June 5, 2017. For our anniversary this year, we decided to get out of town and into the countryside for a long weekend. A Norwegian friend of ours had recommended that we travel south towards the mouth of the Oslo Fjord, where Viking burial grounds and art galleries proliferate. Yeah, a weird combo, I know. But with all of the area’s postcard-perfect beaches, farmland, and forests, I can totally see its appeal to both conquerors and creative types.
May 1, 2017. Arriving back from our Malta Easter trip catapulted us immediately into stress central at work. But luckily, I discovered the perfect antidote for anxiety: observing reindeer migrate. For seven days in a row, whenever free time permitted, I parked my butt in front of the TV to catch NRK’s round-the-clock broadcast of the annual reindeer migration across northern Norway. Nothing is nearly so tranquilizing — and yet bizarrely life-affirming — as witnessing a herd of these impossibly cute creatures wander rather lackadaisically across endless fields of white.
One last post about Malta. I can’t leave the islands without talking about their unique cuisine and incredible art. Plus I thought I’d address some practicalities, too: how to get around the islands and where to stay. Just a little bit left to cover, but I’m gonna let the photos do most of the talking, so get ready to feast your eyes. Continue reading Malta: Edibles, Art, and Getting Around Town
April 24, 2017. For the nature lovers in the crowd, today I’ll be focusing on Malta’s alfresco options. The place is made for hiking, biking, swimming — and movie making. Whether you know it or not, you’ve probably seen some of the islands’ most stunning settings courtesy of ads, television, and films like Troy, The DaVinci Code, Captain Phillips, Gladiator, and too many to mention here. Continue reading Malta: The Great Outdoors
April 23, 2017. As promised, the theme for today’s memories of Malta is prehistoric peoples and pagans. Now before you begin yawning on me, I guarantee that the photos and stories of Malta’s catacombs and megalithic temples (think Stonehenge on steroids) will rock your world, bad pun intended. Jaw-dropping is the only way to describe them. And I bet that by the end of this post, you’ll be booking your next vacay to see this stuff with your own eyes.
April 22, 2017. Yep, that’s right, it’s still Easter in my Newbie In Norway timeline. And I’m still behind on my blogging due to that pesky thing called my day job. So prepare to be bombarded with posts in the next couple of weeks as I take some time off my regular paying gig to catch up on life here in Norway. That being said, I can’t pass up the opportunity to tell you about our Easter Week in Malta — the tenth smallest country in the world. Never heard of it? Sure you have. Think Humphrey Bogart in the classic film-noire hit, The Maltese Falcon. But more about that storyline later. Continue reading Malta: Easter in a Christian Enclave
April 9, 2017. Shortly before Easter break, a small snowstorm hit Oslo. Nothing like the knee-deep dumping of white stuff that we sometimes get back home in Chicago. But enough to slow traffic and give Norwegians an excuse to ditch work and go skiing. The fickle weather we’ve had this year hasn’t afforded much opportunity for enjoying the trails, so any small dusting is much appreciated.