Thursday, March 20, 2008


We're off for a mini-vacation in Oslo. We want to be sure to see some other places while over here, and because of Pam's broken leg we've canceled a family trip to Zurich, Switzerland and Pam had to cancel a teacher trip to Lisbon, Portugal. She's doing so much better now, though, that we scheduled a last-minute trip out of town for Easter holiday.

Thursday we took the train for a 6.5 hour ride to Oslo. We sat in the family car which has a special separate play area for the kids with toys, books, and a video screen showing cartoons. What a great idea! The kids were occupied and happy, and Pam and I could relax and watch the beautiful mountainous scenery. In order to get exercise, Pam insisted we hop off the train at every stop and run around. (Can I now claim to have visited Støren, Røros, Tynset, Koppand, Elverum, Hamar, Stange, Tangen, and Eidsvoll?)

We met some nice people on the way. Sitting next to us was a 19-year old soldier coming back to base in Oslo after a one-day vacation. It was fun to talk to him about life in the military, and he helped me with some of my Norwegian homework as well. We also met a couple from Pakistan who live very close to us in Trondheim. Umer is using the same text book in his Norwegian class (the one I tried unsuccessfully to get into), and I was pleased to find out that I'm 3 chapters ahead. We traded phone numbers and they want to have us over for a Pakistani dinner when we get back.

Anna was sick near the end of the trip and Daddy got vomited on. Yup, the good stuff of parenting. She recovered quickly and we survived the bus ride from the train station to our hotel.

We checked into the Radisson SAS Scandanavia at close to 11 pm. Our small room was supposed to have a roll-away bed in it but it didn't, so I called to the front desk. Rather than give us an extra bed, they decided to instead upgrade us to an executive suite! We are now in a two-room suite. The kids have the living room with hide-a-bed and their own bathroom, and Pam and I have our own room as well. It's fantastic! We have a good view out on downtown, including a view of the palace (the royal family are our next-door neighbors). This is a good start to our vacation!

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