Paul and I are sitting at the gate at JFK waiting to get back to our babies and our real lives. Leaving my little people for 13 days wasn't easy (but, contradictorily, was a bit refreshing) and I am eager for some hugs and some serious snuggle time.
May 17 marked a national holiday for Norway (similar to our July 4) that is celebrated with lots of parades. In Trondheim, their were 3 parades over the course of the day - the first full of little children representing their schools, the second more like a traditional parade, and the third for the high school graduates celebrating "russ" (a period of time right after finishing high school where they wear red overalls and run wild). Between the parade participants and the onlookers, I can't imagine anyone was in their homes. I was amazed by their nationalism, most of the onlookers had on traditional native dress (beautiful woolen skirts and vests where the colors and floral patterns represent the region of Norway they are from). People not in that attire were dressed up, lots of men in black suits - not at all like our 4th of July from a fashion perspective.
On our 9 year wedding anniversary, we spent the day on a train ride from Trondheim to Oslo. The countryside was beautiful with rolling snowcapped hills, the occasional farm with fields full of sheep and fuzzy little lambs, and views of the longest river in Norway. When we got in to Oslo it was raining but that didn't stop some of us from heading out to see the sites. We walked down a pedestrian mall, saw the palace, and marched on to an amazing park full of the most fascinating statuary (the pictured featured here among them).
Since then it has been the long process of getting home...