronunciation all while making old people jokes about herself. She also cakes on the make-up, which I absolutely love! Hopefully I’ll be able to snap a picture with her before the semester is over, but we’ll have to see.
I also started my internship Wednesday with Utrop, Norway’s first multi-cultural newspaper. My supervisor, Are Vogt, took me on a tour of the office and introduced me to the staff. Are explained that Utrop gives a voice to the multi-cultural citizens of Norway (namely Oslo) while not being overly sympathetic. It is a news organization after all.
After the introduction to all that is Utrop, Are sort of just pushed me into the deep end. He assigned me a story about “krafttak for norskopplæring” which is an initiative to get immigrants to learn Norwegian. There is going to be a change in the way the state pays for people’s tuition in 2010, so there will most likely be a big push to get people to enroll in a class as soon as possible, while it’s still free for them.
I made some class and sent some e-mails, and learned that it sucks not speaking Norwegian. Everyone knows English, but I feel bad when I say, “Beklager, jeg snakker ikke norsk” (“Sorry, I don’t speak Norwegian.”) Well, now I guess I could say, “Jeg snakker litt norsk.” Nevertheless, I hope I have a good start to my whirlwind career as a Norwegian journalist.
Tuesday night was pretty remarkable. After going to Mono Cafe, we stopped at McDonald’s. And after three weeks of bland food and disappointment, I now know that a cheeseburger and fries equals complete and utter bliss. The French kids we were with got a good laugh as they believe that Americans can’t possibly live without McDonald’s. Let’s be real, we can’t.
Side note: Ted Kennedy’s death made the front page over here, which was the first American news I had seen outside of CNN and HuffPost. Major bummer.
Tomorrow will be a day-o-homework and then a group of us are going to a concert in Grünerløkka, which has quickly become a hot spot. A lot of cute cafes and oh, so trendy.
Also, Kirby and I might move a little further towards campus to Sogn Studentby. We have a lot of friends there and it’s basically like switching dorm buildings. No big. It’s a little closer to campus and it has more T-Bane trains that go to it, which would give us more time and cut out the embarrassing running we do to catch the one that goes by Kringsjå.
We’d be moving in with our German BFF Charlotte and a few others, but Kirby doesn’t want me to be so optimistic. Oprah says that we should all embrace The Secret, meaning we should imagine ourselves already living there, having a blast. Maybe I’m jinxing us, but we’ll find out tomorrow.