Cruising to Denmark, Serving Beer, and Feeling Comfortable here in Oslo

A lot has happened in the past two weeks.  So much that I forgot to make a post last week.  But I will waste no time in getting down to business here.

Unfortunately I did not make to Tromso, Norway two weekends ago.  Our couch surfers did not respond in time for us to make a cheap flight to the north country.  Instead I had the opportunity to go on a free cruise to Denmark.  Yes, it was completely free.

On Saturday the 2nd, myself and a bunch of friends made reservations for a free cruise to Frederikshavn, Denmark.  I do not quite understand how it became to be completely free but we believed that because it is a “low season” for tourism that they want people to travel on the ship so that they may buy alcohol and other commodities on the ship.  So that night we arrived at the port and after a brief screening of ages we were all on the ship on our way to Denmark.

The cruise was a blast.  Our rooms were small and windowless, however the duty-free shopping and partying made up for it.  The prices for everything from beer to chocolate was significantly lower as there were no taxes aboard the ship.  Needless to say my friends and I partied the entire night.  There was a club on board with dancing and less than okay music.  It was not crowded by any means but I felt like we were of the minority being younger than 30 years old.  We were able to hang out on the deck outside of the ship and at night it was great to see lights of passing cities and the bright Oslo departing in our wake.

However, because it was a free cruise we were only able to spend about 1 hour in Frederikshavn.  The town was small and we really only had time to visit the market to take advantage of the cheap Danish prices.  Our journey back was shorter but a lot more beautiful.  You could witness the ship breaking the ice in front of us as we made our way back into the Oslo fjord.  On shore, you could see small yet beautiful towns lining the ocean.  It was a great sight and I could not help but wish I will be living in one of those places in the future.

During the past two weeks I also had the opportunity to volunteer at the student pub in my “dorm village.”   It is strictly volunteering so I am not paid for my work, however free beer and meeting Norwegians is all the payment I need for work like this!  I was working with other students my age and they taught me how to serve a beer and work a Norwegian cash machine.  The work was very easy as I did not have to know how to make a cocktail or do anything more than pour beers for other students.  It was a great experience as I was able to meet a lot of Norwegians who were intrigued to find an American working behind the bar.  Playing off the stereotype, they were all friendly and talkative as much alcohol was served.  Plus I was able to practice some of my basic Norwegian.

And yes, I am still attending classes however little of them there may be.  I have had few readings and no homework as the entire grade is based on the final exam which are in April and May depending on the class.

In the coming weeks I am hoping to start doing some travelling around central Europe.  My friends and I wish to visit Berlin and Prague in two weeks.  And I hope to travel to France and the Netherlands to see some of my friends from Montana!  So look out for some more interesting posts coming up at the end of the month.  Skol!

Too long, did not read: Went on a free cruise to Denmark, started volunteering at a pub in my student village.  And hoping to begin travelling in central Europe within the next 3 weeks!

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