Now most people have been to Ikea. Some Ikeas even have public transport that will take you there and back but you must be mindful of what you bring back on the bus or the bus driver will give you a funny look and maybe not let you on. I know this because I have taken a set of wooden shelves on the bus in Cambridge (these weren’t from Ikea though).
In Oslo many people live in the city centre area in flats. There are two Ikeas in Oslo (yes that’s right – two Ikeas!) and there is a free bus to them both. Now because Ikea has free parking some people use the free bus as a free park and ride into Oslo centre and transport home from the airport (Ikea don’t seem to mind). But some people are genuinely going to Ikea to go shopping and come back with brown paper and blue Ikea bags which they then merrily carry home to their flats. I’ve been to both Ikeas since arriving in Oslo and carried things home on the free bus and then not so free tram. I even bought a mattress and paid to have it delivered (if you’ve read the post about Norwegian queuing, there was some queuing involved in this process).
However some people feel that a couple of bags are not sufficient to take on the bus. After all the bus is free, so why not take a bed home on it. Yes, you did read correctly and if I could work out how to connect my mobile to my computer you could have a photo of it.
So next time you are in the big blue warehouse, having driven there in your car, think about those people who took a bed home on the free bus.
My new flat is smaller than my house. Many of you will know that I had a clearout sale to raise money for Reach, and therefore know how much stuff I had. Note to self – never have that much stuff again – one in one out policy! Those of you who saw how many books I had will be glad to know that I’ve joined the library. I’ve even resisted the temptation of a 3 for 2 offer on books in English from a bookshop nearby! So I’ve gone from a kitchen, garage, dining room, lounge, bathroom, two bedrooms and a study to a kitchen, lounge, shower room and bedroom.
The flat is in an old building and is very like Edinburgh and Glasgow tenements with two flats on each landing. There are still many original features in the flat including a wood burning stove. Now I have memories of my Dad clearing out our coal burning stove that used to heat the hot water during the winter. It’s a messy job and I had to repeat the fire lighting part of my Guide camping badge (no firelighters allowed!), so I don’t know whether I’ll use it yet.
Here are some photos of what it looks like (without stuff in it!)
On Wednesday morning a few weeks ago my human got up early and fed me, I didn’t even have to wake her up! But then she cleaned my litter tray and put it in a bag, I was very puzzled by this. She took some bags out of the house and then put me in my box. She knows I don’t like my box. I thought I was going to the vet again. I’d only been on Monday! My human put me in a car and we were in the car for a very long time, I complained a lot. When the car stopped my human took me out of my box and put me in a wooden box and a strange man took me away. I’m a bit vague about what happened next but it was very noisy, my ears popped, and it was a bit scary. I was then taken to a strange building with strange people talking a funny language. Eventually my human appeared and put me back in my normal box and we went on another car journey. I complained again but she didn’t let me out. When she did eventually let me out of the box, I was in another strange place. There was still no furniture but this time there were no carpets either! We seem to be staying in this place and after a couple of nights on the floor and on top of my human there is now somewhere comfy for me and my human to sleep. I’ve also got a new scratching post.
Now Brits are known for our ability to queue. We form an orderly line and wait our turn – simple and you can see clearly how long you have till you get to the front. The Norwegians also like their queues. They use a ticket system – sounds simple – you take a number and you wait until your number is called. But…. they have different numbers for different tasks. Those of you who have been to the refurbished Bolton town centre post office will have experienced something similar – you have to select what you want to do on a screen and this gives you a ticket, numbered according to what your task is. The same thing happens in Norway. This different number for different tasks means though that you don´t know how many people are in front of you in total (you may have an idea of how many people are in front of you for that task). I´m sure they think this is efficient and it is made slightly more efficient by the number of people who once they have got their ticket give up and go away.
I went to register with the police on Thursday, ticket number H53 apparently 44 people in the queue in front of me. I was there for 2 1/2 hours before my number was called. Not all 44 people had stayed and waited. If they had I´d have been there longer than 2 1/2 hours! A similar thing happened at Ikea and at the public transport office when buying a ticket. Hmm, efficiency?
There’s been alot of strange men in my house over the last few weeks. Sometimes my human shuts me in a room which I don’t like, but other times I get to watch what’s going on. Stripping paper off walls was the most interesting. But today she put me in my box. I was very annoyed and no matter how much I wriggled or miowed she wouldn’t let me out for ages. When she did let me out the furniture was gone – there is nowhere comfy in the front room for me to keep an eye on the garden and especially George from a few doors away. Perhaps this is all to do with the adventure my human keeps mentioning. Off for a sleep now.
So this isn’t about Norway, but it is about knitting. I went to a conference and had a holiday in Australia in the middle of my preparations for moving. As part of my holiday I went to stay with my friends Fi and Puse in Brisbane. Brisbane had been attacked by yarnbombers! But unfortunately all I managed to see were a couple of lampost jumpers – the rest having been “acquired”.
I’m moving to Oslo and thought it would be a good idea to keep a record of my experiences. Pudding (my cat) will also contribute and give his perspective. We’re not there yet though, so more to come in a few weeks.