Saturday, September 04, 2010

Fall in Oslo

It's a beautiful day outside. Clear, sunny, cool breeze (cold if you are in a shady place). I'll never get used to how fast the seasons change here. I mean, in Texas, we've got two seasons: Hot and Not So Hot. So living here, where the seasons change on a dime and you go from summer one day to fall the next, it's just a huge adjustment for me.

Summer stresses me out a bit, actually. I spend ALL YEAR looking forward to it, I ache through spring just waiting for the day when I can sit in the sun in a tank top and get those first rays of sun. Then I spent all summer counting down the days until August 24th, the Day Fall Arrives (summer is only about 60 days or so, really). And of those days, the percentage of warm sunny days is really quite few. Think about are up against rain and clouds and cool fronts and all sorts of summer-stealing weather, so each rainy day you resent and then the sunny days come and you feel you MUST be outside, you MUST take advantage of it because God only knows where the next good day is coming from. And it's a bit stressful, because some sunny days maybe you don't WANT to go out for a walk or to the park, maybe you have a cold and you want to just be in bed and mope. But you can't, you know that this beautiful sunny day is one of maybe 20-30 you will have ALL YEAR so you have to go out in it whether you want to or not. See what I mean? Summer is stressful.

Then the weather suddenly cools off, and you can't wear your sundresses or sandals anymore and it's only September 1. Most of this is societal pressure, honestly. I still am wearing sandals, but then I get people always asking me if my feet are cold. They stare as if I am from another planet, and they have never seen toes before. Norwegians are obsessed with keeping their feet warm, the whole society is built up around warm feet, warm shoes, warm bathroom's like if your feet get cold, you've been failed by the Norwegian system. (Toes are just not exposed after September 1, you might as well walk around with your nips out.) My feet are ALWAYS cold, always have been cold, whether they are bundled up in socks and boots or not. I'm so used to it I don't even notice anymore, so for me, wearing sandals when it's 50F outside ain't no big thang. (I appreciate British people in this, they wear their flats with their dresses or leggings sans socks in all weather, I think they just have hardier feet or something. But then, British houses are not near as warm and køselig as Norwegian ones.) I have been known to wear winter sweaters and jeans and sandals. As long as my arms are warm, I'm fine.

So Rich tells me last night it was 39F. Brr. In this old building we live in they don't turn on the heat until October 1. I'm pretty sure we have some very chilly nights ahead of us. But today? Today was sunny, and so I put the pillows out to air, and changed the sheets on the bed and opened windows to get some of that lovely breeze around the apartment. The house smells fresh and clean and the bed smells of sun and warmth, and I hope it lasts for a few days, because soon I won't get to put the sheets out to dry in the sun, and it will be too cold to put the pillows out to air, and the balcony will become a place to store firewood and not a place to barbecue.

But not just yet...I still have some bbq plans up my sleeves for a couple of weeks yet.

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