Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Trondheim & Lutefisk

If these pics don't put you in the holiday spirit immediately, then I seriously question your ability to ever get into the holiday spirit.  There's snow.  Lots of it.  There's even a snowman.  There are also tons of evergreens.  And some cute little red and green Norwegian buildings....covered in snow.

The cause of this winter wonderland was a trip to see my friend Ingvar, who I met at the University of Oregon.  Ingvar is an authentic Norwegian, and it's fun to hear his take on living in America (and it's nice to talk to someone who knows what the heck we're talking about when we say we're from Oregon).  We also appreciate his use of Farenheit when he tells us about the weather (though we're coming around on Celsius conversions!)  

But back to the weekend...

Ingvar lives in Trondheim now, with Silje, who we enjoyed meeting very much.  Silje is also an authentic Norwegian (and she can do some amazing knitting to prove it).

So, thank you very much, Ingvar and Silje, for a wonderful, snow-filled weekend in Trondheim!

Photo time...

Hike in the forest with a view of the Trondheimsfjord.  This was pre-blizzard.

 Beautiful view!

 And the snow hits!  Ingvar and Silje pushed their absolutely adorable baby girl uphill in the snow (told you they're legit Norwegians!)  All Norwegian babies have these awesome warm sleeping bags in their strollers, and wear all kinds of wool layers to stay warm.  It's impressive.  And precious.

This happened in like 20 minutes.  Also, please note that I will never live anywhere without huge, pretty evergreens all around.  This forest reminded me of sweet, sweet Oregon.  And we only had to drive ten minutes through the city, compared to 1.5 hours to get to Mt Hood in the winter.

Ken tried to tell me to keep my eyes open.  Pretty sure that's impossible when there are huge snowflakes pelting you in the eyes...

 Our wonderful hosts for the weekend.

Now for a walk through the pretty city of Trondheim.  Snowman friend!

Love these colorful buildings on the Nidelva River.  And yes, that's snow falling in front of my lens in every pic...

 Cool bridge.  There's actually a track at the end of this bridge (behind me) where you can put your bike tire and have it pull you uphill.  It's genius.  Need to take that idea back to P-town.

 Beautiful Nidaros Cathedral.  The inside was incredible.  Just beautiful.  There was a church service going on when we quietly went in ('twas Sunday)...candles, dark, gorgeous.

 Very detailed and beautiful wall of the Cathedral.  The snow kind of interferes with the detail here.  But please rest was gorgeous.

It was a lovely weekend indeed.  Can't wait to go back this summer!

And now, I leave you with a moment that is the antithesis of a Moment of Zen:

This, my friends, is Lutefisk.  And it's definitely not delicious.  Ken's Norwegian co-workers have started the tradition of going to a restaurant for a Christmas Lutefisk dinner every year.  And since Norwegians obviously don't celebrate Thanksgiving, the Christmas season seems to begin in November here.  

Here's a description, if you're curious...

So, we decided to be adventurous and brave, and attend the dinner.  I took two bites of this gelatinous creation.  Then drank a lot of wine.  Ken took a few bites, gagging on the first.  Then he drank a lot of beer.  We also had some akevitt (also not that tasty, but at least it doesn't jiggle), which is standard with this meal.  Then we gobbled up the dessert of rice pudding with berry syrup, which was the only redeeming course of the evening (other than the beverages).   

And we won't even talk about how much those five bites of pain cost us. 

It was actually a very fun night though, with lots of laughter.  And we can now mark this off the list of requirements for our Viking badges.  

So here's to Lutefisk!