February 10: All-in Norwegian

We went out for a tour today with our borrowed skis. We went on the trails that are part of my walk to work, quite flat and open spaces. With new snow this week, it was perfect.

We had to walk for about 15 minutes from our house to the top of the downhill ski hill, then through a neighborhood to get to the trails. Carrying the skis is a bit of a drag, but it’s great that you can walk in cross country boots, so we didn’t have to carry boots too.

Our pictures make it seem like we are alone, but there were lots of people out, especially as the morning turned into afternoon–families, older folks, college students, tiny kids, and plenty of people out for a good workout.

Ted also packed us a nice snack of sandwiches, tea and hot chocolate. For a first timing outing with the kids, it was good to go down a few paths, then stop for a snack, then take a few more paths before taking the walk back home.

Everyone was a good sport, Nora fell down lots of times, I fell down a few times (I need to practice going downhill and slowing down), Ted dove off the track as he was on a fast downhill because a little kid was on the track coming his way and wasn’t moving. He is such a hero.

Anders is rock solid!  He brought along his camera and got some of these great pictures.

We were only out for a few hours, but it was a great way to get a start, especially for Nora. She is always reluctant to try something new, especially something outdoors. But once she gets outside, she is happy. And as long as she can talk constantly about Harry Potter or whatever happens to come to mind at the moment. Then she is all good. Tomorrow I hope that we can go out for another tour.

We are also enjoying some authentic Norwegian TV viewing. First, chess with Magnus Carlsen, current World Chess Champion and a grandmaster at the age of 13, on both Friday and Saturday nights. Chess on TV! This was a Fisher random match, where the board starts out in a random configuration. They had heart rate monitors on the players to display their pulse. Magnus had a heart rate around 80 almost the whole time, he’s one cool customer. The American he was playing was up in the 120s most of the time. They have constant commentators, scoring showing advantage for one or the other, and they display messages from viewers. Last night, everyone was either knitting or eating tacos (or both), according to the messages that they were sending in. Tonight, Anders sent in an email and it was posted on the program! It says “We are Americans in Norway, you can win Magnus! All my family hopes you can do it!” He was so excited that it was displayed that he couldn’t get a picture of the whole screen in time!

We are also enjoying the Olympics. We have to keep up with the country’s great sports, like women’s cross country this morning, where a Norwegian skier won silver, and biathlon this afternoon. The top-rated male cross country skier is from Trondheim, so that’s exciting. And the Norwegian mixed doubles curling team is killing it! We’ve watched a lot of their matches last night and today. More than once I have heard the words “that’s astounding!” uttered near me. It’s pretty impressive.

Nora has been at her friend’s house across the hall all afternoon and evening. Their big project: Making a pie! They went to the store on their own to buy ingredients and everything. Pretty cute, and we get half of a pie!


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About Christy Anderson Brekken

In no particular order... Instructor and Researcher, Department of Applied Economics, Oregon State University. Educational background: University of MN Law School, 2005. MS in Ag and Resource Economics, Oregon State University, 2011. Teaches: Agricultural Law, Environmental Law. Mother: brilliant 9 year old boy; brilliant 6 year old girl with benign myoclonic epilepsy on a modified ketogenic diet therapy. Married to: Ted Brekken, OSU Department of Electrical Engineering. Ride: Xtra-cycle Edgerunner with kid seat; 400-pound cargo capacity. Grew up: Devils Lake, ND. Lived in: Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN, Pohang, South Korea, Trondheim, Norway, Corvallis, OR. Interests: Cooking, knitting, eating, yoga, laughing, hiking, traveling, staying sane.
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