Here’s a quick snapshot of my fist 3 weeks in Oslo
When I landed in Oslo it was dark, cold, and rainy; not a very warm welcome from the city that was to be my home for the next six months.
After a day or two when the jet lag had worn off and I had settled into the accommodation I began to realise what Norway is about. Oslo is an awesome place located at the northern tip of the Oslofjorden, a long strip of water that stretches inland from the North Sea, and surrounded by snowy, rolling mountains. The city is small compared to Sydney with roughly 600,000 people although depending on the time of day it can feel just as crowded as back home. Many of the locals do not have cars and use the super convenient public transport system which include trains, buses and the metro which makes it travel very easy.
Oslo is a funny city and the atmosphere is constantly changing. For example on Sunday’s the entire city shuts down. The only stores that are open are convenience stores and the city feels sort of like a ghost town. However during the week in comes back to life, people are buzzing all around the city even when it’s dark (4pm). It wouldn’t be uncommon to see people riding around on cross-country skis to take their dogs for a walk. Norwegians love being outside and the cold weather never seems to bother them.
So far it has been pretty full on which is been perfect and an easy way to meet new people. Some of the various events have included karaoke, bus tours, pub-crawls, hiking trips, skiing and a few free dinners that are a decent break from my crap cooking.
Probably the best thing though is there’s just over 250 exchange students who are all in the same boat. I made good friends with the people in my building and last weekend we rented a car and drove to Sweden for some cheaper shopping and a boozy lunch. For some exchange students it’s similar to home but at the end of the day everyone is here to have a good time, meet new people and hopefully get a bit of Uni done on the side.
I’m very happy with my choice in Oslo and looking forward to the next few months ahead.
Angus Cooke – 12048043