Oslo, the beginning

I can’t decide on the moment when all this actually started. Well, I’m here since June 1st 2008 but the story is more ancient than this. Maybe back to highschool when I was given the phone number of a woman who would teach me Swedish? Or maybe way earlier when I was dreaming of snow and ice princesses lands while listening to those vinyl stories.
But what matters most is that I am here NOW while I type this. It was somewhere last year in September I think when a friend whom I’ll always be grateful for this has asked me why did I give up my dream of moving to Scandinavia. And the only answer I had was ‘yea, why?’. Hence, the next day I started looking for jobs and eventually I got the phone call saying ‘You want this job?’. And I sure did! Oh, happy choice.
Actually few weeks before that I came to Oslo for 2 days, for an interview so that’s when I first got here. I remember I was so nervous when I landed as I had dreamt of this for so long and all of a sudden I am able to step on these grounds. Was too happy to actually remember much of any other first impressions. And sad as well that I couldn’t share them with those long gone…
Later on I was to find out that those two days in April were some of the first really sunny ones so I was quite lucky from the first time. The interview was for a DBA position, even if I had no experience as DBA but well, I had with Oracle and databases and data and such, so they thought I could do it.
I had like half a day to just wander around the streets of Oslo, which I did as you can see in these pics.
Some of the first impressions I go after I stepped out the Central Station (there is a train that takes you from there to the airport and vice-versa):

  • Fresh air. Or ‘breathable’. Even if there were lots of street works next to the station, you couldn’t feel the dust invading your lugns and throat
  • ‘Strangers’. I mean, coming to Scandinavia you more or less expect to see blond tall people everywhere. Or well, white at least. Or even pink, but I think the majority of the people I first saw were dark skinned. Indians, arabians, africans. I admit I was a tad shocked. And they didn’t seem like tourist and now I pretty much believe they were not. There are a lot of immigrants in the city so you’re no longer surprised to see them. It’s actually fun and even interesting since you get to see all these dressing codes and haircuts and colors
  • hardly any tall buildings, somewhere in the center, close to the station. Else, 2-3 floors buildings or those traditional houses. Oh, note that here they start counting the floors from the bottom floor. So what in Romania is 1st floor, here is already 2nd.

Will probably make a list of differences one day but that’s what I spotted back then. I stayed at this Christiania Clarion Hotel right across Central Station. Nice room (160 EUR per night as I remember since I had to pay for it due some wrong double payment), good food and right in the center. Photos ar at the link above.


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