Other than celebrating my first year in Norway, I've been a little quiet on here of late. Reason being, I've been incredibly busy!
A New Job
When I moved here one year ago it was on a temporary contract, so my future was always unclear. Sadly things didn't work out so the past couple of weeks I've been looking around for a job. Not an easy thing to do when you don't speak the language fluently and you're running out of money! Well, I have some good news…
I'm staying in Norway!
This week I was offered and accepted a permanent job as a consultant for Safran Software here in Oslo. I start on Monday. Hipp Hipp Hurra! It'll be a big change for me. I'm used to contracting, hopping around from job to job, so taking a permanent job was a big step.
Not least because it commits me to Norway. But after a year sampling Norwegian life, much of it documented on this blog, it's a challenge I'm more than ready for. I can finally make some concrete plans for things like holidays 🙂
I actually start with three days of training in Stavanger, the last of the “big four” Norwegian cities I'm still to visit, so expect a report and some photos soon!
A New Apartment
Some time ago I gave notice on my rented city centre apartment, due to all the job uncertainty. Following the job offer, my attention turned to an apartment search. I dropped my budget in order to save more (potentially to buy a place in the future), so to say I was not looking forward to the search is an understatement.
But it couldn't have gone better! I viewed just two apartments before finding a great little place in a lovely area. My only compromise on my wish list (a proper kitchen, a separate bedroom, a sofa-bed in the lounge, a balcony) was the balcony, but there is some good outside space that'll be just perfect on a warm summers day. I'll introduce you all to my new home when I move in a couple of weeks, but for now let's just say it'll be quite a change from living in the city centre!
A Summer Holiday
Perhaps even more pleased than me with my new job were my parents. Back in January they booked a summer trip to Norway to celebrate my Dad's 60th Birthday. Now my future here is secure, we've finally been able to make some firm plans! We will start the week in July chilling out in Oslo, but then we will jump on a train and head to the fjords. We chose not to do the famous Norway in a Nutshell trip, preferring to make our own arrangements, which has worked out way cheaper!
We'll stay for a couple of nights in a beautiful apartment in the village of Flåm. As well as sailing the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord, we'll be taking a couple of walks around the valley and just r-e-l-a-x-i-n-g. Wonderful! My mum will stay in Norway for a second week for which we've planned a visit to Trondheim, a place I think she'll love.
A New Direction?
I've had a little blogging crisis of late, not sure what to write about. So last week I launched a survey to understand who was reading Life in Norway, what they liked about it and what they'd like to see. A huge tusen takk to everyone who responded. The results spoke to me!
The majority of readers actually live outside Norway, or are Norwegian nationals curious at how their country is perceived. I'd expected a lot more readers to be expats living in Norway – not so. I've had many ideas for developing the site aimed at expats.
Most of these ideas have distracted me from my original goal – documenting in words and pictures what living in Norway is really like – which as it turns out, is what you like! For example, the most popular posts have been my raw responses to the terrorist attacks, my explanation of brown cheese and my summary of 26 things I learned from a year in Norway.
Expect more posts like those 🙂
Within the next few weeks I'm going to relaunch the site with a simpler design to focus on the words and pictures. Lately I've been experimenting with Instagram, sharing photos and making connections. More pictures were high on your wish list, so I'll look to incorporate Instagram and/or Flickr into the site somehow.
To the Future
I've no doubt my first year in Norway has changed my life for the better. Now I have a whole lot more to look forward to! Won't you stay for the ride? 🙂