Friends of friends alerted us to an American family from Bellingham who was considering coming to Norway this year. We've been corresponding with them via email, and they decided to take the plunge and move to Elverum for the year. Elverum is a small town about 4 or 5 hours south of Trondheim. I understand they have wonderful trails for biking and skiing, but maybe not a lot more. This weekend they came to stay with us and experience life in "the big city."
I picked up Brita, Peter, and their two children Conlon and Juliette (ages 15 and 13) at the train station Friday evening. We had a traditional local meal of sodd (meatball and lamb soup with potatoes and carrots), played some games, and visited our neighbors Martin and Elisabeth for øl (beer) and sjokoladekake (chocolate cake). Martin and Elisabeth joke that they are our "token Norwegian friends" because we've been bringing so many visitors over to see "real Norwegians." It was a delightful evening.
The next day, we walked downtown, passing through Kristiansten festning and Bakklandet, then across the bridge towards the Torg. Peter (my son Peter) show me the climbing center where he has climbing class each week. Holy cow! The place is huge and scary!
The Kiffney's then explored downtown while I worked the Forskningstorg and my kids ran around making slime and riding Segways. In the evening, we were all a little tired, but we pepped up a little for games and Rock Band.
In the morning, after a traditional breakfast of waffles and brunost, we drove down to Lade and built a fire on the rocky shores of the fjord. Maggie made a lucky find: a bundle of sticks, pre-sharpened to points perfect for roasting pølse. We ate and walked up to the top of a cliff where we had a fantastic view of field and fjord.
We weren't sure what to expect with a family we'd never met before, but we got along great with the Kiffney's. It was a very fun and easy weekend, especially with the PERFECT fall weather we've been having this week. It's almost nice enough to make me forget how cold the summer and winter have been!
Brita is keeping a blog also, much like this one, so if you'd like to read about another family's experiences in a slightly different kind of Norwegian setting, you can check out her blog at:
Here's one more picture, of two boys both named Peter Michael. Yet another coincidence.