Thursday, January 04, 2007

Out of the Dark

This is my second day in Oslo. Its dark out. Its dark out most of the time. I don’t think I really understood what it meant for the day to be like that until I experienced it. My room is nice. An American from New Mexico helped me take my things up. They call the groundskeepers caretakers. He called the United States a dictatorship and asked me how life was over there. I got the feeling he missed it though. He kind of thought I was nuts coming here. As he left me standing in the hallway he said, "But man, oh man the dames here are gorgeous. The dames sure are something," and he kissed his hand like a french-man exclaiming himself over bread. I shook my head.

I have roommates. Though, I don’t know their names yet or where they are from. The amazing thing is everyone speaks English. You tend to get the feeling though that they are a little offended at Americans and their lack of ability to speak anything but their own. Everyone I asked for help today as I wandered the city was very cordial. The women are indeed beautiful. Everywhere I walked and turned I caught myself staring. Made me think of the Of Montreal song.

Its cold. There is less snow than I thought. It melts during the day. My first night I didn’t have any sheets, blankets, or pillows and it was rough. I put on all my warm clothes at once. I didn’t know how to use the heater either. Most of the night I spent wondering who else I was living with. Too afraid to stumble out and say hello. But I think its all other international students in this building. The food seems fine. Its very expensive. Everything is very expensive.

Today I figured out the train system. At first I just kept getting off at stops thinking they were Oslo Central Station. Eventually, after asking and walking miles down towards the coast I managed to find it. And with that I found the buses that took me to Ikea. Where I managed to buy linens and such to make my second night more comfortable.

The first night it snowed. And it was a white mist that surrounded the sheer black from the large window where I can look out and stare at muddy commons and Mercedes frozen and white. My cab was a Mercedes. They like their Benzes over here.

I share a bathroom with another person. Who either hasn’t arrived or is a ghost. My roommates seem to be skilled at this act of disappearing. I think everyone is getting situated. Dealing with the strangeness in a foreign land.

I keep forgetting too that Oslo is a sea-city. The birds are huge and wander around like dragons. They sit on their legs and scowl and I clamber along the cobblestones, waiting to find myself amongst something I know. But all there is are words and mouths of things I don’t understand.

This entry is very disjointed. Tomorrow I have to find a police station and get my passport stamped. Oh, I bought groceries, and have decided to hoard my bananas in my room near my bed. If anything, I’ll live off those and tap water. I’m such a maniac sometimes.

I’ll leave you all with some pictures of my room. Hopefully I’ll get acclimated and be able to shake myself loose. Like coins falling away. And empty pockets. I forgot my robot. It’s a pity. But sometimes it all just has to sit far away for a while until you come back with sharper eyes. As for these entries. They will come. And the sun will shine a little brighter as the days tick away.

A View from My Window

Bed (Now with sheets, blankets and pillows)
Room for the next 6 months

wisps and cities made of ice and fire


Anonymous said...

You missed a hell of a game with UTAH. But we won in double overtime, 97-93. We are a ten game win streak and play #17 Air Force on Saturday at AirForce. Hope all is well and you're having fun.


Anonymous said...

that's a nice place there, julian. it took me a second to realize that the bathroom picture was sideways, so for a second i was thinking they do things very differently in norway. and don't worry about entries being disjointed - i didn't notice, and we just want to know how you're doing. and i spotted the map.


Anonymous said...

YES! I had doubts that you were going to make entries abroad... but I think I told you this. Now I'm excited.


Anonymous said...

sounds like you had a rough first night. but, it's good that you're already out and about shopping for important blankets and bananas. your room is nice, but it looks a bit drab. you should decorate your walls. and reim is right. we do just want to know how you're doing.


Anonymous said...

For some reason, you buying sheets at an Ikea abroad made me laugh. However I'm glad you got there in one piece .... as far as your roommates... being your former roommate: keep your bathroom clean... please... We don't want bitchy Europeans after you.....looking forward to more entries :)

Have fun!

Julian LaBounty said...

You have no idea Nicole. Everything is either in swedish or norwegian. so i'm just standing there forever, trying discern what are sheets, paranoid i'm just buying a shitload of pillowcases.

Anonymous said...

reim, i totally did the same thing. i thought to myself, "Vertical shower curtains? that's insane." but it turns out i'm just an idiot. and saiki, drab isn't the word. it's "minimalistic", and i think it suits my crazy ass cousin.
how hairy you are and the idea of you hoarding bananas makes me laugh.
keep writing man.