Exploring Oslo

in #blog3 years ago (edited)

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As I've written too many niche-specific posts for an audience whose souls have already been replaced by their Turing complete replacements, lately, I will try to write a more typical blog post, focusing on visuals, impressions and experience, rather than well, whatever I usually tend to write about.

Wow, that was a long sentence. We're off to a bad start.

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It's a beautiful day

I was working in Oslo this summer, and my friend @hawkwall, who lives in the area, is leaving Norway after the summer, so we agreed to meet up for an icecream.

I was told to meet him at Nationaltheatret, which I assumed is a national theater. My apartment was a few good miles away from there, but @hawkwall said it was only a short ten minute subway trip away. I was kind of hesitant about familiarizing myself with the subway. It's not that I don't like public transportation or anything, or, well, now that I think about it, I could probably write a few thousand words about previous bad experiences with public transportation, but let's not go that route. Let's just say that over the past six years, I've mainly walked, so I'm a little out of practice.

Well, I gave it a try and I was positively surprised. The subway was there, just as I arrived at the subway stop. I'll admit that I almost went onto the pram and not the subway. For some reason their lines cross right by where I live, and the subway wasn't underground right there, so there was no way for me to tell whether it was a subway or just a way.

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On the subway

Anyways, I stepped onto the subway and as I stepped on, I pressed the buy button on an app I had downloaded, called Ruter, which enabled me to buy an electronic ticket. You can imagine my surprise when the app told me that my ticket purchase had been approved and that I had to wait two minutes before I was allowed to step onto the subway. Well, the doors had already closed, so I prayed that there would be no ticket control the following two minutes.

One of the things I don't like about public transportt is that often, some of the seats are placed backwards, and it's often crowded, so you have to try to not stare at anyone, which often leaves you with a stiff neck. I could of course talk to some of these strangers, but this is Norway. We don't do that here.

This trip appeared to intruce no such problems. Sure, some of the seats were placed backwards, but there were very few people on the subway, which made for a pleasant experience and made me consider using public transportation more actively in the future.

That was until someone sat down in the seat facing mine, and I had to sit the rest of the trip looking at my phone, trying not to get eye contact.

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Arriving at the subway station

Funny story: I was so busy trying trying to look busy on my phone, checking Steemit and what not, that I forgot to get off the subway at the right stop. Thankfully, I only missed one stop, I think, so rather than being bummed, I decided to accept the slightly longer walk as an opportunity to view more of Oslo.

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Rainbows everywhere

I suddenly found myself in the middle of a massive QLBT parade. There were rainbows everywhere, and my familiarity with Oslo's streets, which was already significantly insignificant, was now virtually non-existent.

All the people made it difficult to get to get anywhere, but with a bit of patience, I managed to get to a building which looked like it could be named Nationaltheatret. It turned out to be the wrong building, but after some sparse communication with @hawkwall, I realized that my confused wandering had eventually left me standing right next to Nationaltheatret.

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Looking back, I have no idea why I didn't take a picture of Nationaltheatret, but I believe it was the building which is barely visible at the right in the picture above. We walked towards a part of the city called Tjuvholmen. To be fair, I'm not sure if it was Tjuvholmen, but I've heard that Tjuvholmen is a nice place, and the place we went to was nice, so while my logic doesn't appear to be logic... Okay, just bear with me. We'll get there.

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Walking the streets of Oslo

While walking towards Tjuvholmen, we passed countless Porsches. Sure, Porsches aren't that unusual in Norway, but I have a habit of snapping a picture every time I see one. I quite like the above picture. It's zoomed in digitally, so its quality isn't the best, but I really like the colors, or rather lack thereof.

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We did eventually get to what I believe was Tjuvholmen. Here, all the buildings looked like they were designed with passion, the sun shined a bit brighter and the alleys weren't as crowded.

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Right by the sea

Even featuring a nice little beach, I kept wondering why most people preferred to walk around the center of the city when they could rather walk around this place, which in my opinion looked considerably nicer.

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Starting to feel hungry

@hawkwall was starting to express his hunger for ice cream. Besides eating code and Twist chocolate, and sometimes a weird combination of apples, sausages and rice, he also eats a considerable amount of ice cream.

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A proper blogging ice cream

We went to this ice cream store whose products @hawkwall seemed suspiciously familiar with. It was one of those typical Instagram ice cream bars, the kind of ice cream bar you want to be associated with among your ice cream friends.

I'm not sure why @hawkwall chose this particular ice cream bar. Maybe he considered me an ice cream friend and was trying to gain my ice cream respect? It was unreasonably expensive, which was maybe the point. I don't know about you, but in my opinion $10 is a lot for an ice cream.

It tasted great, but it's 2018. For $10, I expect to get an ice cream which doesn't melt.

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Pushwagner art

As my unmeltable ice was starting to melt, we passed a storage building which featured some art by Pushwagner, who passed away earlier this year. i'm a huge fan of his art, but all his pieces are awesome, so who isn't a fan?

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Looking for water

By this time, we had walked for a while, and I was starting to feel thirsty. @hawkwall thought he knew about a drinking fountain, but he was pretty certain that it was sometimes used as a urinal as well. As if that wasn't enough, he didn't know where this drinking fountain was located either.

I started scouting for restrooms, so I could get some tap water. After all, a lot of Oslo was yet to be explored, so I had to stay hydrated. I found a nice bathroom in a shopping mall, but it had one of those water faucets whose temperature is non-adjustable. Maybe it's a shady marketing trick to save the market for water bottles. I wasn't in the mood to drink hot water, so we kept walking.

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The Parliament

@hawkwall suddenly remembered where the drinking fountain he knew about was, but after a fifteen minute walk, it wasn't there. Even in my thirsty state, I found that to be quite hilarious. At this point we were standing next to the Norwegian parliament. Not unlike the buildings at Tjuvholmen, this building appeared to have been designed with passion, and maybe even some bunad.

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Exploring the streets

As we walked in a direction I did neither identify nor recognize, we spotted this cool motorcycle. While I don't consider myself a motorcycle enthusiast the same way I consider myself a car enthusiast, I can appreciate a nice-looking bike.

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A vending machine materializes

Outside of KG, which is a Christian Gymnasium, I did, to my relief, spot a wending machine. It's been a long time since I've used one of those, so whenever I see one, I'm not sure if it actually still works or if it's just been left unattended since the dawn of time. This vending machine in particular looked very old, but upon closer inspection, the LCD display showed that it was maintaining a cold temperature. The prices were affordable as well. Had I not bought that ice cream, I could have bought four sodas from the vending machine.

I bought a Coca Cola, and just like that, I'll sum up my Oslo experience with a few additional pictures:

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Getting back

As you can probably imagine, taking the subway back to my apartment was a bit difficult, but it did work out in the end.

As I find myself writing this post, three weeks after the fact, it strikes me how quickly time flies. Naturally, this thought has struck me countless times. It's fascinating. And scary.

Wow, it's suddenly midnight. That means it's my birthday.


Hi oyvindsabo,

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This is the best blog post I've read all week. So detailed and full of life pictures. Oslo is such a cool place.

Thanks, I tried to put some more effort into it for once. I'm glad you like it. It feels great to see that it paid off.

You have a minor misspelling in the following sentence:

Even featuring a nice little beach, I kept wondering why most people prefered to walk around the center of the city when they could rather walk around this place, which in my opinion looked considerably nicer.
It should be preferred instead of prefered.

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