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Erin's HomeWinter Eurotrip 2005-2006Christmas in Norway


Winter Eurotrip 2005-2006

Christmas in Norway |

We left Hahn airport the next day and got into Oslo around 6pm. Our train to Ogna was scheduled to leave Oslo at 10pm. We got on the shuttle bus around 8pm, the bus that we were told would take us to the train station.

Unfonrtunately for us, RyanAir has this nasty little habit of telling you that you will be landing in a major city and then dumping you in the middle of nowhere to fend for yourselves.

Yes, we were in 'Oslo Torp', which, as you might have deduced, is nowhere near Oslo. We found this out from a nice man who was riding the bus with us.

The only small glitch was that the bus was going nowhere near Oslo. It was headed to the southern coast. Problem? I think so.

Why? Because the train from Oslo to Ogna was the last one running before Christmas. If we did not get on that train, we would be spending Christmas in...uh...where were we?

The bus was heading for Larvik. The nice man on the bus helped us communicate with the bus driver, who informed us that there might be a train from Larvik that might stop in Dramen (you still with me?), where we might be able to intersect our train that left from Oslo.

Basically, it would pretty much be nothing short of a Christmas miracle if we could get this train.

But we tried.

And we got it. With about ten minutes to spare.

We got to Ogna at 6 in the morning, where Eric and Audun were waiting for us out in the cold (Eric is Sonja's uncle, Audun is his father-in-law, whose house we would be staying at for Christmas).

He was waving an American flag and gave us all big hugs. It was great.

We got to their house and Annie (Eric's wife) and Aslaug (Annie's mother, Audun's wife) were waiting to greet us. Everyone was so excited to have us there.

We ate our first traditional Norwegian breakfast that morning, where I experienced for the first time the likes of liver paste and beef tongue.

Then they let us go to bed, since we were exhausted, and we woke up around 1pm to find the house empty and leftovers from lunch waiting to be heated up. Later that day I discovered that the delicious meatballs I had consumed were actually reindeer meat. Yeah. I don't think I need to explain the irony of this occurring at Christmas time.

The next four days were absolutely wonderful. The family was so generous and kind, and did everything they could to make us feel at home. We would stay up late into the nights talking about life, politics, family, etc. We went to church both Christmas eve and Christmas day, and partook in all the traditions of a Norwegian Christmas, such as eating lutefisk and rumegraut and dancing and singing around the Christmas tree.

And we ate. Alot. All we did was eat.

The day before we left Annie and Eric took us on a road trip to show us all that the southern coast had to offer. It was absolutely breathtaking. I can't even explain it in words. (Luckily I have pictures.)

It was sad to leave the family the next day. We took a group photo before we left and exchanged email addresses. When Audun dropped us off at the train station he hugged us all and told us this would be a Christmas he would never ever forget.

I have to say I agree completely.

Locations Visited: Torp, Larvik, Drammen, Ogna

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